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7 Activities That Are Draining Your Laptop's Battery

We all know that laptops are power-hungry. But what many of us don’t realize is just how much battery power we can suck up without even realizing it. Here are 7 activities that are eating away at your laptop’s battery life. So next time you’re about to do one of these things, try to remember to plug in your charger!

1. Watching videos or movies

This one is pretty straightforward. Video playback is one of the most power-hungry activities you can do on your laptop, especially if you're streaming the video. So if you’re watching a movie or streaming a TV show, your battery is going to take a hit.

The exact amount of battery that you're draining will vary from one notebook to another since it depends on the GPU, CPU as well as the wattage of the battery itself. However, for reference, the MacBook Air (2021) features one of the best performances in terms of battery and you can expect 1 hour of streaming video at max brightness to easily cut down on 10% of the battery life

If you transfer this to a laptop that doesn't particularly stand out for its battery life you can expect the ratio to be closer to 20% per hour of video streaming.

2. Playing games

Just like watching videos, playing games is also a very power-hungry activity. In fact, gaming is one of the most demanding activities you can do on your laptop in terms of both CPU and GPU usage. So if you’re looking to game for a long time without having to worry about your battery life, make sure you’re plugged in.

Related: The Best HP Laptops Of 2022 

This should not come as a surprise. Gaming laptops have notoriously bad battery lives, with most of them offering the user anywhere between two and four hours worth of battery life when gaming

There are, however, a few exceptions to this rule, such as the recently reviewed Acer Predator Triton 500 SE PT516-52S-99EL, which offers a significant boost, but it's not the norm within this segment by far.

3. Running multiple programs at the same time

Even if you’re not doing anything too strenuous on your laptop, running multiple programs at the same time can still be a battery drain. That’s because each program is using up some of your computer’s resources, and the more programs you have running, the more resources your computer has to use. So if you want to save some battery power, try to close any programs that you’re not using.

It's very common for a user to have chrome open with several tabs open at a time, and have other software running in the background. If you need to make your battery life count then the best course of action is to just have one app open at a time. 

4. Using power-hungry applications

There are certain applications that just tend to be more resource-intensive than others. So if you’re using one of these applications, you can expect your battery life to take a hit. Some examples of power-hungry applications include video editing software, 3D modeling software, and image editing software.

The reason behind this is that these sorts of applications require a lot of processing power and oftentimes, they are also graphics-heavy. 

In fact, a little-known fact is that chrome is a very power-hungry browser. Sure, most of us wouldn't even think of using another browser but you should know that most browsers consume substantially less battery life than Chrome.

5. Using a hotspot connection instead of a regular internet connection

If you're using your laptop in an area where there is no Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection, you may be tempted to connect to the internet using your phone’s hotspot feature. However, you should know that this can be a battery drain. 

The reason for this is that when you’re using a hotspot connection, your laptop is essentially working twice as hard to connect to the internet. So if you want to save some battery power, try to find a Wi-Fi or Ethernet connection instead.

6. Having Several Peripherals Connected to Your Laptop

Having a lot of devices connected to your laptop can also be a battery drain. That’s because each device is drawing power from your laptop, and the more devices you have connected, the more power your laptop has to use. So if you want to save some battery power, try to disconnect any devices that you’re not using.

This goes for both devices that are physically connected to your laptop as well as devices that are connected through a wireless connection such as Bluetooth.

7. Leaving The Display And Keyboard Brightness Unchecked

This might be a bit obvious to some of you. However, many people are unaware that the backlit keyboard also consumes a lot of battery. Most laptops will have the backlit keyboard turn on automatically. If this is your case and you don't really have a need for it then we would suggest disabling this feature to extend your laptop's battery life. 

As far as the display is concerned, the brightness at which you work will have a direct and palpable impact on your battery life. Consider reducing the brightness on your laptop to significantly improve the battery life. 

For reference, when manufacturers perform battery life claims they tend to do them under scenarios such as 50% brightness and running a few programs at a time. If you find yourself struggling to reach the battery claims you saw when you first bought the laptop that's the most likely culprit and you should consider taking on a few of these measures to be able to quickly improve battery life. 

What Do I Do If None Of This Improves My Battery Life?

If you find yourself in a situation where you have deployed all of these tips and still find your battery life to fall significantly below what was advertised you should consider replacing the battery itself. Sometimes you can get a faulty battery and a change will have you noticing the effects instantly. 

If you don't know the exact model of your laptop's battery then you should check the specifications for your particular notebook. 

To change the battery you're going to need to disassemble the laptop by removing the bottom case, disconnecting the battery, and inserting a new one in its place. It's a fairly easy procedure that can be done in less than 5 minutes, much like our RAM Upgrades. However, we do recommend making use of a kit to open up your laptop since you don't want to do it wrongly and void your warranty.


We hope that you enjoyed reading this article and that you were able to take away a few tips on how to improve your laptop's battery life. If you have any questions or comments please leave them down below and we'll be happy to assist you further.