How to prolong the life of your new iPhone

CUPERTINO, CALIFORNIA - SEPTEMBER 12: An attendee looks at the brand new Apple iPhone 15 during an Apple event on September 12, 2023 in Cupertino, California. Apple revealed its lineup of the latest iPhone 15 versions as well as other product upgrades during the event. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

If you just picked up a new iPhone 15, you’ll want to make sure that you’re taking care of your new investment. Whether you want to maintain its trade-in value over time or plan to have it around for the long haul, here are some tips and tricks to keep your new phone in tip-top shape.

Your phone functions best when it’s kept at a temperature between 32º to 95º F. Make sure you don’t leave your phone in your car or out in direct sunlight in warmer weather. If it’s especially chilly out, keep your phone in your pocket or your backpack, or inside a temperature-controlled environment as much as possible. Also, avoid taking your phone out in the rain or snow, or any humid environments like a steam or sauna to prevent water damage.

[Related: How to get the iPhone 15 Pro for free with eligible trade-in]

If you’re picking up some extra USB-C cables for your new iPhone 15, you may be tempted to grab the most inexpensive options to have around the house. It’s important to know that if those cheap cables have a low quality to match, they can raise the temperature of your device while it’s charging and cause overheating.

Use the cables that came with your new iPhone to charge your phone whenever possible. You can also use the USB-C cables from other Apple devices or buy extras from the Apple Store to have around. If you choose to charge your device with cables from other brands, keep an eye on them to make sure they don’t overheat.

With each new iOS, Apple typically makes improvements and adds new features to help preserve your battery life — meaning less wear on your phone. For example, the new iOS 17 comes with a feature that allows you to download maps from the Maps app to use offline to decrease the battery and data usage.

Make sure to download the latest iOS to keep your new phone running as seamlessly as possible. You can turn on “Automatic Updates” in your device settings so you’ll get the latest version on your iPhone as soon as it’s released.

It’s important to clean your phone regularly, but make sure to do it the correct way. Using the wrong cleaning technique or cleaning materials could damage your phone.

Before you clean your phone, make sure it is unplugged. Next, use a dry microfiber cloth, such as a lens cloth, to wipe off your device. Avoid using compressed air or liquid cleaning agents, which can do more harm than good.

To disinfect your phone, Apple recommends using a 70% isopropyl alcohol wipe, a 75% ethyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes to gently clean the surface. Stay away from any wipes containing hydrogen peroxide or bleach. Also, don’t use a wet wipe too close to the openings on your phone — near the charger or speakers — so moisture doesn’t get trapped inside.

[Related: Get $300 off any Apple Watch when you buy with AT&T — here's how]

It’s easy to leave your phone on the charger during your workday or while you’re sleeping. However, newer iPhone models charge quickly and leaving your phone plugged in when the battery is already full puts extra stress on your phone. Each full charge on your phone also will gradually wear down the battery over time. Keeping your phone charged from 30 to 80% is the sweet spot for phone battery health.

iPhones also have a built-in feature that slows the charging speed after your battery is at 80% capacity to help regulate your phone’s temperature. This feature is helpful, but it’s always best to be safe and take your phone off the charger when the battery is full. If you’ve recently upgraded, the iPhone 15 boasts an all-day battery life, so you won’t have to charge as often.

Apple iPhone 15 Pro
Apple iPhone 15 Pro (Apple)

Moderation is key when it comes to prolonging the life of your new phone’s battery. While you don’t want to leave your phone on the charger all day, you also don’t want to let it die either. Bringing your phone back from the dead may add stress to your phone battery. Keep a charger on hand and charge your phone for a bit whenever the battery gets close to 30%.

It’s important to keep a charge on your phone even if you aren’t using it. If you’re taking a day off from screen time or storing your phone during a trip, make sure to have it charged to at least 50% before you power it off.

The iPhone 15 Pro models’ titanium body should make it more durable than previous models, but it’s still wise to protect your new device with a phone case. No matter how careful you are, a good case can help safeguard your iPhone against scratches, dents or cracked glass so it will maintain its pristine appearance and trade-in value for years to come.

A simple lightweight phone case might do the job if your phone will spend most of its time safely at your desk or in a purse. But if you take your phone out into the elements, on hikes or use it in situations where it’s prone to drops and damage, consider investing in a heavy-duty case.

Our smartphones are with us 24/7 and we use them for virtually everything: keeping in touch with loved ones, tracking health and wellness information, shopping, doing our jobs and more. Make sure your new device will keep you connected for the long run by following these tips and tricks to maintain your iPhone.

—By Jillian Mueller