Why do laptop batteries stop charging at a certain percentage?


👤 Diwas Poudel    🕒 Jan 14 2023    📁 TECH

A few days ago, I noticed that my laptop stopped charging at 60%. I thought my charger died. The first thought I had was, “Damn, I’ll have to spend money on a charger now”. My second thought was, “How do I not spend that?”. This led me to realize, my charger was perfectly fine. It was just a feature called “Battery Protection”. Now, I have a Lenovo legion 5. It comes with an app called Lenovo Vantage.  This is one of those apps that come with the OS and are usually called bloatware. Bloatware is a useless application that only works to slow down the PC. However, this is one of the more useful apps. 

Now, how does this add up to the problem at hand? Well, this app has a feature called “Conservation mode”. If enabled, it caps the battery at 60%. Let’s understand what this is and how to enable or disable it.

What is Conservation mode?

Conservation mode is a feature built into a lot of laptops. However, it doesn’t come with all laptops. My legion 5 has it. Meanwhile, my friend’s Acer Nitro 5 doesn’t. This feature seems to be contradictory. We have a portable device. Wouldn’t it be best to have it at 100% at all times, no? Well, no. After a lot of research, I found out that batteries are best when kept at around 40%. This is the amount that batteries are shipped with. And it’s best to not charge the laptop more than 60%. 

Conservation Mode - Lenovo
fig. Conservation Mode - Lenovo

Do All Laptops have this feature?

Not all laptops have this feature. Not all chargers stop charging at a certain percentage. Some laptops, like the legion 5,Asus Vivobook are made to stop charging at some point. This is also called the “Battery Protection” feature. This is meant to prolong the battery’s lifespan. It is best to check your laptop’s model online or check the manual to see if this feature is available on your device.

What if my Laptop Doesn’t have this feature? 

If you are seeing that your laptop is not charging beyond a certain percentage. It is a good idea to take a look at this feature. If your laptop doesn’t have this feature, this can be a problem. There are a few battery-related issues that may cause a laptop to stop charging at a certain percentage. 

  1. Battery firmware
    The firmware that controls the battery charging may be outdated. This could cause the charging to stop at a certain percentage. The solution to this would be to update the firmware. This can be done by taking a look at the laptop’s website and see if any updates are available. 
  2. Battery malfunction
    If the battery is malfunctioning, it may not charge correctly and may stop charging at some point. This could be due to a problem with the battery cells or the battery management system. You’re better off contacting the manufacturer of your laptop’s battery. If under warranty, they are more likely to replace the battery and give you a functional one. 
  3. Hardware issues
    The charging port or the power supply may be damaged or malfunctioning. That might cause the charging to stop at a certain percentage. But this is very unlikely. If your charger or the port stops working, the laptop will stop charging at all. Not at a certain percentage.

It's worth noting that if the laptop is not charging at all. Or, if it's charging but the battery's capacity is not holding the charge, it might be a battery problem. And it's recommended to contact the manufacturer to get it checked.

How to solve laptop stop charging at 60% in Asus VivoBook?

One of my friends has an Asus VivoBook 14 and is experiencing a similar issue; let's look at how to address this on an Asus VivoBook.

  1. On your PC, look for MyAsus Application, as seen below.
    MyAsus Apps
     fig. Open MyASUS App
  2. Next, go to Customization > Power & Performance.
    If you have a problem, the radio button Maximum lifespan mode will be checked by default. "When you always plug in your charger, you can set the Maximum Lifespan mode to allow charging up to 60% to increase battery life cycle."
    Set maxium life mode ASUS
     fig. Set maximum life mode ASUS
  3. You only need to switch to Full capacity mode immediately. If you do this, the profile is set to standard, which allows for a complete 100% charge.
    FullCapacity Mode Asus
    fig. FullCapacity Mode Asus for 100% charging
  4. However, it is preferable to use Balance Mode, as recommended by the manufacturer.

How do solve the laptop stop charging at a certain percentage in Lenovo?

You will find similar options to Asus in your Lenovo, and you may resolve this issue by following the steps below.

  1. On your PC, look for Lenovo Application
  2. Under Power, you will find Conversation Mode, which might be checked on.
  3. Just toggle Conversation Mode to Off.
    Conservation Mode - Lenovo
    fig. set Conservation Mode to Off

Conclusion

While not a big issue, laptops not charging above a certain percentage can be very annoying. I keep this feature turned on in my laptop but I also carry my charger around everywhere I go. So, you can take this as a boon or a curse. It’s good to know that the battery on your laptop will last for a few more years. However, it’s also a pain to think that the laptop won’t be fully charged in case you need to be away from the charger for a while.

Article by: Adamya Neupane 

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