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[Battery Life Help] Troubleshoot battery issues here!

OP KJ

16th June 2014, 10:19 PM   |  #1  
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Welcome to the new Battery Life Help thread.

Please Read the first 4 posts here before posting. You may not even need to post after you have!

If you are on a device other than a Nexus 5, that's fine, but please state that up front.... Or things may get confusing for all of us. 👍

I'm not the "technician" of this thread, as there are many knowledgeable members on battery life savings and troubleshooting. Sometimes opinions vary... And that's always how things are...especially on the interwebz. Usually that's a good thing.

All are encouraged to participate!!!!

Most battery issues are non device specific.... Most. And troubleshooting is almost universal. Occasionally there's device specific issues and bugs, but mostly its about basic setup and usage patterns. No matter the device.



So, some guidelines to make finding issues efficient. (A lot of this won't be possible if you are not rooted....so do your best)

1. Please please please.....use Gsam (my favorite) or Better Battery Stats (BBS) or Wakelock Detector when posting screenshots. No one can stop you from posting shots from the stock battery usage screens in settings....but 9 times out of 10 you'll be asked to use one of the above apps....cause the stock screens say to little to be useful finding an issue. Just install one of the apps. Use it until your issue is solved...then get rid of it if you wish. Tho really, they are great tools to have, and NO, they don't consume heavy amounts of battery life. At all.

2. No screenshots will probably get you no useful help. As any attempt to assist you would just be guesses and generic tips.

3. As of Kit Kat, you either need an xposed module found Here or if you use Gsam, also install Gsam Root Companion. Both found on Play Store. Without any of those, you can't see wakelocks in Kit Kat.

4. Here are the standard screenshots that will get you the quickest help. In Gsam anyway....or the equivalent screens in the other apps.

For Gsam, you should post....

- The main screen.
- App sucker screen.
(In app sucker, click the drop down for the rest...)
- Times waking device.
- Time held Awake.
- Kernel wakelocks.

Yes, that is 5 screenshots. A lot I know. But together those will give almost all the info needed to help you. Usually.

5. Obviously, above your screenshots, post your issue in as much detail as possible. Like your setup (location on or off... Gnow on or off...screen settings...signal strength on Data especially... And anything else you feel may matter) and your usage. Gaming? Navigation? Etc.


All of the above will lead to much quicker help, without the need for people trying to help having to ask you a bunch of questions.

Be patient!! Some battery issues are very hard to lock down.....but 95.6 percent of them can eventually be solved. And remember....usage plays a big part! You may be stuck with 3 hours screen on time because of your usage. Sorry. Games for example. And a really poor signal strength while on data is a battery death march.
Last edited by KJ; 26th September 2014 at 01:37 AM.
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16th June 2014, 10:19 PM   |  #2  
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Tips for better Battery Life

These tips are going to be a collection of all I know, as well as contributions from you guys over time...that I will add in. Unless of course I completely disagree. Lol. (I.E. Task killers, Juice Defender type apps....etc)

First thing is first, since it seems to cause the most problems......and so many can't live without it. Lol. Location Services.


Location Services

Location Services is so very poorly implemented in Android, its almost absurd. The service itself isn't so much to blame for battery issues, but its weakness to getting exploited by other apps. Social apps being the worst offenders. Its also very hard to pin down the offending apps. Yes, many have no issue with location services. They're the lucky ones. Sooooo many do lose a tonne of battery life to it tho, usually by excessive wakes caused by apps accessing it.

So, my first piece of advice. TURN IT OFF! Use your toggles. On when needed, off when done. It doesn't take long, its a couple clicks. Guaranteed you see FAR greater battery life because of it.

If you must use it....just must.....know that Batter Saver is NOT the most battery friendly setting. Device only is. (GPS only). Don't know why, talk to Google for an explanation. Signal strength for data I bet. And of course, high accuracy will drop your battery the quickest.

Location history reporting. Battery killer.

Android Device Manager. Found in Google settings app. "Remotely locate this device", battery killer. Neat feature....but will cost you battery time. And the other option, "remote lock and erase"....surely takes its share of the battery pie also.

So, device only is your best bet, but not so great indoors. Probably won't find the satellites. But it will be far better on your Juice. One way to use location on and help stop apps from abusing it, is Grrenifying the apps that use it, or using app ops or its equivalent to change app permissions and disallow them location permission.

