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How to keep your iPhone battery in good health

Every time Apple® releases a new iPhone®, or even an iOS update, the added apps and features put more demands on the device’s battery.  Consider, too, that rechargeable batteries in today’s mobile technology are consumable components that degrade over time, and become less capable of holding a charge or delivering optimal performance.

So how can you ensure your iPhone battery lives a long, healthy life?

In iOS 13, Apple provides a new Optimized Battery Charging feature that helps slow the rate at which your battery degrades.  Along with this feature, there are now tools that help you see exactly how your iPhone attacks its battery over a 24-hour period and, with less detail, over a 10-day span.

Optimized Battery Charging, oddly, is disabled by fault.  But it’s also easy to enable — simply open Settings, tap Battery, then tap Battery Health.  In that section, you’ll see representation of how much of the max capacity your battery has left, along with a toggle for Optimized Battery Charging.

But let’s not charge ahead without first understanding some helpful options.

– Open Settings, then tap Battery.  Here you’ll find the Low Power Mode switch.  If you’re worried about running out of power before you can recharge on a particular day, enable Low Power Mode.  iOS automatically offers to enable it if your battery drops to 20%, and that’s a good idea unless you can power up soon.  Low Power Mode mostly disables background activity like mail fetching and photo syncing.

– If you want to enable Low Power Mode on a more regular basis, add it to Control Center via Settings > Control Center > Customize Controls.

– Open Settings, then tap Battery.  Lower on the screen you’ll see Battery Health, and that’s where you’ll find Optimized Battery Charging.  Once enabled, it lets iOS 13 learn from your schedule to ensure your iPhone (unnecessarily) spends less time fully charged.  iOS even counsels you that the feature helps ”reduce battery aging.”  How polite!

– If you don’t charge your iPhone battery on a regular schedule, it’s not counterproductive to leave this option off.

Whenever CranstonIT gets feedback on uneven battery performance, the first place we check is the Battery Health screen.  Apple contends that iPhone batteries are designed to retain “up to 80%” of its original capacity after 500 charges.  The higher the Maximum Capacity number (also found in Battery Health), the better, and although your mileage may vary, anything above 90% should be fine.

That stated, there are always battery hogs lurking in the shadows.  Let’s explore some.

– Open Settings, then tap Battery.  Mid-screen you’ll find Battery Usage by App, along with a list of percentages by use.  Tap Show Activity for more details and some eye-opening data.

– Scrutinize the entries at the top because they’ve used the lion’s share of your power.  Other than discovering No Cell Coverage (a tower-searching power waster), you can always modify your iPhone behavior to tighten your energy belt.

– For the entries and apps lower on the list, simply make sure they are not unnecessarily working too much in the background.  Often times, a high percentage of battery-sucking activity is attached to tasks such as uploading or downloading photos — as just one example.  In those cases, it’s time to force quit the app or power cycle your iPhone.

– As referenced, upgrading your iPhone or iOS requires background tasks to work harder while indexing content on your device.  And while that contributes to battery drain up front, those issues typically don’t last too long.

Here are some additional tips for improving battery health:

– Avoid excessive heat exposure when leaving or charging your device.

– Avoid rapid temperature changes in extreme cold or hot circumstances.

– Avoid allowing your battery to completely discharge.

– Learn your usage habits — and don’t fully charge your iPhone when unnecessary.

If you are perplexed by an iPhone battery draining faster than it should — and the tips above haven’t solved the issue — best to visit your local Apple Store.  If you have any other questions about battery health in general, give us a shout.  You can always reach CranstonIT at 412-200-5656 or support@cranstonit.com