Sunday, December 17

How to Squeeze More Juice Out of Your Portable Electronics

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Get More Power From Your Laptop

Most of us have been faced with the situation of having a laptop running dangerously low on battery juice only to find out we don’t have a charger on hand.

The solution: First quit all unnecessary programs and dim the energy sapping back-light to the lowest possible setting.

Then press Control+Option+Command+8 for Mac computers or LeftAlt+LeftShift+PrintScreen for PC’s.

This will invert the colors on your screen to mainly black. By removing most of the colors and decreasing the screens brightness it will lower the overall power consumption because of pixels requiring energy to light them up.

To return your screen to its normal setting, just press the same keys again. To turn off all power exhausting colors, activate the gray scale under the “display settings” option on your laptop.

Get More Photos From Your Digital Camera

It’s happened to all of us – just as your about to snap one of the best poses of the kids or the family pet, the camera’s battery light begins to blink.

The solution: Turn off the LCD screen which includes the playback and do not use the zoom or flash. It takes a ton of energy to light up the screen and is a big energy waster, as are the mechanics which control the flash and zoom.

TIP: In cold weather, keep the camera or battery close to your body when it’s not being used. The battery is stressed in extreme cold weather and has a higher internal resistance. This shortens the life of the battery due to it having to work harder.

Get More MInutes on Your Cell Phone

The next time you are expecting a call and your low-battery alarm goes off, take your cell phone out of your purse or pocket and keep it away from the direct sunlight.Why should you do this? The warmer the battery is in your cell phone, the faster the electron movement.

If your cell phone is in a real warm environment such as on your dashboard in the car on a hot day, the rate of self-discharge increases, causing the battery to drain much faster.

TIPS: Other energy-sappers are the vibrate mode, keypad tones and any open applications such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and e-mails.

Get More Songs for Your MP3 Player

To squeeze out another couple of songs on your MP3 player, chose a play-list or album.

Switching back and forth between songs causes the player to use power searching for each file and browsing through songs activates the back-light which is a real energy drainer. But MP3 players can “cache” play-lists or albums, storing the data in such a way that allows the hard drive to retrieve it faster and with far less battery power.

TIP: Keep the volume on the MP3 player as low as possible. The higher the volume, the more power it requires to transmit the sound.

Get More Clicks From Your TV Remote

Have you ever just sat down to catch up on your backlog on your DVR only to find out the remote control batteries are low? What’s the point of recording if you can’t fast forward through the commercials?

The solution: Remove the batteries and place them under your knee to warm them up for a few minutes. Since alkaline batteries have a high internal resistance, keeping them warm will decrease that resistance so the power can flow through uninhibited, making them last longer.


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