K, I bashed on location enough. But it is the number one item in most issues I see.


Signal Strength


A weak signal is about the quickest drain a phone can have. If your signal is very weak and spending time out of service and scanning for a signal.....your battery can literally drop like a rock. The worst part, Gsam and similar apps don't really indicate the signal, radio or anything else is draining your battery. I'm not sure why these apps can't report the loss from signal, but I guess its just not possible.

Very hard to "fix" this issue.

- Your first option, get on WiFi. Its not really the text and phone part of the radio draining you, its data. If your signal is poor or non existent and apps are trying to sync over data.....the phone is working overtime trying to transfer the data. Getting on WiFi will fix this. Even with poor signal strength on the radio.

- Next option, toggle off data in poor coverage. No, your social apps and what not won't work. But you'll still get texts and calls. When you have a signal. This will dramatically slow the battery drain.

- Last option. Airplane mode. Yes, you will be completely cut off from the world. But your battery will barely drop.....assuming you have no issues and your standby drain is good.

Of course, combine poor signal with location services on high accuracy or battery savings....with data on....and you will be charging by lunch time or have a dead phone.


Roms and Kernels

I won't say much about this. There's those who will agree with me and those that always ask "what's the best ROM/kernel for battery life?". MOST experienced users will agree....ROM/kernel combos will make minor differences occasionally. Its all about setup and usage.....and signal strength.

I always say.....I could run any ROM or kernel (and I almost have) and will still get 24 hours plus with 6 hours SoT consistently, with my lean setup and low CPU demand usage. Guaranteed. Now, if you want me to prove it.....I wanna be paid for my time. And I'm not cheap.

Kernel tweaking, such as under volting/clocking, may gain you small battery life returns at best. And also possible lag and instability. Lots will disagree with me here. But thoroughly test it out yourself and see. ��

But to each their own I always say. Personally, I can't remember the last time I changed any kernel settings from whatever one I'm running. I just don't see the point. Fun and experimentation perhaps.....but big battery savings.....not gonna happen.

Last kernel thing......double tap to wake, even with the timeouts it has now.....lots of battery drain.


Greenify

I use it. Some don't. I use it on anything I know is going to run when it feels like and possibly steal my battery juice or cause any issues. One app I've always greenified is Maps. If it comes with the ROM, I convert it to a user app with titanium backup and then Greenify it. Games, any I ever have, greenified. I don't need or want to know my farm is ready to harvest. Lol. I'll find out when I open the game.

Use at your discretion. I wouldn't Greenify anything I use often, like dolphin or Tapatalk.....it'll just use more juice constantly loading them into memory. Social also won't sync if greenified. And be very careful greenifying system apps. That can cause you issues for sure.

Greenify tip from @Lethargy:

The paid version of Greenify let's you choose an option for Greenified apps called GSM push, when used with Xposed and the Greenify module activated. It allows you to still receive push notifications from hibernated apps. So you can Greenify those social apps that like to spam location services and burn data when your not even using them....and they will be awoken when you get a push notification. Will help with the drain from these apps better than doing nothing with them for sure! . A happy middle between always running and totally hibernated.


Screen Brightness

I think we all know a bright screen will cost you lots of juice. Out in the sun, there's not much we can do about it. I go back and forth sometimes. If I'm outside all day, I just usually put on auto brightness. But, nothing will help you save juice more than setting it manually. Someone not long ago mentioned an app called "Display Brightness ". Its free, and puts a very customizable slider anywhere around the edge of your screen that you want it. It gives you a quick access slider on your screen and its always there no matter what app you're in. You can change its size, location, color, transparency... Etc. Great little app.

Anyway.....if you keep the screen as dim as is comfortable for you, you'll get big gains in battery time.

I'm not convinced about LUX and its equivalents.... But many swear by them. Definitely something to look at too.


Tasker

I know little of tasker, I've never really got into it much. I did pay for it....and can't say when I last used it. Lol

You can do amazing things with it....to automate much of the things I've mentioned. A great tool for sure!!!

I've just never minded using toggles myself.


A few Quick Ones

- The more vibrating your phone does, the more juice it will drink.

- Games. We all know they kill the battery fast. Nuff said. . (Keep the screen dim)

- Social apps and other things that sync....the more you have, the more your battery time decreases. Especially picture heavy ones, like Facebook. It takes data transfer and CPU time to load all those images. Also, some wake your device a crazy amount of times to keep you up to date with your friends. (See Post Number 3 for help on controlling these and much more!!!!)

