Laptop girlAs a digital nomad I’d be lost without my laptop. I take lots of precautions to keep it safe but things happen. The number one tip I have is to BACK UP, BACK UP, BACK UP. There’s more ways to do that easily all the time. I use an automatic cloud back up service, Mozy.

Extending your laptop battery life is also key to keeping your travel computer working smoothly. Many of these suggestions also work well for iPads and other readers. Do what you can to keep your digital companion happy and you’ll share many miles together.

1. Always use your laptop on a smooth surface and never directly on your lap (It’s tempting to prop your computer up on a pillow but that prevents airflow and can lead to dangerous overheating.) Heat from a laptop can also lower sperm count by as much as 40%.

2. Shut your laptop off before slipping it into a bag. When you close the lid with the computer still on bumps can cause damage to a hard drive that’s working hard to shut down.

3. Want to preserve your laptop battery life? Don’t keep your travel computer plugged in all the time. Leaving a laptop or a desktop plugged in and running all the time tends to degrade battery life as well as wear the fan.

4. Practice a little housecleaning on your computer at least once a year. That means use a vacuum or a computer air-jet to clear dust build up and keep vents open – again helping to keep the computer from over heating or wearing down unnecessarily.

5. Shut down the computer every 5 days at a minimum. This will allow for automatic updates, clear caches of browsing data, memory  and allow for a full cooling.

Hopefully these suggestions should extend your laptop battery life and help keep your travel computer working smoothly, especially if you’re on the road and away from your regular computer repair shop.

What else do you do to keep your travel laptop in shape?