How Long Do Laptops Last?

If you are buying a laptop, an important consideration is how long it will last. Laptops can last for a long time with proper care. But how long? How long do laptops last?

Laptops last for about 3-5 years on average. The amount of time they last depends on the model, how often you use it, and how well you take care of it. Mid-range laptops should last between 4-5 years. Cheaper, lower quality laptops might last 3 years or less.

To make your laptop last longer, don’t fully discharge the battery, avoid overheating, and shut it down before transporting it.

Read on to learn more about how long laptops last, and tips for making it last as long as possible.

How Long Do Laptops Last?

The average lifespan of a laptop has two types: Operational lifespan and useful lifespan.

A laptop’s operational lifespan means the length of time a laptop is still able to function properly. A laptop’s useful lifespan means its ability to cope with the newest software programs on the market. It’s possible to have a laptop that’s still functional after many years, but it might not be able to run the latest advanced programs and applications.

The operational lifespan of a laptop is about 3-5 years on average. The most important factor that determines the lifespan of any laptop is the type of components it has inside, particularly the battery, memory chip, and storage drive.

Many of the current laptops have a soldered storage drive, memory chip, and processor chip. This makes it impossible to upgrade them to cope with the technological advances or to fit your needs unless you also replace the motherboard.

Whether you like it or not, the longevity of laptops often come along with the price. As expected, if you want the best hardware (graphics card, system memory, central processing unit, hard drive, etc.), you should be ready to pay the price.

According to TechGuided, laptops that usually last between 4 and 7 years cost $1,000 or more. [1] When it was launched in 2007, the Voodoo’s Envy H:171 costs $8,500 (complete version). It was considered the most powerful gaming laptop during that time.

Aside from the quality and kind of hardware inside a laptop, your purpose of using it will also determine its lifespan.

Let’s say you’re a gamer. Naturally, you’ll buy a good gaming laptop, which is usually designed to last longer compared to consumer laptops. If you use it right and take good care of it, it could last 5 years or longer, or even up to 10 years. Of course, the gaming laptop’s software and hardware would be obsolete by then.

It’s hard to know for certain how laptop technology will change in the coming years. Long story short, yes, it’s possible for your laptop to physically last for a decade (if treated well), but are you willing to use outdated technology?

laptop lifespan

Tips for Making Your Laptop Last Longer

You’re ready to invest in a top-tier, business-grade laptop. Before you purchase, consider these important tips which will help you increase the lifespan of your new laptop:

Don’t Fully Discharge the Battery

Surprisingly, there’s no danger of overcharging or damaging a battery if you leave it plugged in always. However, fully discharging it would. Fully discharging a battery means that you’re letting it drain fully. It’s usually a good idea to not let your laptop battery fall below 40% before charging.

Avoid Overheating

To avoid your laptop overheating, follow these tips:

  • Check and clean the fan(s) of your laptop at least once a year.
  • Allow proper ventilation by elevating your laptop and keeping the vents away from walls or objects.
  • Avoid using heavy applications at the same time, or if that’s not possible, adjust your settings.
  • Although you can keep your laptop on for many hours or days, it’s still a good idea to let it rest.

Shut Down Before Transporting

If you’re impatient like me, you’ll most likely put your laptop in your backpack or padded bag before it completely shuts down or enters sleep mode. Transporting your laptop while its hard drive is still moving could damage your system.

Business Laptops Last Longer than Consumer-Grade Laptops

Choosing a laptop that’ll last you many years can be a daunting task. There are just so many laptop brands and models. There are also business laptops and consumer-grade laptops.

In general, top-tier business laptops are built using more powerful hardware and have tougher construction, so they’re more durable in the long term. Most of the business laptops on the market are resistant to water, dust, and occasional drops or knocks.

