You just charged your Apple iPhone. But to your surprise, it went kaput right away.
I know it’s annoying. Like you, I’ve asked, “Why is my battery health going down so fast?”
In a nutshell, this iPhone battery drain is caused by several factors. I’ll discuss these – and how to improve your device’s battery health – below.
Let’s get started!
Why is My iPhone Battery Health Going Down Fast?
According to Apple Support, this happens because of the following factors:
1. Chemical Aging
Apple devices, like many others, run on Lithium-ion batteries. As they age, the charge they hold reduces. As a result, your phone’s battery capacity depletes faster than it did before.
Although this is the case, iPhone batteries are designed to retain an 80% capacity even after 500 charging cycles.
Chemical aging also results in impedance, meaning the battery is no longer able to supply the phone with power like it used to.
2. Extreme Temperatures
If you keep your phone in a hot environment – then it won’t last as long. According to Intercel, battery life is cut in half for every 15OF-increase over 77OF.
Unfortunately, being in a colder environment won’t do you any good, either. This will only increase battery impedance, essentially keeping your phone in a low state of charge.
Now if your phone isn’t that old – and you’re pretty sure that you’ve protected it from temperature extremes – then connections may be to blame.
If your WiFi, Bluetooth, Cellular Data, and Location Services are always on, then your phone’s battery will run out faster than if they’re turned off.
4. App Usage
Let’s face it: most of us forget to ‘terminate’ the apps we are no longer using. If they’re running in the background, then they’ll zap out your battery for sure.
How to Optimize Battery Charging and Phone Life
Although there’s nothing much you could do about battery age, you could keep your iOS devices running longer simply by following these easy fixes:
1. Utilize Low Power Mode
As the name suggests, it’ll make your phone run at ‘low power’ by reducing display brightness (after inactivity) and preventing background app refresh, among many other things.
This is actually my go-to technique, even if my iPhone’s battery is still above 20%.
You could activate Low Power Mode by commanding Siri, or you can do it manually by going to the Settings app. Tap Battery and enable the Low Power Mode option.
2. Reduce Screen Brightness
A bright screen is essential if you’re under the sun or if you’re in a glaring room. However, it can drain your phone’s battery in no time.
Unless you direly need it, you can always reduce the brightness by going to the Control Center. Another option is to go to Settings > Display & Brightness.
Tip: If you don’t want to change your screen brightness every so often, you can always enable the Auto-Brightness setting. That way, your phone adjusts the display according to lighting/environment.
3. Use the Dark Mode Feature
Dark Mode provides more than just an enhanced viewing experience in low light. It can also improve battery life, for, as mentioned, a brighter screen will drain power right away
This feature is available in phones with iOS 13, such as:
- iPhone X,
- XS Max
- 11 Pro
- 11 Pro Max
- iPhone 12 mini
- iPhone 12
- 12 Pro
- 12 Pro Max
To enable Dark Mode, go to Settings. Tap Display & Brightness and choose ‘Dark.’
4. Adjust Notifications
A flood of notifications is not just bothersome – it can limit your battery’s full performance too. After all, getting notifications means using connections – and brightening the screen, among many other things.
To change your Notification status, go to Settings > Notifications. Go through the apps and change their notification options as you deem fit.
5. Modify Auto-Lock Settings
Your iPhone’s display will remain on as long as you’re using the phone. However, it’ll turn off in quite a while. This feature is aptly named auto-lock.
Now, keeping your phone’s display on for longer – as is the case when you’re using Maps – is recommended. But if you’re not actively using an app, this feature can end up draining your phone’s battery life.
You can modify your auto-lock settings by going to Settings > Display & Brightness > Auto-Lock. Here, you can modify the lock time to 30 seconds (or more, as needed.)
Tip: If your iPhone is in low-power mode, you don’t have to fiddle with this option. This will keep your display’s auto lock at a measly 30 seconds.
6. Manage App Activity
If your phone’s normal peak performance has reduced greatly, then you should go check your apps.
Some run in the background, while some use Bluetooth or cellular data at an alarming rate. As a result, they can end up zapping your battery life right away.
To find out who these culprits are, go to Settings > Battery. Here, you’ll see which apps have zapped out your phone’s juice in the last 24 hours/10 days.
If there are battery-draining apps that you don’t use, it’ll be wise to uninstall them right away.
7. Limit Background App Refresh Services
Although you’re not using some apps right now, they can refresh automatically. As a result, they end up emptying your battery (and sadly, your data allowance too.)
The good news is you can turn off this option – or allow just a handful of apps to do so. You can do so by heading to Settings > General > Background App Refresh.
8. Modify Location Services
As the name suggests, location services enable websites and programs to determine where you are. While it’s helpful, it can reduce battery life significantly.
To limit location services and save juice, go to Settings. Tap Privacy > Location Services. Here, you can modify each app’s location usage to:
- Ask Next Time
- While Using the App
As ‘Always’ will drain your battery the most, only retain this setting for apps that need it. But, if you ask me, the ‘Ask Next Time’ and ‘While Using the App’ options should suffice.
9. Limit Bluetooth Access
As I’ve discussed above, connections such as Bluetooth can reduce your phone’s maximum capacity. So to prevent this from happening, you’ll want to modify your apps’ Bluetooth access.
It’s only a matter of going to Settings > Privacy > Bluetooth.
Disable the access for several apps, except, say, for that your AirPods and/or Apple Watches.
10. Change Mail Fetch Settings
Your email inbox updates itself regularly, which is good if you need to get hold of those new messages right away. But if you want to save your battery life, then you may want to turn this option off.
All you need to do is go to Settings > Mail > Accounts. Tap on ‘Fetch New Data’ and turn off ‘Push.’
You can also manipulate the settings to change the data fetch from ‘Automatic’ to ‘Manual,’ ‘Every 15 Minutes,’ or ‘Every 30 Minutes.’
11. Deactivate Automatic Downloads and Updates
When you download or update apps, you end up fixing bugs and improving the security of your phone. But, as with most actions in this list, doing so automatically can drain your phone’s battery life.
If you’d rather update your phone manually, go to Settings > General > Software Updates. Tap ‘Automatic Updates’ and turn it off.
12. Use WiFi Instead of Cellular Data
If you have ready access to WiFi, use it instead of your Cellular Data. Not only will this cut data charges for streaming or automatic downloads, but it will also keep your iPhone running longer too.
13. Turn on Airplane Mode in No/Low-Signal Locations
If you find yourself in an area where the cellular signal is dead (or spotty at best), then you should turn the Airplane mode on.
See, this feature turns off most wireless features – except Bluetooth. As such, it prevents your phone from draining its battery by repeatedly seeking out a signal. Of course, I only recommend this in situations where you don’t require cellular service.
14. Enable Optimized Battery Charging
As I’ve explained above, chemical aging can seriously affect your phone’s peak performance capability. However, you can extend your present battery’s lifespan with optimized charging.
With this setting, your iPhone gets to know your charging schedule – so that it can wait until it charges up to 80%. As a result, battery aging is greatly reduced.
If your battery capacity is already below 80%, it will be wise to get a battery replacement right away.
Tip: Do note that you can get this replacement for free if your battery is still under the one-year warranty – or if you have purchased AppleCare+ from your service provider.
Your phone’s battery health can go down quickly because of chemical aging, extreme temperatures, connections, and app usage.
To prevent the battery from getting drained – and to avoid unexpected shutdowns along the way, you can utilize low power mode, reduce screen brightness, and limit app or connection usage, among many other things.
Do you have more questions about iPhone battery health? Just post a comment below and I’ll be more than happy to reply!