How to Make Your Laptop Last as Long as Possible

When you buy a new laptop, you probably expect it to last for at least a few years, but it would be nice if it lasted longer. If you’ve ever had a laptop that gave you problems shortly after purchase or just didn’t live up to your expectations, it’s not your fault. There are certain things you need to do to make a computer last, and if you have a cheap device, sometimes it’s just not possible.

Whether you’ve recently purchased a laptop or have had it for a while, here’s how to maximize its lifespan and get the most out of it.

1. Start by getting a high-quality laptop

Of all the factors that contribute to a long laptop lifespan, starting with a high-quality device is at the top of the list. Buying a good laptop that’s designed to last for a long time makes all the other tricks and strategies work even better. For example, all your efforts to preserve battery capacity will go to waste if you’re working with a cheap laptop that doesn’t last long.

High-quality laptops made by brand name manufacturers are easy to find and don’t cost nearly as much as you might think. Reliable devices are affordable and the best brands, like HP, always seem to have laptops on sale.

When it comes to the specs that matter most, consider the processor power, the amount of RAM it comes with and capability for expansion, and disk space. If you need to save money and can’t go all out, don’t skimp on RAM. Instead, get a smaller hard drive and use an external drive to store large files.

2. Take great care of your battery

Laptop batteries are lithium-ion, which require more care than just charging them when they die. Anytime you have a charger plugged into a device with a lithium battery, the charge will continue to flow even when the battery reaches 100%. At that point, the flowing charge will start to damage the battery and limit its capacity. This is why laptop batteries stop holding a charge over time.

It takes a conscious effort to maintain a laptop battery so that its full charge capacity can be used long-term. It’s difficult but not impossible, so here’s what you can do:

·  Only charge your laptop battery to 80%.

·  Only let your laptop battery drain to 20%.

·  Never leave your laptop charger plugged in overnight.

·  On occasions where you need to start with a full charge, go for it, but don’t make it a habit.

·  Pay attention to the battery compartment. If it starts to swell, take it to a repair shop because that is an indication that your battery may explode. This doesn’t happen often, but there have been several brands that have experienced this problem with defective batteries.

3. Don’t max out your memory usage

Each time you open an application to use, it consumes a portion of your laptop’s memory (RAM). You only have a finite amount of RAM, which means if you open too many applications at once, you run the risk of maxing out your available memory, which can cause applications to be sluggish and/or crash without warning.

If you keep getting errors about not having enough system memory, you might think it’s an issue with your laptop, but it’s just a lack of resources and you’re overworking your computer. Instead of looking for a new laptop, see if you can add more RAM to your current computer. If not, then you probably need to get a new laptop.

4. Don’t put your laptop on a tall surface while plugged in

Unless you’ve got a magnetic charger, avoid placing your laptop on a high surface while charging. You never know when you, someone else, or even a pet might walk into the cord and send your laptop flying through the air, only to crash down hard. It happens all the time, and if it doesn’t ruin your screen or hard drive, it can chip off pieces of plastic on the inside that get lodged inside other components.

Laptops won’t last forever, but their lifespan can be prolonged

In addition to taking care of your battery and managing your application use, take basic precautions, like not having cups of liquid nearby that can spill into your device. Water damage is harder to fix than a broken screen or failed hard drive.

No tech gadget will last forever, but you can prolong the lifespan of your laptop by following the tips outlined in this article.

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