Why Is My iPhone Battery Draining So Fast? 10 Easy Fixes (Feb 2023)

Stop iPhone battery drain with these ultra-simple tips.

What to Know

  • iPhone battery drain can be avoided by stopping unnecessary background processes and disabling power-hungry features.
  • The most common (and sneaky!) causes of battery drain are screen brightness and having location services enabled for too many apps.

Why is your iPhone battery draining so fast all of a sudden? Does the iOS 16 update drain your battery life? If your iPhone loses battery faster than you'd like it to or faster than you think is normal, we can help. We'll answer common iPhone battery drain questions, and walk you through some simple solutions to stop your iPhone battery from dying fast.

Jump To:

Why Is My iPhone Dying So Fast? iOS 16 Battery Drain & Other Issues

Are you wondering why your iPhone battery dies so fast? Is your iPhone losing charge after updating to iOS 16? You're not alone. iOS update battery drain issues are extremely common and for good reason! A new iOS update drains battery because of the many big changes to your iPhone features that come with installing the most recent iOS software. The larger fall updates, like the recent iOS 16 update, often affect your iPhone battery more than the smaller updates we see throughout the year.

While some of this is unavoidable, there are certain things you can do to optimize your battery use and cut back on unnecessary iPhone battery drain. We'll show you some iOS 16 battery-saving tips and offer guidance on how to preserve battery life on your iPhone.

How to Save Battery on iPhone

First, we'll cover how to quickly check your battery health. Odds are, your iPhone battery is fighting fit, but is being drained by unneeded processes running in the background. We'll cover some easy solutions to prevent battery drain from iOS 16 on your iPhone. Also, If you enjoy learning about how to use your Apple devices, be sure to sign up for our free Tip of the Day

1. Check Your iPhone Battery Health Suggestions

This is a good first step whether you're worried that the iPhone update is draining the battery or not. Your iPhone will recommend specific changes in Settings to preserve iPhone battery life. To see why your iPhone battery is draining faster than it should be, use these steps to check Battery Health suggestions:

  1. Open the Settings app, then scroll down and tap Battery.

  2. Tap Battery Health.

On the next screen, your iPhone will suggest changes to settings that will improve battery life. You can tap on each suggestion to jump to the setting that needs changing. If you don't want to make the change, at least you understand what's contributing to your battery drain. 

Note: If you don't see the Battery Life Suggestions section, your iPhone doesn't currently see any ways to improve battery life via Settings.

However, we'll have to respectfully disagree—there's almost always a way to fix iPhone battery drain. Continue on down the list to see how many ways you can fix an iPhone battery dying faster than it should.

2. Dim Your iPhone Screen If Your iPhone Keeps Losing Charge

Keeping your iPhone's screen at full brightness is a likely culprit when your iPhone battery drains fast, but it's easily remedied. This is actually one of the main causes of battery drain and consumes more power than you might think! Here's how to dim the screen brightness to save battery on your iPhone:

  1. Open the Control Center by swiping down from the top-right corner of the screen. If your iPhone has a Home button, swipe up from the bottom of the screen instead.
  2. Tap and drag the Brightness slider toward the bottom, or as near to the bottom as you can go and still comfortably read your display.

    reduce iphone screen brightness in control center

If you have your iPhone brightness set to a more reasonable level but your iPhone battery is draining quickly anyway, there are a lot more options for conserving battery on iPhone. Keep reading!

3. Turn on Auto-Brightness to Stop iPhone Battery Drain

Auto-Brightness settings adjust your screen lighting automatically based on ambient light levels. This keeps your iPhone from losing battery too quickly by wasting it on unnecessary screen brightness. To save battery on your iPhone by enabling Auto-Brightness:

  1. Open the Settings app, then scroll down and tap Accessibility

  2. Tap Display & Text Size.

  3. Scroll to the bottom and toggle on Auto-Brightness.

Next, we'll take a look at some lesser-known settings to help improve iPhone battery life.

4. Turn Off Raise to Wake to Save iPhone Battery

All iPhone models have the Raise to Wake function enabled by default. This might be part of your problem, especially if you pick up your iPhone a lot or walk with it swinging in your hand. The iPhone screen constantly turning on will definitely drain your battery. To turn off Raise to Wake to save iPhone battery life:

  1. Open the Settings app, then scroll down and tap Display & Brightness.

  2. Scroll down to Raise to Wake and toggle it off. A gray toggle means Raise to Wake is disabled.

Once you've disabled this feature, you just have to tap your iPhone to wake it. Now that we've covered brightness settings that help prevent battery drain on iPhone, we can move on to things like apps that drain iPhone battery.

