How to make your phone battery last longer

Does your phone keep running out of charge during the day? There are a bunch of things you can do to make your phone battery last longer. We’ve put together some handy tips and tricks to save charge on your device and to stop it dying when you need it most. 

Last updated: 20th Oct 2020 at 9:35am

If you think your dying battery is beyond help, check out our list of the phones with the best battery life.  

  1. Are you charging your phone correctly?
  2. Close background apps
  3. Turn off notifications
  4. Manage the temperature of your phone
  5. Turn off Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
  6. Lower your screen brightness
  7. Turn on battery saver mode
  8. Turn off vibration
  9. Lower your volume
  10. Turn off cloud storage
  11.  Disable AI assistants
  12. Set emails to update in intervals
  13. Lower your auto lock screen time
  14. Turn off location services
  15. Switch on airplane mode
  16. Don’t stream on data

 

1. Are you charging your phone correctly?

Your first hurdle could be the way you’re charging your device. There is a wrong way to charge your phone, which will speed up its deterioration. The most efficient way to charge your phone to keep the battery lasting is to keep it between 40% and 80%.

Constantly charging your phone to 100% can actually cause more damage than help, as it places extra stress on the standard lithium-ion batteries that phones use. Charging your phone overnight can also overheat the battery, as it’s left bursting at 100% for hours at a time. 

2. Close background apps

Apps are constantly refreshing while they’re open, so having a whole list of open applications will most definitely cause your battery to run out more quickly. Even if your screen is off and you’re not using your phone, those open apps will continue to drain your energy. 

Close the apps by swiping them away, and turn off background app refresh to stop them from constantly updating their information when not in use. 

iPhone: Settings > General > Background App Refresh > Switch toggle to Off

Android: Recent Apps > Bin Icon

3. Turn off notifications

Nearly every will want to send you notifications to alert you about new information and updates. If you’re receiving notifications that you don’t actually want to get, you’re wasting precious battery life.

Turn off unwanted notifications on your iPhone or Android to stop these apps from spamming you, and ultimately make your battery life last longer. 

4. Manage the temperature of your phone

Batteries do not work well in extreme hot or extreme cold weather. They lose their charge much faster, at least until the temperature returns to a more comfortable temperature between 0 and 35C. If your phone is becoming too hot, it should send you a temperature warning - turn it off and leave it to cool. 

Don’t leave your phone in the sun or in a very cold area, or your battery will suffer.

5. Turn off Wi-Fi and Bluetooth (when they’re not needed)

When they’re switched on, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are constantly on the lookout for something to connect to. But did you know that these continuous scans are eating up your battery? 

We often turn on our Bluetooth to connect to our cars to play music on long journeys. And of course you’ll use Wi-Fi to connect to your home router or public hotspots. But when you’re out and nowhere near your car or Wi-Fi router, it’s best to turn these two options off. 

iPhone: Settings > Wi-Fi > Turn toggle off

iPhone: Settings > Bluetooth > Turn toggle off

Android: Swipe down > Tap Wi-Fi or Mobile Data to turn toggles on or off

6. Lower your screen brightness

The brighter your screen, the more power your phone uses to keep it light. You can either manually turn your brightness down or switch on auto-brightness, so it adjusts to your surroundings automatically. Auto-brightness can also help relieve eye strain, as it sets the screen to the appropriate brightness needed to see in dim or bright light. 

Having your screen’s brightness at a lower light will have a dramatic impact on your battery life. You’d be surprised how much energy it spends in keeping your display vividly lit up. 

iPhone: Settings > Display & Brightness > Auto Brightness > Set toggle to On

Android: Pull down notifications bar > Tap Auto next to brightness bar

7. Turn on battery saver mode

Most phones have a battery saving mode installed by default. Switching it on can help preserve your charge for longer. This mode does a range of things to help your battery out: adjusts the brightness to make it lower, stops certain notifications from appearing, stops background refreshes and prevents email catch up. 

iPhone: Settings > Battery > Low Power Mode. If you don’t set this yourself, your phone will ask you to when you reach 20% and then decline to 10%

Android: Settings > Battery > Power Saving Mode

Android: Settings > Battery > Ultra Power Saving Mode

8. Turn off vibration

Some people like to turn off sounds but keep vibration on, so they can still know when someone has sent them a message or they receive a notification. 

However, having your phone on vibrate actually uses up more power than using sound. For the vibration to work, a small motor has to rotate a small weight to make your phone shake, which uses up more energy than a ringtone noise. 

If you’re really concerned about your phone’s battery life, switch to silent (or do not disturb) mode.

9. Lower your volume

Simply put, the louder the sound, the more energy your phone will have to use to make it. Consider turning down your volume to save battery life.

10. Turn off Cloud Storage

If you’re using any form of cloud storage, your phone is probably automatically backing up to it. 

If you don’t need this on a day-to-day basis, consider turning it off in settings, even temporarily, to preserve battery life. The act of constantly transferring the pictures you take and the files you save can severely drain your battery over the day. 

Be warned though, turning off cloud storage automatic sync could mean you’re no longer backing up your data, which would be devastating if you lost your phone. Make sure you understand the risks before turning it off. 

11. Disable AI assistants

If you don’t use Siri or Cortana or Google Assistant, consider turning these AI helpers off. Keeping these switched on in your settings can drain your battery life, as your phone is constantly listening out for your command.

12. Set emails to update in intervals

Switch your email settings from push emails to fetch. When you get sent an email, and if your notifications are switched on for that app, you will receive an alert every time one comes in. 

Setting your email to fetch allows you to set an interval for your phone to check your emails, such as every half an hour or even every half day. The longer you make the interval, the less battery you’ll use up over the day.  

If you really want to save battery here, you can set it to manual, then it’ll only show new emails when you open the app. 

13. Lower your auto lock screen time

When you’re finished on your phone, the screen may stay on for a period of time before going black. This is due to your auto lock settings, which controls how long your phone stays on for without interaction, before it locks itself. 

This can waste battery as it’s basically unused screen time. As we talked about earlier, having your screen on (especially if it’s bright) has a big impact on charge.

Save battery life by shortening the auto-lock timer, but make sure it doesn’t get too annoying by switching off too quickly. 

14. Turn off location services

People usually switch their location services on when using travel and journey apps. What you may not know though is that GPS is a huge drain on your battery. 

If you’re not doing anything on your phone that requires knowing your precise location, turn this service off in your settings. If you’re on iOS, you’ll know if it’s on because a little compass signal will appear on the top bar of your screen, by your battery and Wi-Fi symbols. 

You can have location services switched on for specific apps, but when you’re not using it, just switch it off your phone entirely to save power. 

15. Switch on airplane mode

Airplane mode is a helpful feature that phones have to keep us safe while travelling on airplanes. 

Did you know that turning airplane mode on is a great way to save battery? That’s because it turns off power-hungry mobile service on your device, like data, Wi-Fi, and calls. You won’t receive any messages or phone calls while it’s switched on, but it’s great for preserving battery life. If you’re in a bad signal area anyway, it’s not like you’ll be missing anything. 

16. Don’t stream on data

When you’re out and about, you more than likely have your mobile data on. While it’s best to not have it on at all, if you do need it on, try not to download or stream anything. These power-sucking activities will not only eat up your data, but they’ll also drain your battery very quickly. 

Download things, like videos and songs, ahead of time while still connected to Wi-Fi or a charging port. 

 

And there you have it. 16 hacks that you can use to make your battery last longer! Let us know what tips you like to use on Twitter.  

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