How to make your iPhone battery last as long as possible

Rechargeable batteries are a consumable item and wear out over time. But you can help them last longer by not doing things that cause them to wear out faster.

Minutes after publishing my post "How long will your expensive new iPhone last?" I got an interesting question.

What's the best way to make sure my iPhone's battery lasts as long as possible?

Most people don't give much thought to charging. They stick the wire in, or pop the handset onto a charging pad, and away they go. But this might not be best for the battery.

So what should you do to make sure your iPhone's battery lasts as long as possible?

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First question is which charger to use? Should you use the bundled charger? The iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max come with an 18W fast-charger, while the others come with a 5W charger. If you have an iPhone that supports fast-charging, then it's worth getting a fast charger if you want to be able to boost the battery as fast as possible.

However, if you charge your iPhone overnight, then a slow charger works just fine, and might be better because it puts the least amount of stress on the battery.

Another factor is the charger itself.

The iPhone is an expensive piece of kit, and it really doesn't make sense to connect it to some shady dollar store charger or power bank. I recommend using Apple chargers, or buying a decent third-party charger or power bank (Amazon, Anker, RAVPower, and Zendure are all good brands).

As for cables, it doesn't make much of a difference, and if you use the Apple cable, or a good third-party cable (from the likes of Amazon or Anker, for example), then you'll be OK. Again, it makes sense to avoid cheap dollar store cables.

Another thing that helps keep the battery healthy is to keep charge times to a minimum. iOS 13 with its Optimized Battery Charging (I recommend keeping this feature turned on, unless you want a really fast charge) feature makes this less of a problem, especially when charging overnight, but don't be one of those people who keep their iPhone on charge all the time. Charging a battery causes stress, and charging it when it's already 80% charged really stresses it, so continually hammering at an almost fully-charged battery is not a good idea.

What about wireless charging? I'm not a massive fan of wireless charging because it creates a habit of keeping the iPhone on charge. Also, some wireless charging pads get quite hot, and this isn't good for the battery. I also find wireless charging rather unreliable, and moving the iPhone a little can stop the charging process. For the occasional charge -- say at lunchtime in the office -- they're OK, but for extended periods, such as overnight, it's not my preferred method.

It's also not a good idea to charge an iPhone if it's too hot (for example, baking in the sun, or in front of a hot car air vent), or really cold. A comfortable room temperature is the best environment in which to charge your iPhone.

So, to summarize:

  • Use a good charger and decent cable
  • Only charge when it needs charging
  • Don't charge if your battery is at 80% or over
  • Don't leave your iPhone on charge all the time
  • Don't charge the iPhone if it's too hot or too cold

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