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How to Fix Bad iOS 8.1.1 Battery Life



Apple’s new iOS 8.1.1 update brings enhancements and fixes for iOS 8 problems. It also, according to iPhone and iPad users, brings battery life problems and abnormal drain. Here, we’ll show you several different ways to fix bad iOS 8.1.1 battery life and get your iPhone or iPad back to where it was before you installed iOS 8.1.1.

Earlier this week, Apple rolled out its brand new iOS 8.1.1 update for iPhone and iPad, an update that had been sitting in its beta program for several weeks, and an update that iPhone and iPad users had their eye on due to the numerous issues plaguing iOS 8 and iOS 8.1. The update, as expected, arrived with several fixes and performance enhancements for both the iPhone 4s and iPad 2.

While the iOS 8.1.1 update is aimed at fixing iOS 8 problems, it looks like the incremental update is causing some issues for owners of the iPhone and iPad. In particular, we’re seeing complaints about broken Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, bad performance and of course, the usual complaints about bad battery life. Battery life issues always seem to plague iPhone and iPad users after an update though most times, it’s not the actual update that’s causing the problems. Apps and other services are often the culprit.

How to Fix Bad iOS 8.1.1 Battery Life on iPhone or iPad

With that in mind, we want to try and fix bad iOS 8.1.1 battery life for you. This guide delivers help to get better battery life on the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. This guide will help with iOS 8 battery life, but it assumes that you already upgraded to iOS 8.1.1 for the many fixes and features it brings to the iPhone and iPad.

Find Apps Eating Up Your Battery

The first thing you’ll want to do is start using the battery life usage tool that Apple deployed inside the iOS 8 update back in September. This is an extremely useful feature and it’s going to help you isolate the apps that are causing you the most damage. Once you find an app that uses too much battery life, you can limit your use of it when away from power, stop its background activity or remove it completely from your iPhone or iPad.

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What’s nice about the battery usage tool is that you’ll also see where poor coverage is to blame for bad iOS 8 battery life. When your phone needs to search hard for a signal, it runs the battery down faster, so keep that in mind when you’re in spotty areas. You may need to turn on Airplane mode when you have no real cell signal.

To start using this tool, head to Settings -> General -> Usage -> Battery Usage to see which apps use the most battery life in the last 24 hours and for the last seven days.

Limit Background App Refresh

Your devices can refresh applications in the background so that the data is available right when you open the app. And while this is a great tool for those that live inside the iPhone and iPad, it’s also a great way to deplete the iPhone or iPad battery.

Instead of turning Background app refresh off completely, you should find apps that use it too much and turn it off for them one by one to see if that solves any iOS 8.1.1 battery life problems. That way, you can keep the apps that aren’t using way too much juice.

To do this, go to Settings -> General -> Background App Refresh -> Turn it off for each app that is using too much power.

Stop Using Auto Brightness

Apple’s iPhone and iPad include sensors that change the screen brightness based on the light in your current environment. Often times, the sensors will boost your screen brightness to unnecessary levels, killing off precious battery.

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To shut this down, go to Settings -> Display & Brightness -> Auto-Brightness -> Off and that way you’ll be able to manually adjust the brightness of your screen to help keep battery drain to a minimum. Remember, you can always turn brightness up or down on your own when you need it using the Control Center.

Restart or Reset Your iPhone or iPad

If you notice that the iPhone battery life is very short or that the iPhone is warm, you need to restart it or reset it. Simply hold the power button and slide to turn off for a normal restart. Believe or not, this has fixed battery life problems in the past. It’s a simple fix but one worth trying if things start to get bad on your iPhone or iPad.

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You can also reset the iPhone or iPad by holding the home button and the power button for about 10 seconds. This will not remove any of your data, but sometimes this is enough to fix whatever was draining the battery life on the device. It has worked for us in the past and it may wind up working for you should you decide to give it a go.

Reset All Settings

This is where you’ll start to see the iOS 8.1.1 battery life fixes that can handle major problems that are killing the battery life on your iPhone or iPad. If you see the usage and standby numbers listed as the same when you look at iOS 8.1.1 battery usage, this is the step you need to take.

