Is it Bad to Leave the Tablet Plugged in All the Time?

When it comes to different devices nowadays, one of the things that people will often say is that you should never leave them plugged in and charging all the time because this can potentially damage their batteries. While that may be true for a lot of other devices, does that hold true for your tablet as well? Is it actually bad for the battery if you leave a tablet plugged in all the time?

No, it is not bad for the tablet if you leave it plugged in all the time because doing so will not harm its battery. Modern tablets are designed to be able to stop charging or taking up any more power once the battery is already full. And that is why you can leave the tablet plugged in all the time.

It’s always been one of the common beliefs in battery charging that you have to make sure that you remove your device from its charger the moment it hits 100%. However, we are lucky enough to have tablets that are made to have batteries that will stop charging once they are full. As such, you don’t have to worry about a thing when it comes to leaving your tablet charged or plugged in indefinitely.

ipad screen on

Is it okay to leave a tablet plugged in all the time?

We know how important the battery is for all of our different devices. After all, the battery is what allows them to be portable enough for us to carry around. This includes our laptops, smartphones, and tablets. That is why we are always told to make sure that we take good care of our gadgets’ battery life if we want to get the most out of them.

In terms of what we can do with the batteries of our gadgets, one of the most common beliefs is that we should never leave them charging indefinitely. That means that we are not supposed to leave the gadgets plugged into their chargers all the time and beyond what their batteries are capable of handling. The reason is that their batteries will drain faster and may even overheat and combust as a result of being plugged the entire time to the point that they will take in more power than what they can handle. This was the case for some of the older laptops and cellphones as it was not uncommon for their batteries to deteriorate when they were plugged in all the time.

However, we have seen how far technology has progressed today that you can now leave laptops charging all the time without worrying about whether or not they will overheat or take in more power than what their batteries can handle. So, if that is the case for our laptops, does it also follow that we can leave our tablets plugged in all the time?

It really isn’t uncommon for people to think that you shouldn’t be leaving your tablets charged or plugged in all the time because, as mentioned, there is a belief that the battery would end up taking up more energy to the point that it gets damaged. Some people even believe that leaving the tablet charged the entire time can cause it to combust due to how its battery is taking in more power than what it can handle. Of course, this happened in the past already as older tablets with batteries that were primitive were not designed to be plugged in the entire time. However, that isn’t the case in today’s tablet batteries.

The truth is that technology has progressed far enough to the point that modern batteries found in tablets, smartphones, laptops, and other similar gadgets are designed such that they can manage power well enough. That means that the batteries and the gadgets themselves are able to regulate the amount of current that they get from the charger when they are plugged in all the time. And when they get to the point where the battery is already full, the battery will stop taking in more power than it can handle.

So, in short, it is perfectly alright for you to leave the tablet plugged in all the time without worrying about whether or not the tablet’s battery will suffer as a result of keeping it charging indefinitely. What actually happens is that it will stop charging the battery once it is already full but it will still take in enough power that it needs to keep the battery full.

Of course, leaving your tablet in sleep mode means that it is in a low-power state. That means that it still eating up power but at a degree that is far lower than leaving it turned on. So, if you keep it plugged in all the time while it is in a low-power state, it will still eat up battery power but it will take in enough power from the charger to make sure that the battery stays at 100% while in this state. Basically, it is self-regulating and will only take in the power that it needs from the charger if you do keep it plugged in the entire time.

As such, there is no need for you to worry about keeping your tablet plugged in all the time. Doing so will not damage your tablet in any way. However, we cannot say the same about your power adapter and charging cable because they will still be under a lot of wear and tear due to the current that is passing through them. So, to be on the safe side, it might not be completely okay for you to leave the tablet plugged in all the time not for the tablet’s battery’s sake but more of to be on the safe side because, if your power adapter and charging cable wear out faster, you’d be spending more money for replacements.

Samsung galaxy Tablet

Can tablets be overcharged?

Now that we have settled that you can leave your tablet plugged in all the time without worrying about its battery, we should now talk about whether or not your tablet can actually be overcharged. After all, this is one of the more common believes that you will hear when it comes to gadgets and other similar devices that come with lithium-ion batteries. And with how fast our chargers have become today, there are those who believe that fast chargers were specifically designed to make sure that people don’t leave their gadgets charging overnight.

So, in the past, it was not uncommon for mobile phones and tablets to actually end up overcharging as a result of being plugged in the entire time. That’s because they were not yet advanced enough to detect that they are already fully charged.

