Here are answers to some common questions about the battery icon and the battery meter. If you're having problems with your battery, see Solutions to common battery problems.
The icon might be hidden. Here's how to show the battery icon:
Right-click an empty area on the taskbar, and then click Properties.
Under Notification area, click Customize.
In Notification Area Icons, click Turn system icons on or off.
On the Turn system icons on or off page, under Behaviors, click On in the drop-down list next to Power, and then click OK.
If you can't change the power setting, your computer might not have a battery installed. Or, this setting might be managed by your system administrator. For more information, see Why won't Windows allow me to change a system setting?
The battery icon won't appear if you're using a desktop computer without an uninterruptible power supply (UPS), or you're using a UPS that's connected to your computer by a serial cable.
If you're using a UPS with a universal serial bus (USB) connection and you don't see a battery icon in the notification area, make sure that the USB cable from the UPS is connected to a USB port on your computer. If the USB cable is connected to the USB port and you still don't see the battery icon, check the information that came with the UPS, or update the UPS device driver. For more information, see Update drivers: recommended links.
The battery icon changes appearance depending on whether your computer is plugged in or running on the battery. It indicates whether your battery is charging or is fully charged. The battery icon also indicates the remaining battery charge in 10-percent increments and changes appearance if the battery charge reaches low and critical levels. The icon also changes appearance if no battery is detected.
The following table explains the meaning of the different battery icons.
Your computer is plugged in.
The battery icon pulses briefly when you first plug in your computer. While the battery is charging, the battery icon fills at 10-percent increments, starting at 10 percent. If the battery icon is not filling, the battery might not be reporting a charging state. If your computer is plugged in for a long time and the battery level remains low, there might be a problem with your computer hardware. If you have an older battery, it might be fully charged, but the full charge doesn't appear as 100 percent.
Your battery is fully charged.
Your computer is plugged in and the battery is fully charged.
Your computer is running on battery power and the battery is discharging.
When your computer is running on battery power, the icon shows the charge remaining in 10-percent increments until the charge reaches the low-battery level.
Your battery is low.
The battery charge has reached the low-battery level.
Note If you set the low-battery level to greater than 25 percent, you won't see the low-battery alert icon. To change the low-battery level, see How do I change the low battery notification?.
Your battery is critically low.
The battery charge has reached the critical battery level. By default, when your battery charge reaches the critical battery level, the battery icon shows a critical-battery notification and your laptop goes into hibernation.
To change the critical-battery level, see How do I change the low battery notification?
The battery state is unknown.
The percentage of battery charge remaining can't be determined.
Windows can't detect a battery in the battery bay, or your battery isn't working correctly.
Your computer is plugged in, and either no battery is detected, or the battery isn't working correctly. The battery might not be installed properly in the battery bay, or there might be a problem with the battery or computer hardware. To learn more, check the documentation that came with your battery, or go to the manufacturer's website.
Power consumption varies constantly, depending on what you're doing and how long you spend doing it. For instance, watching a DVD consumes considerably more battery power than reading and writing e‑mail. For these reasons, the battery meter often lags in reporting the charge and the estimated time remaining. For more information, see How accurate is the battery meter?
On the Turn system icons on or off page, click the arrow next to Power, click Off, and then click OK.
The battery meter can display two power plans.
Open Power Options by clicking the Start button , clicking Control Panel, clicking System and Security, and then clicking Power Options.
Do one of the following:
On the Select a power plan page, click Additional plans, and then select a plan. Any plans that you create, including plans provided by your computer manufacturer, appear under Additional plans.
Create a new power plan. For more information, see Change, create, or delete a power plan (scheme).
By default, the power plan that you select or create becomes the active plan and it then appears on the battery meter. To make another plan active, select it from the list.
You might not have the required user rights to select a different power plan. If your computer is part of a network at an organization—such as a school or business—your organization's system administrator might have designated the active power plan for you instead of letting you choose one.