Go to Settings -> General -> Reset -> Reset All Settings and then enter your pass code when prompted. This will take 5-10 minutes to complete and will put all settings back to defaults. This will not remove any data or photos from your iPhone and iPad. Again, this is the first step to take if you’re noticing major battery drain on your device.

Restore the iOS 8.1.1 Update

If nothing else works you should try to install the iOS 8.1.1 update again using restore. You’ll need to do this on your computer with iTunes installed. This will wipe your phone completely. You can try restoring from your backup after the update, but if the problem returns, you will want to do this again without restoring from backup. Here’s how to do this.

  1. Plug in and backup to the computer or to iCloud.
  2. Turn off Find My iPhone – Settings -> iCloud -> Find my iPhone -> Off.
  3. In iTunes Click Restore.
  4. Follow the prompts and the iPhone will reinstall iOS 8. from scratch.
  5. When it completes click Restore from Backup to put your information back on the iPhone or Choose to set up as a new iPhone.

This is not a short process. Expect to spend 20 to 45 minutes for this process, and maybe longer if you restore from backup. It’s going to vary from device to device.

Genius Bar/Replacement

If nothing here fixes your iPhone or iPad battery life on iOS 8.1.1, you should make an appointment with Apple. Back up your iPhone or iPad before you go and simply ask them if your battery life is bad. They can test this in store and if it is in warranty they will replace it. There is a one year warranty by default and two years with AppleCare+.



  1. Pat

    11/20/2014 at 7:35 pm

    The last major update I installed ( 7.1.2 ) was murdering the battery. It only took a little curiosity to find out that the update turned on nearly every feature the phone offered. Having no desire to talk to Siri, I turned it off. Having apps constantly updating is a rather silly thing since the 4G network connection is reasonably fast. The WiFi connection is also a vampire on batteries so that is used only when needed.

    Such as now :(

    Thanks for the advice!

  2. Michael Ratcliffe

    11/21/2014 at 9:35 am

    What’s the deal in Britain? Availability site shows almost every apple store having 6 plus 128 IN STOCK but almost can’t be found in North America or Europe???

  3. Tim

    11/22/2014 at 4:45 am

    Another iOS update, another poor excuse to copy and paste some nonsense about “fixing” battery life to create a new click bait article.

    For the record the auto brightness line is terrible advice. Apart from it being a pita to adjust brightness yourself, automatically reducing the backlight whenever possible actually saves battery overall.

  4. Angry Consumer

    11/25/2014 at 11:46 am

    For Christ’s sake, STOP calling these articles “fixes.” These are tips for saving battery life- none of them, not even restores or resets- FIX ANYTHING.

  5. Rob Lucchetti

    12/11/2014 at 5:46 am

    Agree w/ Angry – Nothing except a bad update explains the battery usage after going to 8.1.1 on IP5. I had the same apps refreshing the same way, all the same settings and my battery was almost dead within 2 – 3 hours.
    Apple needs to stop beta testing on their users before they release and update, and then reacting to the fallout.
    For those of you who still have this issues, you can find the IPSW files, and start from scratch.
    Jump to this article:
    and whatever you do DONT RESTORE FRPM BACKUP…just set aside time to rebuild like it was new. You don’t want to import and settings that may have been responsible for screwing up your phone.

  6. Prashant

    12/11/2014 at 5:35 pm

    I have been experiencing excessive battery drain since I upgraded my iPhone 5C to iOS 8.1.1. The battery is in good condition as per an apple authorized shop here. I have tried all tricks & tweaks you have mentioned above, tried resetting settings and have also done a hard reset; each time observing the performance for at least a day and have now observed the performance continuously for the last 5 days. It is simply terrible! Even with little to no usage, the battery runs out quite fast, within a few hours. Having AppleCare might ease the burden, but what exactly do the Genius bar folks do differently in such cases? Any inputs? There is no apple store around here, and the nearest is an hour and half away; so I’d really appreciate your suggestions. Thanks!

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