- Task killers. Guaranteed they waste more battery than they claim they'll save. Opening apps over and over is far worse on the battery than them sitting in memory idle. (In most cases. Greenify the exceptions). Android RAM is meant to be used. Too much free RAM is not helping, its wasted RAM.

- Juice Defender and other battery saver apps. Most will agree, some may not....but again, waste more juice than they save. For a moderate to heavy user, setup juice defender and look at your times held awake later. It can easily get over 2000 wakes per day.

Now...for a very light user.....very light....like you barely touch your phone all day....then Juice Defender may actually help you. But only the very light user.


Summary

Not all of these things are for everyone....but with each piece of advice you take, you'll save a little more juice.

Is my phone no longer a smartphone? Many have said that. Lol. Well guess what....in a few clicks, my phones intelligence can skyrocket. I just don't need things running 24/7 when I don't need them....or never use them.

So, here is a quick checklist of what I personally do after I install any ROM. And again, my battery life is as good as most I've seen. I'm just sharing this, not suggesting everyone do it. And also, all of our needs, usage and apps we use vary.....so there's no way to all have the exact same setup. Or the same battery times!!

After every install:

- I go into accounts/Google. Unchecked the things I don't want to sync. Usually I only have gmail, calendar and contacts checked.

- I turn location to device only, location history reporting is usually off for me by default, so I don't need to remember when I actually use it, then I turn it off completely.

- I go into Google settings app. In android device manager, they are both unchecked. Google Now is off. In ads, I check opt out of customizable ads. Location is already off.

- Sound settings. I uncheck all the options at bottom. No click sound, no vibrate on touch...etc. ( my keyboard makes no sound or vibration either). My phone only vibrates if I set it to vibrate. Otherwise it never vibrates on calls or notifications.

- I change a few cosmetics. (No battery impact here)

- I download titanium backup and restore my apps. Only user apps, and only data on the ones I don't want to setup again.

- change my wallpaper black. Not sure on an N5 if it helps battery life whatsoever.....its just my visual preference.

- Go into titanium backup and freeze, NOT uninstall...everything I never use.

- reboot.

- I Greenify all the apps I usually Greenify.

- Nova gets data restored, so not much to usually setup there. Its just how I had it.

- Restore the only widget I use. An agenda widget.

- Start LMT, Gsam, Display Brightness app and light flow...on some ROMs. The ones that have customizable notification LEDs by default, i don't use light flow. All of these get restored with data, so no setting up preferences required. Kii keyboard as well. And I disable the Nav keys.

Well, that's my setup routine. Again, to each their own. Just sharing my way. ��


That's all I have for now. Formatting (and spell and grammer check) will be tweaked to be easier to read in days to come. So no need to comment on my many mistakes. Lol. Plus additions I think are helpful from the community will be added. Along with credit, unless you don't want it.

Just whipped this up quick to help those that want it. I'll make it prettier soon. Promise!!

Good luck! ��
Last edited by KJ; 29th July 2014 at 04:03 AM.
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16th June 2014, 10:20 PM   |  #3  
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Managing syncs and services with "Disable Service"
Google Services drain? Syncs magically re-enabling themselves? Useless social app syncs? This post will help you solve those!

Google apps and various social media apps use syncs. They'll put themselves under the "Accounts" section in Settings if they have any. At first the concept sounds fine, but the thing is, most of them are useless, abusively used and just waste your battery. Sync services cause wakelocks as they can't run while in deep sleep. Multiple syncs active causes dispersed wakeups, draining even more battery. Syncs also (for some unknown reason) sometimes re-enable themselves when you've unchecked them previously! Greenifying Google Play Services isn't a good idea since it'll constantly kill and automatically restart the services, which probably does more harm than good. It can also cause issues and break things, so what can you do about it?

There is a solution, use the app "Disable Service", found here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/d...disableservice
True to it's name, it allows you to selectively disable services for apps, completely preventing them from being used, as if they didn't exist:



As you can see above, I only have a Sync for Gmail, it's the only one I have a use for and the others are completely disabled, not just unticked (they sometimes re-tick themselves..).

