Top 10 Tips to Speed Up Your Laptop

Need to squeeze the maximum performance out of your laptop? Follow these 10 tips to increase laptop speed and improve laptop performance.

If you’re trying to improve your laptop speed because your device is chugging along at a snail’s pace, there are many possible ways to fix laptop speed. Below are 10 top tips to speed up your laptop:

Importance of having a Fast Laptop

Whether you use your laptop for work, entertainment, or simply for communicating with friends and loved ones (or all three), it’s important to improve laptop performance so that you have a smooth and hassle-free experience. Laggy, slow laptops seldom get that way overnight; over time, many factors can contribute to a slow laptop.

These 10 tips on how to improve laptop speed are completely free and can help you enjoy your laptop for whatever you use it for. 

1. Freeing Up Disk Space

One of the first places to look if you want to increase laptop speed is your storage and to delete unnecessary files. As a rule of thumb, hard disk drives (HDDs) should never be more than 90% full and solid state drives (SSDs) should never be more than 75% full in order to operate at peak performance.

If you’ve got unused software, consider uninstalling them one by one or in a batch operation using uninstaller software. Large documents, videos, music files and other large files can be moved to an external hard drive if you don’t want to delete them from your laptop.

2. Disable Startup Programs

Another big culprit for slow laptop performance is startup programs. When you boot up your laptop, only the most frequently used and most important programs should start-up; anything else should be disabled to improve laptop performance. 

You can view your startup programs on Windows by right-clicking the taskbar and navigating to the Task Manager (or press CTRL+SHIFT+ESC). Go to the Startup tab and toggle all of the startup programs to optimise performance.

3. Removal of Viruses and Malware

Getting rid of any viruses and malware is good for more than just fixing laptop performance - it’s good in general since you probably don’t want any of these on your laptop in the first place. The thing is, viruses and malware don’t present themselves as obvious malware on your computer; rather, they’re often hidden from plain sight. 

If you suspect that you may have viruses or malware slowing down your laptop (and even if you don’t), use either free antivirus software from a reputable software developer or pay for a premium antivirus software application such as Norton or McAfee.

4. Optimising Power Setting

By default, most Windows laptops use the ‘balanced’ power setting, which can be found under Control Panel > Hardware and Sound > Power Options. Under ‘Create a power plan,’ select ‘High performance’ to boost performance at the expense of drawing more power from the battery, or fine-tune the settings as needed to improve laptop performance.

Note that you can often set up your laptop’s power plan for instances where the device is plugged in and when the device is running off the battery. If you don’t mind a slightly longer charging time or if you mostly use your laptop plugged in anyway, consider choosing ‘High performance’ for a noticeable performance boost. 

5. Update Drivers & Software

Keeping your drivers and software up-to-date is good practise for security reasons, but it can also lead to a noticeable boost in performance as well. Fix laptop speed by clicking Start (Windows icon on the taskbar) then navigating to Settings > Updates & Security > Windows Updates. Click on the 'Check for updates' button and allow Windows to download any required updates. A restart may be required for some updates to take effect. 

As for drivers, depending on the driver you may wish to either use an auto-installer application for drivers or go directly to the manufacturer’s website to download the latest driver, e.g. Nvidia or AMD for graphics card drivers.

6. Turn Off Windows Features

Although most laptops come with Windows and most people are fairly familiar with the operating system, it’s an absolute resource hog in general. Moreover, there are many Windows features that you may find less useful that can drag down performance, such as Cortana (Windows’ so-called productivity assistant). 

Under Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features, navigate to ‘Turn Windows features on or off’ and manually toggle any features you don’t want or need. Depending on the feature(s) being disabled, you may notice a substantial boost to your laptop’s performance.

7. Find Your Resource Bottleneck(s)

This is more of a general tip that can help you diagnose and identify where all of your laptop’s computing power is going. If your laptop is running slowly, there may be one or more causes and perhaps you’ve tried the above tips and haven’t seen a noticeable improvement.

Open the Windows Task Manager (CTRL+ALT+DEL > Task Manager), and toggle ‘More details’ to see exactly which processes are currently running as well as how much CPU, RAM memory, disk and network space they are taking up. From the task manager, you can end any processes that are hogging up resources as needed.

8. Perform a Disk Cleanup

One great way to fix laptop speed is to tidy up any unnecessary files and delete unwanted documents, photos, videos, and so on. Even after doing this, however, you may have an awful lot of clutter files left behind on your hard drive that are less obvious. 

Fortunately, Windows users can de-clutter their hard drives with the Disk Cleanup tool. Open up the Control Panel and head to System and Security > Administrative Tools, then select Disk Cleanup. You can then manually select file categories to delete by clicking the desired categories and then selecting ‘Clean up system files.’ You’ll need administrator privileges to do this. 

9. Defragment Your Hard Drive

Cleaning up your home can make you more productive, and in like manner cleaning up your laptop’s hard drive can make it more productive by reading and accessing data in a more streamlined and organised manner. Just like how you likely accumulate junk around your home over time, your laptop’s hard drive will accumulate ‘junk’ data and store files in a less-than-optimal arrangement on the hard drive. 

If your laptop has a hard disk drive (HDD), navigate to My Computer and right-click the hard drive you want to defragment. By default, your hard drive will likely be named ‘WINDOWS (C:).’ Then, select Properties > Tools, scroll to Optimize and defragment drive, then click ‘Optimize.’ Depending on the size of your hard drive and the amount of space used up, the process may take half an hour or longer. 

10. Refurbished Laptops

Although new laptops come with new hard drives and components, they also tend to come with an awful lot of ‘bloatware,’ or pre-installed programs on the operating system (e.g. Windows) that slow down the laptop right out of the box.

Conversely, many used laptops have the risk of having degraded components or malware and viruses, so it’s important to always look for reputable sellers of refurbished laptops such as Wisetek Store UK. All refurbished products sold at Wisetek Store have been professionally refurbished and come with a free one-year warranty, so you’ll get the peace of mind of having an ‘as new’ laptop at a fraction of the price.

How to Improve Laptop Speed

Whether you’ve got a brand new laptop, an older device, or you’ve purchased a refurbished laptop, it’s important to get the best performance possible if you plan on using it frequently. Most of the top tips for improving laptop performance are completely free and shouldn’t take too long to do on your own, but there’s only so much you can do before your laptop eventually wears out.

Shop for Refurbished Laptops at Wisetek Store UK

Find your next laptop from our shop at Wisetek Store UK. We sell fully refurbished laptops, accessories, refurbished MacBooks, desktop PCs, and much more, all refurbished to an ‘as new’ standard and at competitively low prices. 

For more information, please contact or visit our website.

You might also be interested in the following articles: 

Which Laptops Last the Longest in a Busy Schedule?

Top Alternatives to Google Chrome for 2023 

Are Refurbished Laptops Good for Gaming?