Is it wrong to leave your laptop plugged in all the time?

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Many people leave their laptops plugged in all the time. This raises the question of whether constant charging can damage the battery or shorten its life. This is the case with older models, especially since overcharging is risky. The batteries themselves are old and show signs of wear and tear.

On the other hand, new models have more robust batteries and improved software, making overcharging less critical, according to PCWelt. In particular, charging processes are stopped in time – the so-called trickle charging helps to keep the batteries fully charged with minimal energy jumps even at the slightest discharge. The notebook no longer draws power from the battery but directly from the mains.

Minimal wear
: However, even with the most modern laptops, two problems can arise: High voltage and heat. The load on the battery is less related to the current flow than the state of charge. With every percentage of payment, the voltage in the battery increases. This slows down its ageing. The ageing process is rapid when voltages are unusually high or low. The minimum wear is between 30 and 70 percent of the maximum charge.

But even without active use, energy storage devices lose charge independently. When connected to the power grid, these losses are immediately compensated for, and the battery is warmed up by regular microcharging. Wear is accelerated.

500 to 1,000 charge cycles
In general, however, laptops are not recommended to be constantly plugged in and unplugged to achieve the optimal charging window of 30 to 70 percent. The battery must always be charged or discharged and actively working. This can be more harmful than maintaining maximum capacity. Typically, lithium-ion batteries lose ability after 500 to 1,000 charge cycles. Therefore, storing them for mobile use is advisable when no power outlet is available.

If the battery can be removed, it is advisable to plug the device into a power outlet with the device turned off. If you use Windows 10 or 11, you can also use Smart Charge. This feature allows modern laptops to charge the battery to 80 percent of their maximum capacity even when the power connection is active.

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