[Note: "* Google Play Services" is a hidden sync that's for Google Account settings, I can see it because I'm using the Greenify Donation Package along with Xposed, the feature called "Reveal Hidden Sync". Its integrated into the core of Google Play Services so you can't disable it completely without causing issues (unticking is fine). It doesn't cause any wakes anyways since it's only active for a moment when you manually change account settings in Google Settings (i.e. device is awake anyways and it's not like you're always changing the settings).]

Now Google Play Services, various Google apps and social media apps have a lot of services. How do we tell which ones to disable?
They have "Sync" in the name and begin with what they're syncing.
For example:
Under Google Play Services, PeopleSyncService is the sync for "People" under your Google account.
Under Google+, AutoBackupSyncService is the Auto Backup sync for Photos.

Simply uncheck the boxes to disable a service:



If you're unsure which sync is which, the best way to tell is going to the sync page (In Settings > Account, see the first screenshot of this post), then opening Disable Service, disable a service and see which sync disappears. Re-enable it if it turns out to be a sync you rely on. If you're not 100% sure what a service is for, feel free to mention me in this thread, I'll provide an answer if I know what is is.

Social media apps also use syncs for purposes such as "find your friends", "contacts sync" and "photo album sync". Useful for some, but not everyone. They also use syncs to "refresh" automatically while you're not looking at them. There isn't really any need for that.. I mean, it'll refresh posts when you open up the app again and your notifications are pushed to your device anyways, right?
Waste of battery. You can disable all these too with no issues. Extremely helpful if you have a bunch of social media apps which nag you for syncs.

Also keep in mind that Google apps put all their syncs under the Google account and you'll have to go their respective apps to disable them (usually with "Adapter" in its name, but not always). For example, the Google+ and Google Chrome syncs get merged under your Google account.

If you also have the Greenify Donation Package and Xposed Framework, you can enable "Wakeup Timer Coalescing". This feature causes your syncs to all sync at the same time, rather than leaving them to sync whenever they want. It'll save a bit of battery because it'll only need to wake once rather than multiple times. Useful if you still rely on a few actually useful syncs such as Gmail.

The Disable Service app is also useful for disabling useless services which other apps tend to activate even if they're not being used. One example is YouTube. It wakes up screen cast services even if they're not being used, which subsequently wakes up Google Play Services. If you never use screen casting, you can disable it so it won't wake Play Services pointlessly whenever you open YouTube. Examples of some other services you can disable if you don't use them are Wearable Services, Play Games, Analytics. Don't disable any services with "Gcm", "gtalk" or "push" in them or you risk missing notifications from apps which use GCM cloud to push notifications to your device.
If you never use location you can also disable everything with "geo" or "location" in it, so it'll be completely disabled. No more location wakelocks. Ever.
Do keep in mind that disabling some could render an app useless if it legitimately needs to use it.

Titanium Backup won't work on Disable Service as it doesn't actually store any data itself and disables it in the system ("pm disable"). The "cut off wakeup path" feature of Greenify Donation Package + Xposed does the same thing, but (as far as I know) temporarily as it stores it in Greenify's data, and you can only disable them once they come up, not selectively.
Luckily, Disable Service has a hidden backup/restore function which you'll probably miss. Its in Overflow Menu > About. Helpful when flashing new ROMs/clean flashing. Puts DS_backup.txt on your Internal Storage.

For a general idea of what most of us have disabled without issues, I've dumped screenshots of what I personally have disabled. Please note that not everyone's would be the same, and some people may still need specific services to be enabled. Here: http://imgur.com/a/jFrPc

Blocking the wakelock permission on Play Services isn't a bad idea either, see my post here: http://forum.xda-developers.com/show...&postcount=332

If you're a user of location but you don't want the services to always be active when you don't need them (e.g. you only need them for driving/maps), you can use Tasker to enable and disable them. Create a new task, add action: Script > Run Shell. The command is "pm disable package.name/package.name.service".
e.g. for disabling AnalyticsService:
Code:
pm disable com.google.android.gms/com.google.android.gms.analytics.service.AnalyticsService
Make sure to check "Use Root". To enable a service you use pm enable instead of pm disable, of course. Try not to toggle them too much (e.g. enable/disable if Google Maps is open or not), as it'll probably cause a lot of lag. Manual toggles are probably best.

Enjoy your device without the annoyance of Play Services wakelocks/syncs.
Last edited by Lethargy; 11th October 2014 at 04:04 PM.
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16th June 2014, 10:22 PM   |  #4  
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Gsam has a lot of easy to follow info available, if you have root companion as well, and know where to look. Many battery issues will show their faces in these screens somewhere. Many, not all.

