how_to_extend_the_lifeYou’re running late for that meeting. Donut in one hand and phone in the other, you run through the pouring rain to get to your car when your battery light starts flashing. “Plug in your charger,” your phone proclaims as you realize you forgot to charge it last night. With any luck, you’ll make it to the office where your backup charger is, but what if you don’t, and someone needs something?

Not having a charged battery can be incredibly stressful for even the most Zen of business people. These easy tricks can help extend those last few percentage points of your battery or, even better, prevent your phone from getting there in the first place.

Use Auto-Brightness or Dim Your Screen Manually

Most phones these days have light ambience sensors that detect how much light is in the environment at the time. While this setting can really help preserve your battery power, it’s even better if you dim your screen manually. The auto-sensor is excellent, but it often provides more light than you really need to see when it comes to texting, emailing, Facebooking or calling. Since you’re probably in the same environment most of the day, the best thing you can do is set it to a level that makes the most sense for your situation and won’t strain your eyes. If you leave your office or can’t see something clearly enough, a tap or two will brighten your screen for the minute or two you might need to see something better.

“App Refresh” Disabling

The smartest of today’s smartphones have something called “app refresh.” App refresh runs in the background and updates all of your applications for you 24 hours a day. Usually, this means that all of those games and other things you run on a daily basis have correct timestamps so that the next time the app is activated, your crops are ready to harvest. In addition, this is the mechanic that allows your weather application to show you the weather at the exact time you check it without having to refresh.

However, if you’re trying to conserve your battery, this is a great thing to turn off. In most phones, you’ll find “background app refresh” in your general settings menu, and you can disable the feature completely for all applications (or just the ones you don’t need updating at this very moment).

Consider Ways to Stay Off Of It

If you have to look at your phone for the time, buy a watch. If you need to look at the calendar again because you forgot what it said from when you checked it five minutes ago, buy a planner. We depend on our phones for a ton of different things, and if we make an effort to utilize other methods of keeping track of our lives, our batteries won’t drain nearly as quickly. Of course, you don’t need to have a watch or a planner every day, but for those days when you think you might need your battery power for that end-of-day meeting call or email, you might want to lay off using your phone as often as you usually do.

While nothing can prevent a battery from draining while the phone is on, these battery-saving tips sure can help slow the process.

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