General Question

didi's avatar

Do you turn off your laptop at night?

Asked by didi (11points) April 29th, 2011

I have been turning my laptop off every night since I got it about 1.5 years ago. Although I use it every day, my logic is that it conserves long-term battery life and doesn’t waste as much energy. My roommate keeps his laptop on overnight, every night. This is more convenient, as he doesn’t have to wait for it to reboot in the morning.

Are there any stats as to how much energy it saves or whether it really is better for the life of the battery?

What do you do? Why?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

28 Answers

WasCy's avatar

Welcome to Fluther.

It’s best for the battery to use it frequently, draining it deeply and then recharging fully. I generally keep my personal machine on standby / sleep mode overnight, for most door-to-door travel (between work and home and vice versa) and for the several hours (tops) that I may need it while at work. I only charge it when I get it home. I keep the thing running that way until something else makes me reboot.

Your manual for the machine may give you some additional guidance.

Response moderated (Writing Standards)
c's avatar

I only shut down my laptop when it needs to update or something. I usually hibernate it overnight, unless I have something like a disk defragmentation scheduled (I always schedule stuff like this when I am away from the desk and not using my laptop so that when I am using it I can do more (cough) productive (cough) stuff.

If you leave your laptop on overnight when it’s not doing anything useful then it’s just a waste of energy. Put it on suspend/sleep mode at least (uses less power), or even better – use the hibernate mode, which is like a mix of shut down and sleep mode (all your applications stay open but it takes longer to resume than sleep)

Seelix's avatar

I don’t shut it down, but I close it, which puts it into sleep mode or whatever. I don’t generally use it on battery power, so that’s not an issue for me.

Mariah's avatar

I turn it off because the small outside lights that are lit when the computer is on/sleeping are obnoxious in my room at night when I want it dark. I’d be interested in those stats, too, if anyone finds them.

Neurotic_David's avatar

My gaming machine is Windows 7. I leave it on 24×7x365. My (work) laptop is a Mac, and I keep it plugged in and on 24×7x365. I haven’t had a problem in numerous generations of these machines.

dabbler's avatar

I shut any of my computers down when I know I’m not going to use it for a few hours.
It just doesn’t seem to take that long to boot any of these critters.
A lot of machines don’t wake up that well from ‘sleep’ or ‘hibernate’ or I’d maybe use that more often. (... the apples do)
@Mariah good point about the lights – and the power usage implied behind them. The bedroom here doesn’t have any electronics for that reason. The rest of the place has blinky flashy all over the place and is both fun and sad to consider all the gadgets that are still standing by at night (cordless phones, ethernet switches, appliances).

Paul's avatar

I tend to turn it off overnight, force of habit I guess :/

DominicX's avatar

Always. My old Dell was very slow toward the end, so I got in the habit of hibernating it instead of shutting it down so I wouldn’t have to wait for it to start up. But my current computer has an SSD, so it takes like 30 seconds to start up. I always shut it down (and I did the same with my Mac).

YARNLADY's avatar

I usually do a full shut down of my computer, because it sometimes shuts itself off, and I don’t like when that happens.

knitfroggy's avatar

I just shut my laptop at night. I rarely use the battery, it’s always plugged in.

blueiiznh's avatar

I shut my laptop down when i am done. This is mostly to conserver its life and to be on a fresh reboot when i turn it on in the morning.

HungryGuy's avatar

I only use my laptop when I travel. And when I travel, I’m like @Mariah. I like to sleep in a totally dark room. So I turn off my laptop at night for the same reason. The lights just annoy me.

And in my house, I have black electrical tape over all the idiot lights on all the electronics in my bedroom. My regular computer isn’t in my bedroom, so I usually leave it on unless I’m going to be away for a few days; then I turn it off and even unplug it (including everything else like the printer, router, cable modem, etc.).

jaytkay's avatar

I killed a li-on battery by leaving it plugged in for a couple of years.

Now I remove the battery when I use it at my desk. I only use the battery outside the office.

Coloma's avatar

Yep, always. I sometimes leave it in sleep mode for a few hours, but, think it’s good to give it a rest.

dxs's avatar
This link helps, especially the second list. Pay close attention to #1 and #7. Also, the standby/hibernate comparison may help as well.

sliceswiththings's avatar

I’ve started turning it off at night because I’ve been having insomnia, and I’m hoping that eliminating the constantly growing and shrinking light from it will help.

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

No. If I’m not downloading something or whatever to keep it awake, it’ll go into sleep mode. But otherwise, I have to deal with turning it on, fully, right at the beginning of class the next morning, which, get real (am I right?).

dxs's avatar

I know that when something is plugged in, it is constantly drawing energy, so that’s why I unplug alot of things. For my laptop, I don’t use its battery a lot. When I do, it never lasts long (never has——only about 1½-2 hours).
I think imma turn my laptop off tonight…

Brian1946's avatar

I usually hibernate my desktop pc when I go to bed and when I leave my house.
I put it on standby when I take a shower.

cloudvertigo's avatar

Ugg, the never ending reboot time for a pc – updates, relaunching the little dodads in the taskbar. . . Still, while the computer is booting up I usually grab a glass of water or put groceries away – something else for a minute or two. For me the wasted power and computer life doesn’t make sense. It’s like leaving your car running overnight. Siberia and Wisconsin aside, it gives me a sense of finality too—as though I had shut my door to the internet for the evening and turned out the light.

Still, maybe you have to defrag a lot or have downloads to make when you’re not using the cpu? Also, if you must, I would mention that you can relegate the unused cpu power to science.

cheebdragon's avatar

I never really turn mine off, I just have it set to go into standby when I close it.

seekingwolf's avatar

I put it into “hibernate”. It’s essentially off though. The only difference is that it saved what I was doing/where I was from the last session.

BarnacleBill's avatar

I shut it off in the morning when I leave for work, but turn it back on at night, and leave it on.

rooeytoo's avatar

MacBook – I never shut it down, it goes to sleep when it is not being used. About once a week I reboot or if it starts to act strangely and about once a month I use it on battery only and run it down completely. The rest of the time it is plugged into AC unless I am traveling.

jerv's avatar

I put mine to sleep when not in use and only reboot as needed, and don’t leave it plugged in for too long after the battery hits 100%. I monitor my battery wear and it is not significantly different from the natural degradation of a Li-Ion battery in storage at the same temperatures.

Note that a Li-Ion battery will lose capacity over time regardless of usage, though high temperatures and storing it fully charged as opposed to half-charged will accelerate the process. At 77F, a fully charged Li-Ion battery will lose about 20% of it’s capacity per year as opposed to 4% if stored at 50% charge at the same temperature. However, laptop use will push the temps higher and the degradation rates at 104F are 35% and 15% respectively. many laptops can get close to those temps in part due to high amp draw and also because the rather warm CPU isn’t far away.

My last laptop lost ~15% of it’s capacity over the course of 15 months, or about 1%/month. Considering my usage pattern, that isn’t bad. In fact, that is slightly better than can be expected under those conditions.

Note that keeping it plugged in and thus fully charged all the time will kill it relatively quickly, as @jaytkay knows all too well.

@dxs Nice link!

markylit's avatar

Yes, i always shut it down before i go to sleep every night. I think leaving it on is simply wasting energy.

t_p's avatar

sleep it

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther