Your laptop battery is not meant to last forever, and unfortunately, it may not even last long enough. Partly this is because the nature of lithium-ion batteries is to deteriorate over time. Partly, it is because manufacturers design them that way so you can upgrade.
At times you can notice the progression of your laptops’ decrease in performance, but at times, it may just die on you without warning. Either way, it is best to know when your laptop starts losing optimal performance and how far long you still have for its use. It is why knowing various test options for your laptop’s battery help.
Here are the best ones to try.
1. Simple battery test
This method is a straight-up troubleshooting method to determine whether the laptop battery or the laptop itself is the problem. If you notice a problem with your laptop power, remove it from its bay, and run your laptop on the AC adapter only. If it runs properly, then the problem is with your battery. If it does not, then the problem is probably with your AC adapter and your laptop internal. You can proceed to swap out the adapter and even the power source so that you can determine the problematic component.
2. Use system diagnostics
You can let your laptop give you the status of your battery, and using your model’s owner’s manual; you can take the next action depending on the status you get from the troubleshooting report. To get these diagnostics, follow the steps below.
· First, unplug your laptop from its power cord.
· Then turn off your laptop.
· After it has been off for a few seconds, restart it by pressing the power button.
· As soon as it powers up, press the Esc button.
· On the Start-Up Menu that appears choose System Diagnostics
· Several tests for different components will appear in a list; choose Battery Test.
· Plug your power cord back to the laptop and then start the battery test by clicking the Start button.
Once the test is complete, you will be given your battery’s status message rating your battery as either, No battery, Calibrate, Ok, Weak, Very Weak, or Unknown.
3. Generate a laptop health report using a command prompt
For a more detailed report regarding your laptop’s health, the windows battery health report is the best option. It is a hidden tool in the OS that provides you with comprehensive information, including;
· Design capacity vs. full capacity.
· Your battery specifications
· Battery usage in recent days, as well as the history of past use since you first purchased it
· Battery life estimates
· Battery capacity history
· Battery usage graph
This tool allows you to notice any discrepancies and pick out any gradual changes in your laptop battery’s health with time. To access it, use the following steps;
· Open command prompt either by pressing Windows + X and choose command prompt or in later windows versions, choose Windows PowerShell (Admin) from the menu that pops up.
· On the pop-up window that appears seeking permission to make changes to the device, select yes.
· A coding window will appear on which you should type powercfg/battery report. You can also copy-paste this command on the window. Press enter to run the command.
· The file will be generated and saved in HTML, usually under this folder C:\Users\Your_Username\battery-report.html
· Double click on the file, and it will open in your default browser, showing you the report.
You can choose where the file goes by adding an extra command. After powercfg/battery report add \output *foldername*\final name.html. For example, if you want the document to appear in your documents folder, which is more convenient, type or paste the following command before pressing enter. Powercfg/battery report/output *Documents*\mybatteryreport.html
4. Use Battery Health Apps
Another option you can use our apps. These provide easily accessible information on various metrics on your laptop battery’s health. All you do is download them and run them like any other app. They vary in the details they capture and their interface. Some top apps to consider include;
A. Smarter Battery
This app is the most comprehensive in the market and has more information than the inbuilt windows tool. Its only letdown is that the app has so many options, and the premium version is for sale. It also has a range of resources that allow you to perform calibrations, set alarms for low battery power levels, and save battery information for future reference. It captures information such as;
· Full battery capacity against design capacity
· The power state in both AC and battery mode
· Discharging time
· Battery wear level
· Cycle count
· A graph showing the changes in the capacity level
For a free yet quality app, the BatteryInfoView is the best choice. It comes with two pages, the first that covers battery information like its design and full charge capacity, the cycle count, and the battery health. The second page analyzes the power state, charge, and discharge values, among others.
Other free quality apps you can use are;
· Battery Care
Tips to extend your laptop battery’s life.
1. Set your battery mode to the setting the manufacturer recommends for longer battery life. You can find these settings in the battery slider, usually specified as Better Battery.
2. Maintain your laptop’s airflow by periodically cleaning the vents from dust. You should also avoid cushioning your laptop on pillows, blankets, and other soft materials that block ventilation.
3. Reduce the number of battery charging cycles by charging full capacity and using it until it is near empty before charging again. You can also learn to shut your battery when you are not using it to preserve the power.
4. Adjust your display and graphic settings to more efficient modes so that they do not put a strain on your battery life.
5. Close tabs you are no longer using, especially apps that use a lot of power, instead of leaving them running even while you are not using them. You should also monitor the apps that run as soon as you power up your laptop and run in the background.
6. Use airplane mode if you are not going to need wifi and Bluetooth capabilities for an extended time. It will help you avoid distractions from endless notifications while saving significant battery drain from the wireless radios and apps relying on them.
Regularly checking your laptop battery’s health will save you from a sudden inconvenience when it breaks down unexpectedly. It also allows you to monitor usage and implement better usage practices that elongate its life. The tips shared below should start you off and enable you to get more life from your battery.