The reason why business laptops last longer than consumer laptops are as follows:

  • All-day usage. Most consumer laptops aren’t meant to be used 40 hours or longer weekly. On the other hand, business laptops are built for that purpose. Some even have batteries that could provide power for more than 10 hours on a single charge. They also use better cooling systems to prevent overheating.
  • Less bloatware. Bloatware, also called crapware and pre-loaded software, isn’t dangerous, but it clogs your laptop. It slows down your laptop and takes up too much space on your hard drive.
  • Better security features. Since they’re usually used to store valuable data, business-class laptops are built with robust tech support and excellent security features (e.g., smart card reader, fingerprint scanner, and facial recognition). The best business laptops are those that can keep your valuable data private.
  • Consistent design. The design of business laptops don’t drastically change every year. This makes them easy to maintain in the long run.
  • Exclusive features. Laptops used exclusively for business-related activities have features that you won’t find in laptops for consumers, such as extended warranties and heavy-duty construction.

So if you want a laptop that will last as long as possible, choose a business laptop instead of a consumer-grade laptop. Business laptops should last for longer than 5 years before breaking down.

We’ve answered the question, “how long do laptops last?” and we looked at tips for making them last longer; next, let’s look at some laptops that are built to last several years.

Laptops That Are Built to Last Several Years

1. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (7th Gen)

Compared to previous versions, the ultra-thin Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon is smaller and lighter. It has an improved Windows “Precision Touchpad,” which is a class of Microsoft input devices that offers high-precision touchpad gestures and custom shortcuts to different mouse gestures.

The battery is light and has a long battery life (might last you an entire day, depending on how you use it). This laptop should last for several years with proper care.

2. Apple MacBook Pro (15-inch)

The Apple MacBook Pro (15-inch) is expensive (no surprise there). The keyboard isn’t also that impressive.

Other than those things, it seems to be worth the look. It’s sleek, slim, fast, and has a crisp and vivid screen display. The battery could power the laptop for 10 hours or longer. It has an Intel Core i9-9980HK CPU and 32GB of RAM inside, making it perfect for photo editing, 3D rendering, 3D modeling, and video editing.

3. Huawei MateBook X Pro Signature Edition

The Huawei MateBook X Pro Signature Edition ultrabook came out in December 2018. It looks good and has a fantastic display, but one of the main reasons people buy it is because of its battery, which could last around 8 hours.

This built-to-last laptop is equipped with an Intel Core i5 or Core i7. The MateBook X Pro (Intel Core i7) is best suited for gamers and people who multitask and use heavy applications, like the Adobe Creative Suite.

4. HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3

The HP EliteBook x360 1030 G3 is not only thin and light (weighing only 2.76 pounds), but it also has military-grade durability. This strong build should make it last for at least 7+ years.

Aside from its sleek and stylish design, it also has a comfortable keyboard, great audio, and is versatile. You can flip this 13.3-inch notebook around to use it as a tablet and back again. 

The battery of the EliteBook x360 could last around 9 hours and 39 minutes, according to the website Laptop Mag.

5. Microsoft Surface Pro 6

With 13.5 hours’ worth of video playback—you can see that the Microsoft Surface Pro 6 comes with a powerful battery. Not to mention, it only weighs 1.7 pounds.

The Surface Pro 6 isn’t exactly a “true” business laptop, but it has the right features for that purpose. You have two choices for processors: Core i5 and Core i7.

If you care more about graphics, performance, and speed, the Core i5 version is best suited for you. If your time is spent playing games or using CAD software, the Core i7 version is a better choice for you.

With proper care, the above laptops should last for more than 5 years.

Conclusion – How Long Do Laptops Last?

On average, laptops lastfor about 3-5 years. The time a laptop lasts depends on the model, brand, and price range. Mid-range laptops have an average lifespan of 4-5 years. Some low-end laptops would have a shorter lifespan of only about 2 years.

The operational life and useful life of a laptop will depend on many factors, like its hardware, price, purpose, and how you use it or take care of it. To be safe, go for business-grade laptops instead of laptops that are made for the average consumers.