Why Does My iPhone Battery Die So Fast? Here’s The iPhone Battery Fix!

Why Does My iPhone Battery Die So FastI’m going to tell you exactly why your iPhone battery drains so quickly and exactly how to fix it. I’ll explain how you can get longer battery life out of your iPhone without sacrificing functionality! I don’t believe anyone should have to turn off every feature that makes the iPhone so enjoyable to use.

Take my word for it:

The vast majority of iPhone battery issues are software related.

And if you don’t believe me, read on.

Apple has created a website that explains their official stance on how to “optimize” your iPhone battery. Unfortunately, their instructions are rather wordy and don’t really get to the heart of the issue. In case you’re interested in checking that out, here’s a link to the official iPhone battery page on Apple’s website.

So why does my iPhone battery die so fast?

Here are 9 main reasons, in no particular order:

1. Push Mail

When your mail is set to push, it means that every second, your iPhone is connecting to the server and asking, “Is there mail? Is there mail? Is there mail? Is there mail? etc…” This constant flow of data drains your battery very quickly, and it makes sense if you think about it. The problem seems to be compounded for those of us who have Exchange servers set up on our phones.


The fix: Go to Settings -> Mail, Contacts, Calendars -> Fetch New Data -> and turn off Push. Scroll down to change Fetch to Every 15 Minutes and set each individual account to Fetch. The Mail app will still check for new mail every time it’s opened and send your messages right away.

If you have an Exchange server set up on your phone, get ready to jump for joy!

If you’ve been having issues with syncing contacts or calendars between your iPhone, iPad, and other devices, you’re not alone! I wrote a follow-up post that I hope will help a lot: Why Are Some Of My Contacts Missing From My iPhone, iPad, or iPod? Here’s The Real Fix!

A Word Of Warning: If You’re Messing With Your Contacts, Have A Backup (Just In Case)

If you go that route, it’s a good idea to have an iCloud Backup in place, just in case. If you’ve struggled with iCloud Backup before, check out my blog post called iPhone / iPad Hasn’t Been Backed Up In Weeks? Fix iCloud Backup! for simple instructions.


2. Location Services

Like I said, I’m all about using your phone. But there are a few services that you probably don’t know about that can constantly drain your battery. Go to Privacy -> Location Services -> and scroll all the way down to the last item, System Services. Tap on System Services to open that folder. Here’s what I suggest: Turn off Setting Time Zone if you don’t do a lot of travel, turn off Location-based iAds if you find Apple’s tracking your location to deliver you personalized ad content unnecessary, and turn off Diagnostics and Usage if you don’t think Apple needs to know exactly how you use your phone.

New in iOS 7 (and this is important), tap Frequent Locations at the bottom of the list. Yes, your phone has been tracking you everywhere you go. I personally don’t see a need for this feature and it uses a lot of battery because it is always tracking your whereabouts, so I’d suggest you turn it off.

After you’ve taken care of those pesky hidden services, make sure you turn on the location icon so you know when your location is being tracked. Not all apps are created equal. When an app uses location services, it drains the battery quickly, no matter how well the program was written. For example, I used to use Inrix Traffic, but stopped after I noticed it never stops using location services, even when it was in the background.


The other major piece of Location Services that Apple still hasn’t gotten correct is Location-Based Reminders. The long and short of it is, don’t use them. There is no way to make your battery last a long time if you do. This is one of those features that Apple released before perfecting and I’ve never seen anyone be able to get through a whole day on battery power when they were using that feature. It’s a cool idea, but it doesn’t work if your phone is completely dead.

Changing Mail from push to fetch and fixing your Location Services are huge battery life-savers, but there are other issues that are just as important to address. Click on Page 2 to keep going. We’re about to increase your battery life even more – and we’re just getting started.

A quick note from David: I would be very grateful if you would share this article on Facebook it if helps you. I make a significant portion of my income by sharing my knowledge like this and I am grateful beyond words for your support.

329 Comments

  1. Joel Saltzman
    February 12, 2014

    All very good advice. I don’t have battery issues as I follow most of your recommendations and always close background apps. Most importantly though, my Mophie case keeps me going for days. Mophie cases offer two settings. One basically discharges the Mophie case first, then the iPhone. When using this setting, the iPhone stays charged all day at 100%. Many days, I never even use the iPhone battery. The other option charges and drains the iPhone battery first. I don’t care about the Mophie case but don’t want to develop battery problems as I am rarely discharging my iPhone’s battery. I realize that devices don’t have the memory problems that plagued NiCad batteries. Does it hurt my iPhone to not be discharging it regularly?

    The other setting discharges the iPhone first and then the mophie recharges it.

  2. Geri-Lynn Kerr
    February 12, 2014

    Hello, thanks for the info on this. I’m having a problem after all the changes. I’m not receiving text nor are people receiving mine. Some are coming in and going out. iMessage was turned off. I turned it back on, but still having trouble with receiving and sending. Can you help with this problem please?

  3. Dawn Rietdijk
    February 13, 2014

    Thank you so much, not only for a wonderful article but for your gracious responses to comments. I’ve followed your instructions and had great results on my iPhone. Do you have similar advice to extend the battery life for my macbook pro? Thank you!

