Ways to prolong lifespan of netbook laptop & PDA phone battery

Posted on 2010-08-21
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-11
I'm enquiring abt prolonging battery lifespan, not minimizing power usage

I have a multitouch netbook that uses polymer battery, a Motorola DEXT PDA
that comes with Lithium battery (I think) & Samsung i780 PDA (comes with
2 Lithium batteries)

Is it true that if I uses till the batteries are fully drained, then only charge it,
this will prolong the lifespan of the batteries?

If I left the battery in the netbook (or a laptop) while the power is plugged
in, this will shorten the lifespan of the battery - is this true?
One advice I got was to remove the batteries when AC power is plugged
in (for netbook & Laptop) unless I want to charge a drained battery or when
I'm on the move & there's no AC power, then only plug in the battery : this
will prolong battery lifespan

Are there any software or tools that I can use to enhance battery lifetime?

I'm asking all these questions as some of the PDA & polymer batteries are rather
costly & getting a compatible batteries for PDA have been known to cause
high temperature of my HTC & Nokia PDAs mobile phones & damaged them
Question by:sunhux
LVL 11

Accepted Solution

xtreminator earned 708 total points
ID: 33491934
A. 1 : as long as i know using notepad/PDA till battery fully drain, and then charging will not affect the life span

A:2 : laptops/notebooks have inverter to reclaim power from battery when AC fails, also over charge protection circuits.
it is advisable to do not always put laptops on AC adapters, let them have some test of battery juice for some amount.

A 3: No software in market that enhance battery lifetime, also battery lifespan depends on temperature , environment changes ,etc.

the software avail in market that claim to enhance battery lifetime, it actually disable rarely usable hardware, so u can use system on battery last longer.

++ : do not remain insert battery in laptop/pda if you plan to not use for log time (more than 20 days)    

Assisted Solution

mcuk_storm earned 692 total points
ID: 33491960
A1: If you let your battery completely discharge before charging it again you are going to charge it fewer times/cycles than if you keep re-charging it when it is half charged, so yes this will improve things slightly

A2: This is more complicated as different laptops have different circuitry for managing the charging of batteries, a good example of this is most recent lenovo laptops won't charge the battery unless it is under about 90-95% charge, so if you plug in the mains adapter it will run off that but not charge until you have used it on battery more. That said there are MANY laptops that don't seem to do this and like with Q1 continual part charging isn't going to do it a great amount of good. There are however very few laptops that once the battery is fully charged will then switch back and forth between using mains and the battery so leaving the battery in over short periods should be fine. If you are planning to run it on mains for extended periods (days/weeks) then removing the battery can help as the battery will naturally loose charge overtime even when not being used, if this happens the laptop may then try to charge that little bit again. One thing that has also been said in the past is that leaving your battery in while running it on mains overcharges and damages the battery, in principal this could be true but the vast majority of charging circuits should leave a safe margin and be able to detect a full charge so this shouldn't happen.

A3: Again this is dependant on the laptop and charging circuit, you are probably better to conserve power as much as possible on the device using power management tools to extend time between recharges.

Assisted Solution

wmcdon7160 earned 600 total points
ID: 33492025
Everyone I've known that has run a laptop on AC alone, has inadvertently knocked the power cable out and the laptop just snaps off. Very unhealthy for you laptop hardware and any current work you might have open. I've seen it corrupt hard drives, and boot records.

Personally, I don't think you will find anyone who has run two identical laptops under identical situations, where one had the battery pulled when plugged in. All you'll find is speculation, and links to other people's speculation. (no offense intended to the previous comments about batteries and charging)

Speaking of speculation, I've heard that frequent charging of a lithium battery doesn't always let the battery get low enough to consider the charge as a use of the total charge cycles... but again, good luck finding anyone that used two phones the exact same way under both scenarios.


Expert Comment

ID: 33511773
Lithium-ion batteries are the most resilient to "memory" of bad charging states, esp. if you discharge them completely from time to time. while it is true that leaving the laptop battery out will prevent it from discharging, I agree it's a bad idea.

Which PDA are you using? do you use a lot of background applications that cause the battery to drain?

Just curious.

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