Should You Leave Your Laptop Plugged in While it is Fully Charged?
29 Mar 2018
The short answer is no. The more complicated answer is somewhat-kind-of no. There are downsides and benefits to leaving your laptop plugged in while you use it, even if it is fully charged.
The main issue with leaving your laptop unplugged while you are using it is that most laptops limit their performance in order to improve their battery lives. This is something you can change in your device’s Power Management settings if you don’t want to deal with the slower processing speeds.
However, if you want to get the most out of your laptop’s battery during your devices lifetime, you don’t want to leave your laptop plugged in all the time while you are using it. “Overcharging” a laptop battery isn’t really a thing you can do with most modern-day laptops because the charger will bypass the battery once it is fully charged and will become the power source for your laptop.
What does happen though is that if you keep a battery 100% charged all the time, you reduce the number of charge-discharge cycles your battery can go through – and there is a finite amount of these cycles that each battery has.
So, what can you do to maximize your battery life and your processing power? An easy thing you can do is not let your laptop’s battery completely die. Letting your laptop’s battery fully drain greatly reduces the total number of recharge cycles your battery has. If possible, leave your battery around 40-80% charged whenever not plugged in.
Another easy thing you can do to get the most out of your laptop’s battery life is to keep your device from overheating. Excessive heat generated by the laptop can reduce how long your laptop stays charged, and it can also make your battery completely unusable if left unchecked for too long. A laptop’s fan will help to reduce this risk if it is working properly, dusting the laptop’s vents will help, and getting a laptop cooling pad can help if only in a very minute way.