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How do I extend the battery life of my laptop?

Discussion in 'Laptops' started by BikeManiac, Oct 5, 2006.

  1. BikeManiac

    BillW50 Guest

    Guess what Gateway says about this?


    Q: Why does my Gateway notebook battery not charge to 100 percent in

    A: The battery on some Gateway® notebook computers may not indicate a
    100% charge in Windows®, even when the power adapter is plugged in. The
    battery may appear to stop charging between 95 percent and 99 percent.
    This is normal operation and is designed to extend the life of the
    battery. Even when the indicator light on the chassis shows the battery
    fully charged, the battery still receives a trickle charge. The battery
    stops fully charging and is given a trickle charge so that it does not
    accidentally get overcharged.

    To check the battery status, press the battery meter button on the
    battery. If the battery status does not show 100%, the battery may need
    to be recalibrated. To locate the instructions for recalibrating your
    battery, select your notebook type from our Support Documents page, and
    then click FAQs.


    BillW50, Oct 7, 2006
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  2. BikeManiac

    M.I.5¾ Guest

    That's two ifs with nothing following them.
    But the load of a laptop is not a small drain. Twenty cycles of this is one
    of the 500 or so cycles the battery is capable of.
    I was rather fancying that by setting to 100% it wouldn't try to charge the
    battery at all - or rather just top up any normal losses like most other
    laptops do.
    Rubbish. As long as you don't take the battery below 3.0 volts per cell, no
    harm will be done. (Most battery management systems work on 3.2 volts to
    give a margin of error). I also have several batteries over 10 years old
    that have regularly been 'fully' discharged.
    M.I.5¾, Oct 9, 2006
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  3. BikeManiac

    M.I.5¾ Guest

    Some early designs of Li-ion betteries were designed to be charged this way.
    The charger indicated that charge had finished, but in fact, it took about
    another hour or so to top the battery up to 100%. Some manufacturers do
    still charge batteries this way (and there is a body of opinion that this is
    the only right way).
    M.I.5¾, Oct 9, 2006
  4. BikeManiac

    M.I.5¾ Guest

    There is a strange 'failure' mode of some batteries where they never
    indicate more than almost fully charged. They nevertheless seem to deliver
    full capacity. The battery management circuit seems to be ablr to take
    account of this.

    I have one such battery that will not indicate more than 80% charged, but it
    still delivers a full charge.
    There is much information that the battery manufacturers won't share, hence
    the existence of so many wives' tales.
    M.I.5¾, Oct 9, 2006
  5. BikeManiac

    BillW50 Guest

    I might be all wet, but I believe the level of charge is read by the
    current voltage of the pack. You can have one weak cell, or more than
    one that can not hold the full voltage. I see this from all rechargeable
    batteries types. And this doesn't necessary mean the capacity of the
    cell(s) is any less.
    Yes so true. ;)
    BillW50, Oct 9, 2006
  6. BikeManiac

    BillW50 Guest

    Oh sorry... I mean if the battery doesn't get warm (either from its own
    heat generated or externally). Or living in a circuit (like my Toshiba
    2595XDVD laptops) that once the battery is charged up, the circuit never
    checks the battery again. The only way to reset it is to remove the AC
    power and then reapply.

    And if both conditions applies... I feel fairly good about the device
    taking very good care of the Li-Ion battery from the get go.
    What is describe above IMHO isn't being drained by the laptop, but by
    internal resistance of the battery itself. As the laptop is being
    described as running off of AC power.
    I don't believe so. We are talking about a battery living in a device
    and is no different than sitting on the shelf (assuming there is no
    external heat). The only difference is the device will charge the
    battery if it drops below a given level. In this case, 96%. Heck setting
    this down to 40% would be okay too.
    Well maybe... it seems to be higher than that to me.
    No you misunderstood. full discharge / charging cycle will kill the
    battery in the sense you can only do this 500 times or less. While if
    you recharge them earlier, they will last many more discharge / charge
    cycles. Using your own 3000-5000 figures... 6 to 10 times longer.

    The only benefit that I can see of using a full discharge / charge cycle
    is to check the capacity of the battery. I do this with all rechargeable
    battery types.
    BillW50, Oct 9, 2006
  7. BikeManiac

    Joseph Fenn Guest

    Get a 3v lithium duracell and relax for 10 years.
    Joseph Fenn, Oct 10, 2006
  8. BikeManiac

    M.I.5¾ Guest

    In the context of the OP, it described a situation where the laptop was
    running off the battery when connected to AC power until it had discharged
    to the 96% point, and then charged. This cycle was repeated.
    We only wish it was!
    Huh? If you only discharge 10% before charging, how is 5000 such cycles a
    longer life that 500 cycles of full discharge? Both are 500C
    Necessary with Li-ion batteries every 3 to 6 months - but only to calibrate
    the management circuit.
    M.I.5¾, Oct 10, 2006
  9. BikeManiac

    M.I.5¾ Guest

    In most battery types, it gives a very approximate state of charge - and in
    some the voltage actually goes down as charge progresses. It is an
    extremely accurate state of charge indicator with a new Li-ion due to the
    comparitively huge voltage variation over the charge cycle. However, even
    if the full voltage is reduced to an apparent 80% charge, the battery
    management circuit still nevertheless indicates full charge. There is
    therefore another mechanism at work.
    M.I.5¾, Oct 10, 2006
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