Extending your notebook’s battery life. Modern Mac notebooks have a very good battery life. Indeed, they should last all day on a single charge. Even so, there comes a time when you’re running low on power and need to keep your MacBook going, but what can you do? Follow these simple tips and you can squeeze every ounce of energy from your notebook battery.
Turn Down the Screen Brightness
The screen is a huge drain on the battery but you can reduce how much power it uses by turning down the brightness. You can use the function keys or touch bar, or open System Preferences, go to the Displays preference pane and use the Brightness slider.
Turn Time Machine Off
Time Machine backups also use power. If you’re running low, consider turning it off until you get to a charger. In System Preferences, open Time Machine and uncheck Back Up Automatically. Don’t forget to turn it on again when your battery is charged.
Silence the Notifications
Incoming notifications can have an adverse effect on battery life. Click the three-lined icon in the top right corner to open the notifications panel and click the Notifications tab at the top. Pull the panel down to reveal the Do Not Disturb switch, and activate it.
Energy Saver Preferences
Open up System Preferences, then Energy Saver. There are a number of tweaks you can make here, including dimming the screen on battery power, turning off the display quicker whilst the notebook is idle and turning off the Power Nap feature.
Check Activity Monitor
Activity Monitor is found in Applications > Utilities. If you simply click the Energy tab and then the Energy Impact header, you can order the list of apps according to how much energy they’re using. Turn off anything that’s using more than it should.
Turn Off Location Services
Location Services uses power because it uses Wi-Fi connections to locate its current position. To switch it off, go to System Preferences > Security & Privacy, click the Privacy tab then click the lock and put in your password. Uncheck Enable Location Services.
Turn Bluetooth Off
If you’re not currently using Bluetooth, turn it off. In System Preferences, go to Bluetooth and click the Turn Bluetooth Off button. You won’t be able to use Bluetooth peripherals such as wireless headphones until you turn it on again but it saves energy.
Turn Wi-Fi Off
If you’re not using it, you can turn Wi-Fi off by clicking on the its icon in the menu bar and selecting Turn Wi-Fi Off. Obviously, you won’t be able to use the Internet until you switch it on again but it saves battery power if you can do without it.
Disconnect Unused Peripherals
Connected peripherals also use battery power. If you have a peripheral connected and don’t currently need it, unplug it. If you’re working on files stored on an external hard drive, consider moving them to your MacBook and disconnecting the drive.
Using Significant Energy
Finally, there’s a useful way of seeing which open applications are using significant energy. Just click the battery in the menu bar. Close anything that’s hogging your battery power and obviously, shut down anything you don’t need to keep open too.
You can find this guide, and many more like it, in The Complete MacBook Manual – Vol 13