Why you should only charge your phone to 80%

Why you should only charge your phone to 80%

The time it takes to charge a phone from 0-80% is generally not the same as the time it takes to charge from 80-100%. Here’s why:

  1. Fast charging technology: Most modern smartphones employ fast charging technology that allows the battery to charge quickly from 0-80%. This initial charging phase is typically much faster than the final 20%.
  2. Trickle charging: As the battery approaches 100%, the charging speed slows down significantly. This is known as trickle charging, which is designed to protect the battery from overcharging and extend its overall lifespan.
  3. Battery protection: Manufacturers implement charging algorithms that deliberately slow down the charging process as the battery nears full capacity. This is done to minimize stress on the battery and preserve its long-term health.
  4. Charging curve: The charging process follows a non-linear curve. The initial phase (0-80%) is relatively quick, while the final phase (80-100%) takes disproportionately longer.
  5. Heat generation: As the battery approaches full charge, it generates more heat. To prevent damage, the charging speed is reduced, which contributes to the longer charging time for the final 20%.

Given these factors, it typically takes significantly less time to charge a phone from 0-80% compared to the time required to charge from 80-100%. This is why many battery experts recommend keeping your phone’s charge between 20% and 80% for optimal battery health and longevity.

Bonus tip:
Lithium-ion batteries, commonly used in smartphones, do not suffer from the “memory effect” that affected older battery types. You don’t need to fully discharge them before recharging

The Art of Smartphone Battery Conservation

Smartphones have become an integral part of our lives, but their usefulness is only as good as their battery life. Here’s some tips to extend your phone’s battery life, along with some fun facts about batteries.

Tip 1: Avoid extreme temperatures

“Modern smartphones are using Lithium-ion batteries who are calibrated to work best in room temperature environment. Excessive heat or very low temperatures can [affect battery performance],” notes a battery expert.

Fun fact: The Baghdad Battery, discovered in 1936, is believed by some to be an ancient battery dating back to 250 BC – 224 AD. When filled with vinegar, it could generate a small voltage!

2000 year old Baghdad ‘battery’ lost in the Iraq War 2003 – https://www.smith.edu/hsc/museum/ancient_inventions/battery2.html

Tip 2: Don’t let your battery drop to 0% or always charge to 100%

“Don’t let your phone battery drop to 0%. Don’t always charge your phone to 100%, either,” advises a tech expert. This practice helps maintain battery health over time. “Batteries are surprisingly fussy things,” says an article on tdcat.com. Indeed, different battery types have their own quirks and optimal care routines.

Tip 3: Use low-power mode strategically

While low-power mode can extend battery life, it’s not ideal for constant use. As Brad Nichols, a technician with Staymobile, explains, “Phones are designed to be really flashy and give you an over-the-top experience. When you turn them into that efficiency mode, it gets rid of all the redundant things.”

Fun fact: The term “battery” was coined by Benjamin Franklin in 1749, inspired by the appearance of charged glass plates resembling a battery of cannons.

Tip 4: Be mindful of background apps

Some apps, particularly social media ones, can drain your battery even when not in use. “A lot of [apps], like the Facebook app, do things in the background, even when you’re not running it,” says Nichols.

Did you know? Scientists at MIT have experimented with “infecting” batteries with viruses to build thin wires within them, potentially making them lighter and more powerful!

New virus-built battery could power cars, electronic devices – MIT News

Tip 5: Restart your phone regularly

“Restarting your phone takes two minutes, and you can usually tell the difference,” Nichols advises. “If you turn your phone off completely, it’s processing zero tasks as opposed to 20 tasks every ten minutes.”

Fun fact: The world’s longest-running battery, the Oxford Electric Bell, has been ringing continuously for over 175 years!