Here are samples of the important Screenshots from Gsam. Include these in your post and other members will quickly get an idea of what's happening. Hopefully. (not all issues are easy to find)

These are from Gsam with Gsam Root Companion also installed. Without Root Companion, or if you are not rooted....you won't have all these available. So do what you can.

Main Screen


App Sucker Screen


Number of Times Waking Device (in App Sucker drop down)


Time Held Awake (in App Sucker drop down)


Kernel Wakelocks (in App Sucker drop down)


Also, if you have a weak signal a lot...maybe include Phone Radio screen


If your using Auto Brightness especially, the Screen screen can say a lot


And from the systems settings menu, under battery. Click on the graph for a more detailed graph....(tho really not necessary if you posted the first 5 above....and Radio screen if you think your signal is weak)


That's about it, from Gsam anyway.
Last edited by KJ; 1st July 2014 at 12:43 AM.
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16th June 2014, 10:34 PM   |  #5  
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I know we have a battery thread with 3000 posts....but its cluttered now, as all threads get eventually. Its in General, not Q&A, where troubleshooting is usually found. And its title is Nexus 5 battery results....designed to share times, more so than fix issues. It just became the go to issue place.

Time for a more new member friendly thread that stands out.
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16th June 2014, 11:19 PM   |  #6  
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Reserved. For moi'
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17th June 2014, 02:43 AM   |  #7  
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Good idea for the thread. It might also be helpful if you detailed your usage. Of course, people's usage should be what works for them and even if someone emulated your usage they will most likely get slightly different results. However, having said that I think a lot of people will ask for it anyway. I am curious myself as well of course =]
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17th June 2014, 04:06 AM   |  #8  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PsychDrummer

Good idea for the thread. It might also be helpful if you detailed your usage. Of course, people's usage should be what works for them and even if someone emulated your usage they will most likely get slightly different results. However, having said that I think a lot of people will ask for it anyway. I am curious myself as well of course =]

I'll be putting my setup, and general tips in post 2 when I get some time.

My setup is simple really, turn all the frills off. Toggle them when needed. Screen dimmer, and manually adjusted. Greenify anything that can hurt battery life. I don't usually game... I have an N7 for that. I mostly use the browser, Tapatalk...and text. Yes, boring, I know. Lol

And try not to be running data in poor signal coverage areas. That's number one! Use WiFi, or turn off data and use it only when needed. Texts and calls still work with data off.

My setup definitely isn't for everyone....but decent battery life should still be obtainable with a more robust setup. Its all priority. Give up some things, gain more time. Keep some things, lose some time. And definitely squash any abnormal issues. I've ran just about every ROM out there, and always got similar battery life...setup the same on all of them of course.

And I hope others will see what I put and add to it anything I missed.

As I said, this isn't MY thread to oversee.....its just hopefully going to be a more efficient place for help. Assuming the appropriate screenshots accompany the posts. 👍

It will be simplistic, nothing fancy. I'm not much into kernel tweaks and what not, not for the small amount of battery life they can add.

The purpose of the thread is for people to post issues, and for people to help solve them.

My tips won't be new to most, just gathered in an easy to find location....especially to help newer folks.
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17th June 2014, 04:12 AM   |  #9  
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Oh....and the answer to the majority of battery issues......Location Services. Lol

Not location services alone perhaps....but it and the apps using it combined.

Thank Google. They just can't seem to get location services right.

Want significantly better better battery life immediately? Turn it off. Yes, off. Toggle it when needed (2 screen touches usually....a swipe and a click). And toggle it off when done.

Best tip there is. Yes, a sacrifice to some....but usually, great results.
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17th June 2014, 05:04 AM   |  #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KJ

Oh....and the answer to the majority of battery issues......Location Services. Lol

Not location services alone perhaps....but it and the apps using it combined.

Thank Google. They just can't seem to get location services right.

Want significantly better better battery life immediately? Turn it off. Yes, off. Toggle it when needed (2 screen touches usually....a swipe and a click). And toggle it off when done.

Best tip there is. Yes, a sacrifice to some....but usually, great results.

So freaking true. I've set up my rom's tile to toggle between High Accuracy and Off. When I need maps or location, I hit the toggle and once I'm done, hit it again

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