GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - You're plugging away on social media, emails, and your favorite games when you get the warning: you are running low on battery charge for your smart phone.
Smart phone users are always looking for the best way to enhance that battery life. Target 2 Consumer Alert went to an expert to help you take charge of your phone.
We took our questions to Brett Baeirl, who is a Verizon manager at Camera Corner Connecting Point in Green Bay.
Tammy Elliott: "Should you drain your phone completely down to zero before charging?"
Brett Baeirl: "When batteries first started coming out to be rechargeable then we had to because they weren't lithium ion batteries. With lithium ion batteries it's not something we have to worry about. They're made to be charged hundreds and hundreds of times."
That lithium ion battery won't overcharge. Baeirl says it is OK to charge your phone overnight.
Brett Baeirl: "The phone itself is going to have a chip built into it. That will turn it off when it gets to 100 percent."
Tammy Elliott: "Do you want to avoid getting your battery too low?"
Brett Baeirl: "No. That doesn't matter, doesn't matter when you charge it."
The lower the battery life, the longer it will take to charge.
Brett Baeirl: "Our phones do have a lifecycle count, essentially. So what that means is every single time we charge our phone, it takes a little bit of the overall percentage of our battery life out. Now the percentage that takes out is very little.
Maybe after you've had your phone for three, four years, that's where people start to notice, well, my battery doesn't hold a charge as long as it used to."
Using your phone for streaming or gaming drains the battery more quickly.
Turning down your screen brightness will help extend the battery life.
Brett Baeirl: "The brighter the screen, the more power it's taking."
If you really need your phone to charge quickly, put it down.
Brett Baeirl: "Don't play on it. Don't be checking it. Just let it charge, because your screen is what uses the most battery on your phone."
If you are on the go: charging in the car is slower but it won't harm your battery.
External chargers are OK to use.
"Using those is the same thing as using a wall charger. The phone regulates how much power comes into it, so it's something that would be safe to use."
Baeirl says this is the most common questions he is asked:
"Why does it seem after two years my phone battery dies? That's what I get the most. 'They're trying to get me. They want me to buy a new phone.'
"And that's kind of one of the reasons we do upgrade every two years, because your average phone battery life is two to three years.
"It's a computer. We live on that thing. It's something we use every single day."
What it comes down to: If you need to use your phone, keep it charged.