How to Adjust Windows 10 Screen Brightness

Learn how to adjust Windows 10 screen brightness with this tutorial. You will save yourself a lot of time and frustration later if you do.

Learning how to adjust screen brightness in Windows 10 is more important now than it’s ever been. Windows 10 relentlessly adjusts your device’s screen brightness to let you go longer between charges. Night Light, a feature Microsoft added to help users wind down after a long day, changes your display’s color to help ease you into the night. Unfortunately, some users find it also forces them to adjust screen brightness often.

Screen brightness is essential to how you use your PC, even without those factors. Your screen brightness determines how focused you are on the task at hand instead of whatever is going on in front of you. The darker your laptop or tablet’s screen, the longer you can expect it to last between charges.

There are different ways of adjusting screen brightness depending on the device you’re using and the features it has. Here’s how to adjust Windows 10 screen brightness.

Read: 52 Windows 10 Tips & Tricks You Need to Master Your PC

How to Adjust Windows 10 Screen Brightness

  • How to Adjust Windows 10 Screen Brightness on Desktops
  • How to Adjust Windows 10 Screen Brightness on Laptops
  • How to Adjust Windows 10 Screen Brightness on Tablets & 2-in-1s
  • How to Stop Windows 10 from Changing Screen Brightness

How to Adjust Windows 10 Screen Brightness on Desktops


You can adjust Windows 10 screen brightness from the Settings app or the Action Center on your Desktop PC if your desktop has a screen built-in, like the Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 520. If it doesn’t, you must adjust your screen brightness from your monitor’s control panel.

Settings App

To open the Settings app, tap or click on the Start button in the bottom-left corner of your screen.

Click on the Settings cog in the bottom-left corner of Start.

Click on System.

Use the toggle at the top of your screen to adjust Windows 10 screen brightness to a level you are comfortable with.

Action Center

When you’re doing something and quickly need to change your screen brightness, use the Action Center.

Click on the message bubble in the bottom-right corner of your screen.

Click Expand.

Now use the Screen brightness button to adjust your screen brightness. Clicking on the button cycles between all your options, so expect to click more than once to get the right setting. The company that made your device decides what increments you can adjust your screen brightness to in the Action Center.

How to Adjust Windows 10 Screen Brightness on Laptops


Laptop users have tons of options for changing Windows 10 screen brightness. There’s the Settings app, the Action Center and the keyboard sitting in front of you. Choose the method that works best at the time.

Whichever method you choose, know that you’re still not in complete control of your display brightness unless you disable Adaptive Brightness. There’s a walkthrough on how to do that later in this tutorial.

Read: How to Reset Windows 10 Laptops, Desktops and Tablets

Settings App

Click on the Start button in the bottom-left corner of your screen.

Tap or click on the Settings cog to open the Settings app.

Click on System.

Now use the slider at the top of your screen to change how bright your laptop’s display is.

Action Center

With your touchpad or mouse, click on the message bubble in the bottom-right corner of your screen to open the Action Center. Press the Start key and A key on your keyboard if you prefer keyboard commands.

Look for the screen brightness button at the bottom of the Action Center. Remember, you may need to click it more than once to get the brightness setting you want. Your device’s maker decides what your brightness options are.

Keyboard Buttons

Your laptop has keyboard commands for changing volume and controlling music. It may also have dedicated buttons for changing your screen’s brightness.

Look for brightness controls on your keyboard in the function row. This is the row of F buttons that sits above the numbers at the very top. Look for icons with a light bulb or a screen. Unfortunately, every device maker uses different symbols and puts them in different places. There are usually two buttons for changing Windows 10 screen brightness. One button will increase the brightness while another lets you decrease it.

Once you find these buttons, adjust your screen brightness in Windows 10 by holding down the FN key on your keyboard and the dedicated button.

How to Adjust Windows 10 Screen Brightness on Tablets & 2-in-1s


Changing Windows 10 screen brightness on a tablet or 2-in-1 just requires a finger. That being said, you still use the Action Center and Settings app to make the change. If you have a keyboard, you can use that too.

Every tablet or Windows 2-in-1 uses an ambient light sensor to adjust your display brightness and save battery. You can make some general adjustments, but you won’t have complete control until you turn this feature off. Use Gotta Be Mobile’s How to Turn Off Adaptive Brightness in Windows 10 guide to disable it.

Read: How to Use Tablet Mode in Windows 10

Settings App

Tap the Settings cog on the left edge of the Start Screen.

Tap on System. It’s in the first row of icons.

Now use the slider to adjust your Windows 10 screen brightness.  

Action Center

Toggles for changing the screen brightness in Windows 10 are inside the Action Center. Change the setting from there anytime.

Place your finger on the right edge of your display and slide it to the left to open the Action Center.

The button for changing screen brightness is at the bottom. If you don’t see it there, tap Expand.

Add the button to the Action Center permanently from the Settings app. Inside Settings, click on System. Then select Notifications & Actions from the menu on the left side of your screen.

Keyboard

Finally, if your device has a built-in keyboard, a Bluetooth keyboard, a keyboard cover or a USB keyboard, look for shortcuts that can change your screen brightness in the top row. Not all add-on keyboards have these, but keyboard covers usually do. Look at your 2-in-1 or keyboard’s manual if you see some symbols you don’t recognize.

Read: How to Fix Windows 10 Keyboard Problems

Remember, there are always two keyboard buttons for adjusting screen brightness in Windows 10. Press the correct key for the adjustment you want to make and the FN key at the bottom of your keyboard at the same time.

How to Stop Windows 10 from Changing Screen Brightness

If you find that Windows 10 is changing your screen brightness when you go from place to place, you can turn it off. Microsoft calls this Adaptive Brightness and how you disable it depends on your device.

Older devices bury the toggle for Adaptive Brightness in their Power Management settings. Click on the search bar in the bottom-left edge of your display and type Power Management.

Click Edit Power Plan in the search results.

Click Change Advanced Power Setting.

Scroll down to Display in the pop-up window and click on the plus icon beside it. You should see the option to enable or disable adaptive brightness on your device.

On newer devices, you can disable this from the Settings app.

Click on or tap on the Start button in the bottom-left corner of your screen.

Tap or click on the Settings Cog.

Tap or click on System.

Tap or click the Change the brightness automatically when lighting changes toggle just below the brightness control. Now you have taken complete control of your screen brightness. Your PC won’t try to adjust it.

Things to Remember

Keep these things in mind now that you know how to adjust Windows 10 screen brightness.

Your device only has so much battery life. Increasing the screen brightness will increase your screen’s battery drain and cause worse battery life. Try to offset this with tricks in Gotta Be Mobile’s How to Fix Bad Windows 10 Battery Life guide. Also, decreasing screen brightness will improve your battery life, so only have your screen as bright as you absolutely need.

If your screen brightness is only a problem at night, use this How to Turn on Windows 10 Dark Mode tutorial to dim apps and Windows. This will turn all bright white areas in Windows to black or gray. Some apps have their own dark mode toggle in their settings.

Finally, don’t confuse screen brightness in Windows 10 with Night Light. Night Light changes the color of your display to emit less blue light and ease you into a good night’s sleep. The toggle for Night Light is in the Settings app. Click on System and then click on Display. It’s just under your screen brightness toggle.

Read: 56 Best Windows 10 Apps

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