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A Laptop Battery's Worst Enemy

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We all know laptop batteries don't last nearly as long as we'd like. (Where's the Duracell Bunny when you need him?) The question is do you know what's zapping the life out of your battery the most.

The Microsoft 7 team (Microsoft 7: as in the operating system to end the long national nightmare known as Windows Vista) is apparantly working on tweeks for their next version that will economize battery power. In doing so, they've put together a little pie chart showing what parts of the laptop suck up the most energy.

Here's a screen shot of the graphic on Lifehacker.

The big culprit is your screen, which uses up nearly half of the battery power all by itself (43% to be exact). The hard drive is only responsible for 5% and graphics only 8%.

Moral to the story: turn down the brightness on your screen and save some battery time.

Here are some other things you can do to squeeze more juice out of your battery:

1. Keep your laptop cool. Blow out the vents or wipe them clean with a proper cloth. A cool laptop runs more efficiently.

2. Turn off applications like iTunes running in the background. Take a look at your toolbar in the bottom right hand corner and check out all the little icons to see what's actually running. You may be surprised how hard your laptop is working.

3. Use fewer USB devices and external devices of any kind. This is one of my personal weaknesses. I hate touchpads and indulge in using my mouse. That's one more thing draining my power. It's also better to load your data or media files onto your hard drive than work off a cd or dvd.

4. Tis better to hibernate than sit on standby.

5. Do your routine maintenence tasks like defragmenting your hard drive to improve efficiency.

Last updated: Jan 12, 2009




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