As mobile phone costs continue to increase, most new iPhone buyers are hoping to get a few years worth of use out of each device. It is not uncommon for people to hold onto an iPhone for 4 or 5 years. In this article we take a look at some ways you can take better care of your iPhone to help you get the longest life out of it, keeping it going for many years to come.
Most of these tips pertain to the battery and how you charge your iPhone. This is because the battery is usually the first component to start packing up and one of the biggest reasons people land up getting a new iPhone. If your iPhone battery is already on its way out, there is good news, you can replace your iPhone battery yourself.
Keep Your iPhone Cool – Especially When Charging
Heat is one of the quickest killers of batteries and modern electronics, and the same holds true for your iPhone. Don’t leave your iPhone in a hot car, in the sun or in a place where it’s going to be kept hot for extended periods of time.
This also holds true when you’re charging your iPhone. Don’t charge it in confined or closed up spaces and if you’re using a bulky cover, get into a habit of removing it when charging your phone. The cover traps in the heat and reduces your iPhone’s ability to keep itself cool, reducing the life of the components and the battery.
You should also avoid wireless charging your iPhone too often. Wireless chargers are definitely a convenient way to charge your phone, and are becoming more prevalent in restaurants and airports, but you should avoid using them as your everyday charger as they also generate excess heat which in turn reduces the life of your battery.
Clean Your iPhone With A Microfiber Cloth
Keep your iPhone clean by periodically wiping it down with damp microfiber cloth. Unless your iPhone is really dirty, you shouldn’t need any chemicals. Harsh chemicals may damage the oleo-phobic coating on the display or the paint on the back and sides. If your device is heavily soiled or you’d like to give your iPhone a thorough clean, the best thing to use is eyeglass wipes which are stated as safe for use on anti-reflective coatings. These won’t damage the coating on your display or the finish on the back of your phone.
Avoid Charging Your iPhone Over 80%
Newer iPhones, running iOS 13 or later have a built in software function called optimised battery charging. This is a software feature which learns from your day to day charging habits and prevents your iPhone from charging to full capacity for extended periods or where it can get away with reduced charging. For example, if you leave your iPhone on charge overnight, it will only charge to 80% for most of the night even though its been left plugged in. Charging your battery to 100% puts it under stress, and the more stress placed on the battery, the shorter it’s lifespan will be.
If you don’t have this software feature, and just as a general rule, you should avoid charging your iPhone beyond 80% if you’re not going to need the full charge.
You can learn more about your iPhone’s battery health and what all the information means here.
Use Airplane Mode When Out Of Service
When your iPhone goes into an area where there is little or no phone service, it starts continuously “hunting” for reception. This causes your phone’s circuitry to work hardly and produces more heat, reducing the life of components and the battery. When you’re in an area which is known to have little or no reception, get into a habit of putting your iPhone into Airplane mode. This disables the transmitter and receiver and stops your iPhone from continuously searching for signal.
This can apply to being on an airplane, being in remote areas, underground or even on a cruise ship. If you have one bar or no signal at all then you should consider switching your phone to airplane mode until you’re back in a location with better reception.
Use The Buttons As Little As Possible
There’s a reason why Apple got rid of the home button, it was a common point of failure on their phones and anyone who has kept an iPhone for 4-5 years will likely have experienced one of the physical buttons, or the mute switch stop working.
Almost all of the functionality of the buttons and switch on your iPhone can be replicated through the software as well.
Use the auto-lock instead of the sleep/wake button, Assistive Touch instead of the TouchID/home button, turn off your iPhone from settings, adjust the volume using the slider in the Control Center, mute your phone using Do Not Disturb (although this will turn off vibrate as well).
If one of your buttons or your mute button has packed up, you can replace them yourself. Have a look at our guides on replacing your volume & mute button assembly or replacing your touchID sensor or home button.
Try To Keep At Least 1GB Of Storage Space Free
There is no clear answer from Apple on how their phones manage storage space and whether it is used as swap space to supplement RAM, but the general consensus is that iPhone’s tend to slow down when they have less than 1GB of free storage space. So you should try and remove any unused apps and content to keep a bit of space free. Upgrading to iOS 12 on older devices frees up quite a bit of space due to the switch to HEVC and HEIF encoding and you can use iCloud to free up some storage space used for photos and documents etc..
What are some of the ways in which you’ve managed to get the longest life out of your iPhone? Let us know how old yours is and what your tips and tricks are in the comments section below.