You might have wondered if you can leave your laptop plugged in overnight. In this guide, we answer several questions related to your laptop’s battery and its charging. Laptops give us the convenience of having our PC around everywhere we go. It is mostly possible by its compact and easy-to-carry size and the battery backup it comes with. The battery is one of the most important components of a laptop. We all have different doubts regarding our laptop batteries and the charging cycles we should follow for optimal performance.
Can I leave my laptop plugged in overnight?
If you are wondering if you can leave your laptop plugged in overnight, you should know the following things first and understand how it works.
- Types of laptop batteries
- How to know which battery your laptop has?
- Is it OK to plug in a laptop overnight?
- Reasons for possible damage to laptop batteries
Let’s get into the details and know more.
1] Types of laptop batteries
There are two types of laptop batteries used in modern laptops. They are Lithium-ion (Li-ion) and Lithium Polymer (Li-Po) batteries. These two kinds of batteries are found mostly in every laptop we use today. Out of the two, Lithium-ion batteries are the most common type of battery found in laptops as well as other portable devices.
Lithium-ion batteries offer a high energy density which makes it very easy to store a significant amount of energy in a small size. This is its biggest advantage, where the manufacturers can give users more battery capabilities without increasing the size. The other major advantages of Lithium-ion batteries are their longer lifespan, lightweight design, and lack of memory effect. It means that even if there are incomplete discharges of battery power, it will not decrease the capacity of the battery.
Lithium Polymer batteries, on the other hand, are another variation of Lithium-ion batteries. We generally find liquid or gel electrolytes in traditional Lithium-ion batteries. In the case of Lithium Polymer, it uses a solid polymer electrolyte instead of a liquid or gel electrolyte. Lithium Polymer batteries are thinner and more flexible compared to Lithium-ion batteries. We can find it in most of the ultra-thin laptops.
In both kinds of Laptop batteries, you can follow some definite tips and get the most out of them. You can follow the below tips to optimize the charging and overall lifespan of Lithium-ion and lithium-polymer laptop batteries.
- Avoid deep discharges: Do not wait until the battery is drained completely before you connect the power chord and charge the battery. You need to aim for shallow discharges and frequent recharges that can help you preserve the battery’s lifespan.
- Avoid extreme temperatures: In cases of extreme temperatures, you need to find a way to cool down the battery instead of putting it on charge. Extreme temperatures and charging are a bad combination that might hurt the lifespan as well as the physical well-being of the battery.
2] How to know which battery your laptop has?
There are different ways, you can use to know which battery your laptop has. Some of them are:
- Printed information: The battery that comes with our laptop has a label on it with printed information about the battery. The label contains the information on battery type, model number, part number, voltage, charging current, etc. You can know which type of battery your laptop has just by removing the battery from your laptop. Just remember that you have to remove it so as not to damage the laptop.
- Using third-party software: If the battery on your laptop is not physically removable or you do not want to risk removing the battery, you can use third-party software designed for battery health checks, which also displays the information of the battery type, etc.
- System specifications: Each laptop has a specifications page that is available on the internet. You can look up the specifications of your laptop based on the model and know the type of battery, as most of the OEMs include the battery type in the list for the customer’s convenience.
3] Is it OK to plug in a laptop overnight?
It is not okay to plug in a laptop overnight. According to Microsoft, the performance and health of Lithium-ion batteries decreases over time. The battery may not work as well as when it was new. So, keeping the battery charged to 100% all the time, or plugging it overnight for charging makes the battery performance decline faster than the normal rate.
To tackle the issue of battery deterioration, some OEM manufacturers are including Smart charging with Windows 11. You can find if your device has the Smart charging feature or not in the specifications of your laptop. Smart charging is enabled by default on the devices it is available. When enabled, you can see a heart icon on the battery indicator on the taskbar, and in the Power and battery settings. You can see the “Fully Smart charged” indication when you hover over the battery icon.
Smart charging helps you to protect against the deterioration of the battery faster by limiting the charging to 80% or below, which is better for the battery overall. Your battery stops charging when it reaches the limit, even though it is plugged in. With Smart charging, your device never charges to 100%, which helps you keep the battery healthier for a longer time.
4] Reasons for the damage to laptop batteries
Laptop batteries are not damaged by plugging in overnight as all modern laptops are equipped to stop charging when they reach 100%. Even if you leave the laptop plugged in for the entire day, it won’t make a difference as it won’t charge beyond 100%.
Instead, some other factors damage your laptop batteries and kill them before their lifespan. They are hot temperatures, physical damages, deep discharges, not taking care of the charging and power management in the software settings, the age of the battery, and manufacturing defects.
Is it bad to keep a laptop plugged in when fully charged?
Modern laptops are equipped with the capability to not charge when the battery is charged fully. It won’t make any difference even if the laptop is plugged in for 24 hours a day as the battery technologies have changed compared to older laptops. No matter how safe they seem, it would be better to unplug when you see the battery has charged fully to avoid any unwanted damage to your laptop and battery due to excess power surge or some other reasons.
How do I keep my laptop battery healthy?
Keeping your laptop battery healthy is an easy process, if you follow some tips. Try to avoid the laptop in extreme heat and charging it in extremely hot temperatures. Never wait for the laptop’s battery to fully discharge before you put it on charge. Make sure the power source is well-set without any chances of a power surge, etc.