5. Update Apps to Keep Your iPhone Battery from Dying Fast

Apps that need updates kill iPhone battery health. iOS update battery drain often has to do with apps. When new software is released, such as the iOS 16 update, developers have to play catch-up too. Apps that need updates may run inefficiently, or accidentally run operations in a way that's counterproductive to the way it should be done on the most current iOS software. If you don’t automatically update apps on iPhone, taking the time to update all the available apps on your list could seriously help with iPhone battery drain! Here's how to update apps to avoid battery drain on your iPhone:

  1. Open the App Store and tap your account icon in the upper-right corner of the screen.

  2. Tap Update All, then tap Done in the upper-right corner.

Do iPhone widgets drain battery? We'll take a look at that next.

6. Remove Widgets to Stop iPhone Battery from Draining

Do widgets drain the battery on iPhones or iPads? Yes, but not all of them cause as much iPhone battery drain as others. If your iPhone battery is dying too quickly, consider getting rid of any widgets you don’t need.

If your battery is dying fast on your iPhone, try removing unnecessary widgets with the steps below:

  1. Open the Today View by swiping right on the Lock screen or swiping all the way right on your Home screen, one screen past the first Home screen page.
  2. Scroll to the bottom and tap Edit.

    iphone today view
  3. If you started from the Lock screen, you’ll need to unlock your phone to make changes.
  4. Tap the Remove icon next to any widgets you'd like to remove.

    delete widgets from today view
  5. For widgets on your Home screen pages, long press the screen until it enters Jiggle mode.
  6. Tap the Remove icon on widgets you'd like to remove.

  7. Tap Done in the upper-right corner when you're finished removing widgets.

7. Try Restarting If Your iPhone Is Dying Really Fast

Restarting your device is troubleshooting 101. If you ever have any issue with a device, Apple-made or otherwise, a simple restart almost always helps. Restarting your iPhone probably won’t fix the problem of battery drain completely, but it’s likely to give it a bit of a boost. 

How to Restart Your iPhone X or Later:

how to restart iphone x and later
  1. Hold down the Side button and the up or down volume button.
  2. Drag the Power Off slider to turn your iPhone off.
  3. Wait a minute, then hold the Side button again until the Apple logo appears and release. 

How to Restart Your iPhone 8 or Earlier, or iPod Touch

how to restart iphone 8 and earlier
  1. Hold down the Top or Side button until Slide to Power Off appears on the screen.
  2. Slide the slider to power off the iPhone.
  3. Wait a minute, then hold the Top or Side button again until the Apple logo appears, and release. 

8. Turn Off Background App Refresh to Save iPhone Battery Life

Background App Refresh allows your apps to check for new content and update even when you’re not using them. This is intended to save you loading time when opening up apps, as the latest information should be ready and waiting after being refreshed in the background. However, allowing all your open apps to continually update and refresh in the background is a sure-fire way to drain your iPhone battery. Here's how to turn off Background App Refresh to keep your iPhone from losing charge:

  1. Open the Settings app, then scroll down and tap General.

  2. Select Background App Refresh, then tap Background App Refresh again.

  3. Select Off.

9. Adjust Location Services to Fight iPhone Battery Drain Issue

Location Services is another sneaky feature that could explain why your iPhone is losing charge. Lots of different apps want to know and use your location for various legitimately useful reasons, but most of them don’t need to track your location when you aren't using the app. You can quickly go through your apps and choose whether they can use your location Always, While Using the App, Ask Next Time, or Never. If the app never needs your location, feel free to select that. For most apps, it makes the most sense to allow Location Services only while using the app. To do this:

  1. Open the Settings app, then scroll down and tap Privacy.

  2. Tap Location Services.

  3. Select individual apps to choose when Location Services can be used.

  4. If the app never needs to know your location to be fully functional, go ahead and select Never.
  5. You can also choose to toggle off Precise Location if the app does not need to know exactly where you are.

10. Place Your iPhone Face Down to Stop Battery-Draining Notifications

When your iPhone is facing up, the screen illuminates whenever you receive a notification. If you receive a lot of notifications, they could easily be part of why your iPhone battery drains faster than you'd like it to, especially since notifications in iOS 16 are rich, meaning you can see conversations, images, and more directly from the Lock screen. Instead of letting the screen light up and drain iPhone battery life every time you get a notification, simply leave your phone face-down when not in use. Trust me; it works surprisingly well!

11. Turn On Low Power Mode to Stop the Battery Dying Fast on Your iPhone

Not everyone is aware of the iPhone battery-saving powers of Low Power Mode. Sure, we’d love our iPhone battery life to last forever without it, but when you have three more hours until you can charge your iPhone and your iPhone battery percentage is at 30 percent, Low Power Mode is an iPhone battery life saver. To turn on Low Power Mode, you can activate Siri and say, “Turn on Low Power Mode.” Alternatively, you can turn on Low Power Mode manually in the Control Center, as demonstrated below.

  1. Open the Control Center by swiping down from the upper-right corner of your screen. If your iPhone has a Home button, swipe up from the bottom of the screen instead.