However, the modern batteries we have today don’t have overcharging issues anymore. That’s because tablets are now built to have digital circuit breakers that actually cut the charging off once the battery has reached its full capacity. Meanwhile, as the tablet drains power from the battery while you leave it in a low-power state, it will only take in enough power to keep the batter at 100%. As such, again, you can leave your tablet plugged in even though it has already reached its full capacity without even worrying about the possibility of harming its battery.

So, even if you are using your tablet while it is charging, it will still continue to charge because of how your usage will eat up battery power. But, again, it will only take in enough power to keep the battery at 100%. This means that the tablet will stop charging when the battery is full but will continue to charge the battery for as long as it needs as you are using the tablet, which drains some battery power.

Then again, there is the issue of the charging cycles that your tablet’s battery has. In the past, charging from an empty battery was a good idea but it has now become different today. The reason is that the battery types we have today are lithium-ion, which have a limited number of charge cycles. That means that you can only charge them up to the number of cycles they have before they become unusable.

As such, what happens here is that you need to keep in mind the charging cycles of your battery such that you need to avoid emptying it out because of how doing so will complete a full charge cycle. So, if you were to top it off with a few small charges instead, that will prevent the battery from completing a full charge cycle completely.

three ipads next to each other

Should tablets be turned off while charging?

While it isn’t harmful to you to leave your tablet charging indefinitely, is it better for you to turn it off while charging? Is there a good reason for you to even do so?

Well, in truth, there are no particular reasons why you may want to turn your tablet off while it is charging. There are some who would say that it’s better to keep the tablet off because of how it is supposed to charge the tablet faster considering that turning it off won’t eat up power. However, that really isn’t necessarily true.

So, the reason why some people believe that it is better to keep the tablet off is that the background processes such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and cellular data, among others, are continuously draining the battery. While that may be true, turning it off won’t change a lot when it comes to charging it. That’s because tablets have battery-saving algorithms that will allow the tablet to be in an extremely low-power state while it is on standby or sleep mode. This means that turning it off or keeping it in sleep mode or standby won’t make a lot of difference.

Then again, some people will point to overheating as one of the reasons for turning the tablet off. However, modern lithium-ion batteries are designed to make sure that they don’t reach high enough temperatures whenever you are charging them. Tablets may stay warm while turned on but that is completely normal. They won’t get too hot to the point that the tablet or the battery will get damaged.

Also, it should be better to keep the tablet in standby mode because of how fast the world has become to the point that we always need to be aware of what is happening in relation to our social media apps and our email. So, keeping the tablet turned off means that we won’t be able to see important notifications that may be crucial to our daily lives. As such, we recommend keeping the tablet turned on while charging it.

Is constantly charging the tablet going to shorten its battery life?

When we say constantly here, we are talking about frequently charging the tablet and not keeping it charging indefinitely. Well, the truth is that all batteries have limited charge cycles, which will be eaten up regardless of whether or not you are charging your battery constantly.

As such, what happens here is that every time you charge your battery from 0 to 100, that is one charge cycle that it will eat up. So, in that sense, charging it less frequently can actually harm the battery because of how you will be eating a charge cycle faster.

This is where being smart about when to charge your battery comes in as frequently charging your battery once it reaches a certain level is actually a good idea. That is something you will understand later on as you read this article. But the point here is that frequent charging won’t end up damaging the tablet’s battery life and may even be better for it.

surface pro powered on with type cover from the side

How to keep tablet battery healthy

With all that considered, here are some tips that will allow you to keep your tablet battery healthy and allow it to last longer:

  • Turn the brightness down, turning off Bluetooth, and keeping the Wi-Fi and other similar functions off will eat less battery power and will allow the battery to last longer per charge. That means that you will be able to extend the tablet’s overall battery life because you are less likely to use more charging cycles.
  • Disabling the notifications can also help extend the battery life per charge because of how your tablet’s screen will be turned off the entire time. When a notification appears, the tablet’s screen will turn on and will eat a bit of battery. As such, keeping notifications off will go a long way in keeping your battery healthy even if it seems like it is too simple.
  • Don’t charge below 20%. The moment your battery reaches 20%, you need to charge your tablet right away so that you won’t be eating up a charge cycle when the battery reaches a critical level. There are some people who would even consider charging their tablets when they are between 40% and 80% as this allows them to extend the number of charging cycles.
  • Always close apps. Some people make the mistake of not closing apps that they are no longer using. Even if the apps are not running, having them running as background apps will still eat up the tablet’s battery on top of also using more memory from the tablet.


I'm Rob, the founder of I’m a Marine Corps vet with a master’s degree in Information Systems and have been working in the technology field for over a decade.

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