  4. LasvegasLily Belle
    February 14, 2014

    Thanks for all the info, but problem with my IPhone, sometimes while I’m using it the screen would turn dark but not off the phone is still on but you can’t see anything and after 10 or 15 minutes it’ll turn back on.
    Hopefully you have an idea about this. Thanks in advance and GOD bless for your kindness

  5. dkmaples
    February 15, 2014

    I have a problem that I need help with!! I went to the app store on my ipad and installed an app. I clicked on “open” and nothing happened. I went to settings and usage and it showed that I had it. I cannot find it nor am I able to open it by clicking on open. HELP!!! I looked on ICloud but it didn’t show anything there. Thanks for any help.

  6. Mary Linette Thaxton
    February 16, 2014

    My contract is up in May. I have a iPhone. I’m wanting the iPhone 4s & it only comes in a 16g or the 5. Which phone do you recommend. I see people get the 5 wish they stayed with the 4s. help please. Thanks Linette

    • iblong2jc
      February 16, 2014

      I have a 32 g with my 4s. Do they not offer them anymore?

  7. iblong2jc
    February 16, 2014

    Thank you so much for taking time to list the steps and to do so in such a user friendly manner. I have gone through and completed the actions you suggest but am now actually experiencing my battery dying even faster. Please help.

    Also, I went through and did what you suggested to not get the iCloud pop up about not enough storage. It worked the first time when I plugged in my 4s but now it is popping back up again. Please advise with that as well.

    Thank you and have a wonderful day!

    • David Payette
      February 16, 2014

      Hi Kim, Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment and I hope I can help. I’m very surprised to hear that your battery is dying faster after you’ve taken some of my suggestions. Nothing I suggested could possibly increase the strain on the iPhone’s battery, so I’d like to help you find out what actually went wrong and help you to resolve the issue.

      Try powering your phone off and turning it back on the right way like I describe in #5. How soon after you made the changes I suggest did your battery seem to get worse? One thing to check – do you have any Mail stuck in your Outbox? I met a woman whose phone was draining very quickly once due to a faulty outgoing email server setup and the phone was constantly trying to send this message but getting nowhere! Once we removed that email account and set it up again, there was no battery problem at all. In your case, it’s quite possible that you need to restore your phone to resolve an underlying software issue, and that’s a good segue to your second point about iCloud.

      You’ll need to backup your phone to iCloud, so please refer to my other post, This iPhone / iPad Hasn’t Been Backed Up In Weeks for simple instructions about how to resolve your issue. When you said it worked the first time but it is now popping back up again, if after you read my other blog post you continue to have that issue, please post any follow-up questions on that post and I’d be happy to help out.

      I assure you that the methods I describe in this post about how to save your iPhone’s battery life can have no negative impact on your phone’s battery life, and if you are experience something else, we’ve most likely stumbled upon a larger software issue. Thanks for reading and for reaching out to help. I’m sure we’ll get your issues resolved and you’ll be back enjoying your iPhone in no time!

      All the best, David P.

  8. AMac78
    February 16, 2014

    Great post, David. I just used your advice to good effect. One loose end about Camera Roll that I wanted to ask about…

    Problem: my daughter’s iPhone 5 sprouted gremlins over the past two weeks. The system time was wrong, apps would freeze at odd moments, SMS delivery was erratic… I couldn’t back up to iCloud; not enough space because the Camera Roll was too big. So, as in the posts Point 8, I turned off Camera Roll, and then the iCloud backup went smoothly. Following that, I backed up the iPhone to iTunes in my daughter’s account on our iMac. (PhotoStream wasn’t enabled when I did this, alas!).

    Erasing the iPhone and restoring it from the iCloud backup worked *great* — the gremlins are gone!

    Now, I’d like to restore the 300 Mb or so of jpeg photos, from the iMac’s iTunes, back onto the iPhone. From the comments to this post, Help screens, and Apple forums, I can’t see how to accomplish that. (I can see that going forward, I should turn on her PhotoStream and use that.) Alternatively — is there a folder on the iMac that contains the Camera Roll photos in unencrypted form? It’d be easy enough to take it from there.

    The main thing is, I resorted the functionality of the iPhone 5 by following the suggestions here. Thanks for writing them up and posting them!

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  12. Shawn Martin
    March 4, 2014

    I am confused about something. In # 5 it says not to hold down the sleep\wake button & home button at the same time for several seconds to do a hard reset. Yet on Apple’s website as well as others it says to hold down the sleep\wake button & the home button at the same for several seconds after you have fully charged to recalabrate the battery. This is contradictory information and I am confused as what to do

  13. patrigs3rd
    March 5, 2014

    Thank you…. your explanations were very helpful and easy to follow!!! ~ gp III

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  15. Debbie Brown Meier
    March 7, 2014

    Keeping the charge on my iphone and ipad to enable usage for on the road job has been the bane of my life! Coupled with being a baby boomer (middle aged) single female, which I do get treated as a dopey dora at times. I thank you so much for your excellent, easy to understand points and instructions. You are now my go to person. I cannot thank you enough!

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  17. Maureen Lewis
    April 6, 2014

    Do the suggestions you give for maximizing battery life on an iPhone also apply to my iPad? Which parts are true for both? Thanks!

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