A smartphone can be a lifeline in a storm, but it's useless without power. Here are some easy ways to keep your phone charged if the power goes out:
1. Buy an external charger if you don't have one. Portable smartphone battery chargers are getting better and less expensive. Most drug store chains have them near the counter for your convenience. Also, search Amazon for them and there are plenty to choose from. If you order now, you can get them before Irma hits.
2. Use your car to charge your phone. Most newer cars have one or two USB ports. Even if your car is out of fuel (fill up your tank now), you can turn it on and charge it using only the car battery. If you have a newer car battery, it can charge a phone multiple times.
3. Charge up every laptop in your home before the power goes out. If you lose power, turn your laptop on and use your phone cable to charge your phone via the USB ports.
4. Keep your phone on low power mode. This setting will use far less juice. On an iPhone, go to Settings and scroll down to Battery and turn on Low Power Mode. On an Android, swipe down from the top and find the "Power Saving" icon.
5. Turn your phone off if possible. If you know you won’t need your phone for an hour or two, turn it off or put it on airplane mode. This will also save your battery and make it last longer.
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