  2. Tap the battery icon to enable Low Power Mode. When the icon is white, Low Power Mode is enabled.

12. Turn On Reduce Motion to Stop Battery Drain on Your iPhone

Another issue that can be the cause of iOS update battery drain is an increase in animations that come with new software features. If you’ve been enjoying the interesting effects (fireworks and confetti, anyone?) and reactions in the Messages app, you’re using animations that require lots of iPhone battery life. While the flashy features of the Messages app might be fun, they’re sure to cut into the amount of time your iPhone can stay alive. Beyond the Messages app, the iPhone has animations for everything. Simply switching from an app to the Home screen has its own animation. Each animation may not use much battery life, but the little bit each transition uses adds up quickly. To turn on Reduce Motion and stop iPhone battery drain from these small animations:

  1. Open the Settings app, then scroll down and tap Accessibility.

  2. Tap Motion, then toggle on Reduce Motion.

  3. Toggle on Prefer Cross-Fade Transitions

  4. While you're on this page, you can also toggle off Auto-Play Message Effects and Auto-Play Video Previews to save even more battery life. 

13. Use Airplane Mode or Wi-Fi to Stop Battery Drain in Low Reception Areas



If a secure Wi-Fi network is available, log into it rather than using your cellular data plan. Also, if you are out and about in a location with poor cellular reception, having your iPhone constantly searching for a cell signal leads to your iPhone draining battery faster than you may realize. To prevent iPhone battery drain, open the Control Center by swiping down from the upper-right corner of your screen. If your iPhone has a Home button, swipe up from the bottom of the screen instead. Next tap on the Airplane mode icon which, logically enough, looks like an airplane. When the icon is orange, Airplane mode is enabled, and your iPhone will not continue searching for a Wi-Fi or cellular signal.

FAQ

  • What kills iPhone battery the most?
    The factor that many experts agree has the biggest effect on iPhone battery life is screen brightness. Fortunately, this is also one of the easiest things to adjust! With a combination of keeping your phone face down when not in use, using the auto-brightness feature, and generally being okay with a dimmer screen (you may be surprised how much easier it is on your eyes), you'll save a huge amount of battery. Another top iPhone battery drain is app activity. You can check which apps use the most battery within your iPhone Settings. 
  • How do I maximize battery life on my iPhone?
    The tips in this article are mostly geared toward short-term iPhone battery drain, but what about battery life and battery lifespan? It's important to know how to make your iPhone battery last longer, and how to keep it functioning well for years to come. We can help with that, too!
  • Is it safe to charge my iPhone overnight? 
    Believe it or not, this is actually bad for your iPhone's battery! There are quite a few reasons for this, but most of them have to do with how the lithium-ion batteries in our iPhones age. Fortunately, Optimized Battery Charging introduced in iOS 13 aims to mitigate battery wear to maintain its lifespan. It works by reducing the time your iPhone spends fully charged while connected to power during overnight charging. When the feature is enabled, your iPhone will charge to 80 percent during the night and then quickly charge the last 20 percent right before you wake up. We go into more detail about this feature below!
  • What is Optimized Battery Charging? 
    Optimized Battery Charging protects your iPhone's battery by limiting or preventing the kind of aging that occurs when a lithium-ion battery is held at 100 percent charge. Essentially, it uses an algorithm to predict your schedule based on your use patterns. It then delays charging as needed to allow your phone to reach full charge right when you need it to. As Apple puts it, "Optimized Battery Charging is designed to reduce the wear on your battery and improve its lifespan by reducing the time your iPhone spends fully charged." That way your iPhone doesn't sit in a high-tension state known as trickle charging, which damages the health of your device battery! 
  • Should I let my iPhone completely die before charging it?
    No. Using up the last 20 percent of your phone's battery will diminish its function over time, and likely shorten the overall lifespan of your battery. For the everyday user, this means it won't take as long before the phone stops holding its charge like it's supposed to, and the battery dies more quickly than it should. Not good!
  • Why is my iPhone hot and losing battery?
    While this can signal a hardware issue (such as with your battery), the problem can also be a malfunctioning app or an energy-draining feature. We recommend restarting your iPhone and installing any new software updates. If your iPhone is still overheating, you'll want to do some quick troubleshooting to pinpoint and resolve the issue.
  • Does sharing location drain battery?
    Yes. Sharing your location (such as through the Find My Friends feature in Find My or an ETA in Apple Maps) will definitely drain your iPhone battery. If you've been having trouble with your iPhone battery draining too quickly, we recommend limiting your use of these features. 

Next, learn about the different ways you can charge your iPhone.

Master your iPhone in one minute a day: Sign up here to get our FREE Tip of the Day delivered right to your inbox.

Topics

Author Details

Conner Carey's picture

Author Details

Conner Carey

Conner Carey's writing can be found at conpoet.com. She is currently writing a book, creating lots of content, and writing poetry via @conpoet on Instagram. She lives in an RV full-time with her mom, Jan and dog, Jodi as they slow-travel around the country.