Are you hoping to use your laptop while it’s plugged in, and want to know whether it’s safe to do so?
With laptops, you’ve got to really worry about things like heat and the lifespan of the battery, so it’s good to be concerned about this.
So, can you safely use a laptop while it’s charging, and what should you keep in mind while doing so? In this article, I’ll be covering everything that you need to know!
Can You Use A Laptop While It’s Plugged In And Charging?
Yes, it is completely safe to use a laptop while it’s charging in the vast majority of situations.
Manufacturers know that many people will use their laptop while it’s plugged in, and have taken steps to ensure that no damage will be done to your laptop while doing so.
In fact, many people use a laptop as sort of a replacement for a desktop – keeping it permanently plugged in, sitting at a desk! This is completely fine as well, and will cause absolutely no harm to the computer nor its battery life.
If it helps you feel any better, my own personal work laptop has been plugged in for over two years straight, and is still running near perfectly.
While there are some concerns to be aware of (especially if you are taking it off the charger regularly), it is very safe to use laptops while they’re being charged.
That being said, I still recommend reading the rest of this article so you can be aware of the fringe scenarios where it can be a concern.
Beware Of Heat, However
One thing that you do have to be aware of when using your laptop while it’s charging however, is heat.
While your battery is charging, it can generate a bit of extra heat that would otherwise not be present.
So, if you are using applications on your computer that normally generate a lot of heat anyway – like rendering video, or playing heavy games, you’ll want to be mindful of your computer’s internal temperature.
When a computer gets too hot, you’re at risk of permanently damaging its internal components.
While your computer should automatically shut off before it gets to that point, it’s still a good idea to be mindful of its temperature – especially if it’s charging.
Personally, I use and recommend HWiNFO, which is completely free.
What About Brand New Laptops?
This is another situation where it may be risky to use the laptop while it’s charging – at least right after you get it.
It’s possible that the brand new laptop has a completely dead battery. This means when you turn it on, it’s already at 0%. And even if you were to plug it in, it may not charge fast enough to remain on while you’re booting up.
Generally, it’s not good for a computer’s battery for it to completely hit zero, especially if it happens over and over again.
So, if your laptop is brand new – or you have managed to drain your current laptop all the way to 0% battery life, I recommend letting it charge for at least 5 minutes before you try turning it on.
While there’s no harm in using it while it charges up to full battery, you do want it to prevent it from losing power if you can.
Keep in mind that most laptops these days ship with a charge, so this may not be something you have to worry all that much about.
Isn’t The Battery At Risk Of Overcharging? Will It Affect My Battery’s Lifespan?
To many people the idea of leaving your laptop plugged in after it’s fully charged – especially if you leave it plugged in for extended periods of time, can be worrisome.
After all, shouldn’t this affect the laptop’s battery life? Wouldn’t this put it at risk of overcharging?
It turns out, when your battery is charged up to full capacity, your laptop actually stops using the battery at all while it’s plugged in.
Instead, it will draw its power directly from the charger, bypassing the need to use the battery completely. In essence, this makes it no different than a desktop computer, in the sense that it can be ran from the charger as long as you’d like without causing any damage whatsoever.
In fact, you don’t technically need your laptop’s battery at all. You can remove it completely, and run your laptop directly off of the charger if you’d like.
As long as the charger isn’t removed or you lose power, you wouldn’t even notice the difference!
Fortunately, it is certainly not bad to use your laptop while it’s charging. You could even leave it plugged in indefinitely, if you want to!
However, you should be mindful of the extra heat generated while your laptop’s battery is charging, and avoid using your computer when it’s at risk of shutting off.
I hope that this article cleared up some misconceptions, and helped you feel better about using your laptop while it’s plugged in.
If you have any other questions about your laptop or its battery, let me know via the comment form below and I’ll be happy to help.
Enjoy your computer,
– James McAllister