Getting the Most Out of Your Battery (Mac)

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Using Your Battery

When the external power adapter is not connected, your computer draws power from its internal battery. The length of time that you can run your MacBook Pro depends on what you are doing on your Mac. Turning off features such as wireless technology and Bluetooth can help conserve battery charge, so can limiting the number of applications you have running.

Battery Icon on Menu

Battery Icon Mac.png


On all Macs, you can also see the percentage of your remaining battery life by selecting the battery icon near the upper right hand of your screen and clicking "Show Percentage" from the drop down menu. By default this setting is set to show time remaining on the battery.

When the battery level eventually drops below 95 percent, it will charge all the way up to 100 percent. Charging a battery when the power adapter is connected to your computer, the battery recharges whether the computer is off, on, or in sleep. However, the battery recharges more quickly if the computer is off or in sleep. When the computer is on, you can monitor the battery charge level using the battery status icon in the menu bar.

The battery charge level displayed is based on the amount of power left in the battery with the applications, peripheral devices, and system settings (display brightness, Energy Saver settings, and so on) you are currently using. To conserve battery power, close applications and disconnect peripheral devices not in use, and adjust your Energy Saver settings (see the next section).

Battery Conservation Tips

The amount of work time your MacBook Pro battery can provide before you need to recharge depends on the applications and peripheral devices you’re currently using and the steps you take to conserve power while you work. For the best conservation of battery power, do the following:

  • Disconnect bus-powered USB or FireWire devices when they are not in use.
  • Quit open applications that you are not using.
  • Turn off AirPort or Bluetooth wireless when they are not in use. (Use the AirPort and Bluetooth status icons in the menu bar. If these icons don’t appear in the menu bar, you can turn them on in the Network and Bluetooth panes of System Preferences.)
  • Disconnect CD and DVD drive when they are not in use.
  • Reduce screen brightness using the brightness controls on the keyboard.
  • Set the hard disk to sleep after a short time. In the Energy Saver pane of System Preferences, select the “Put the hard disk to sleep when possible” under the Battery option.
  • Set your laptop to sleep after inactivity of five minutes or less. This setting is also found in the Energy Saver pane of System Preferences.