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How to prolong the lifespan of your Apple MacBook

If you have a new or used MacBook then you would no doubt like to keep it working for as long as possible.

By LLM Reporters  |  October 2, 2021
apple macbook
Image Credit: alexey_boldin/

Treated yourself to a shiny new MacBook this autumn? You’re not the only one. According to industry data, Apple shipped approximately 6 million MacBooks in the final quarter of 2020, and we are already starting to see more of the same as we enter the final months of 2021.

Since the pandemic began in March of last year, we’ve become ever more reliant on home technology, and home laptops and computers have become essential for remaining connected with others, both professionally and socially. With little choice but to work from home for many months and no option but to celebrate social occasions with family and friends through a screen, it seems we have a new-found appreciation for our digital products – and with home-working set for a potential return over the winter months, we need them more than ever.

While MacBooks are built to be robust and have a seven-year lifespan on average, failing to look after yours effectively could see it letting you down at some point sooner. And, if you’re a member of the camp who have already had theirs for several years, you might be wondering what you can do to keep it performing its best.

The good news is that there are some simple ways to prolong the lifespan of your MacBook, and you don’t need to be a computer expert to do so. Here, we take a look at some of the things you could be doing now to ensure that your trusty Apple device stays with you for the long-haul.

Apple MacBook
According to industry data, Apple shipped approximately 6 million MacBooks in the final quarter of 2020. Image credit: Denys Prykhodov/

How long does your MacBook have left?

One of the factors you should consider when assessing the current state of your MacBook is whether it runs on an operating system (OS) Apple will continue to support for a long time from now. The current OS is Big Sur, which looks set to be supported for another couple of years – which is good news for anyone with MacBook Air or Pro models from 2013 onwards. 

Nonetheless, there may be some other signs that your MacBook’s number is nearly up – if it struggles to carry out the commands you give it, or the apps you want to use can no longer run, then these could be red flags, and it might be time to splurge on a newer model. Similar applies if your MacBook shuts down at irregular intervals or if a key component malfunctions, so keep an eye out for the warning signs to ensure that you’re not left caught short.

How to prolong its lifespan

But before you go rushing to the nearest Apple store, credit card in hand, there are several things you can do to ensure you continue to get the best out of your MacBook:

First, install a virtual private network (VPN) – which can protect both you and your device from cyberattacks. Using a VPN for Mac means you can hide your IP address and encrypt the data between your device and another location, thus masking your identity online and making it more difficult for cybercriminals to access your personal information or install any malware. 

The less the malware, the longer your computer will be able to function without any troubles – so while online security should already be one of your key concerns when it comes to logging on, there are more reasons that you might think to put the right measures in place.

Apple MacBook
Keeping your MacBook clean is also essential to ensure that it remains in optimum condition and continues to perform efficiently for a s long as possible. Image credit: alexey_boldin/

Keeping your MacBook clean is also essential to ensure that it remains in optimum condition and continues to perform efficiently for as long as possible. Ensure that it is kept free of any dust, dirt, and other debris and avoid eating and drinking around it, too, as any spillages could cause irreparable damage.

Also be sure to look after your battery, which is often the first thing to go kaput. Avoid plugging your MacBook into the mains every time you use it, as having the battery at full charge for long periods can reduce its overall lifespan – so use it cable-free until your battery begins to run low.

And finally, be sure to carry out regular updates. Installing them as and when they become available will make sure your MacBook continues to run at optimal levels at all times as well as providing extra protection against security threats.

The bottom line

While there’s nothing quite like the thrill of unwrapping a shiny new MacBook, these essential devices actually have a lot more life in them than you think. So while you might enjoy splashing the cash at your local Apple store, a few simple measures will mean you can do so on other things whilst staying well-connected at all times.