3 Quick Tips to Reduce Chrome’s CPU Usage & Battery Drain

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Chrome is arguably the fastest performing browser available today, but that goodness comes at a cost. In order to be that fast, it has to use more CPU than other browsers are willing to use — and more CPU usage means more battery drainage.

That’s just one of the many reasons not to use Chrome on a MacBook. Its heavy dependence on CPU means that it can impact the performance of other applications and cause your fans to be louder as they try to expel the extra heat. But what can you do?

1. Keep fewer tabs open. In Chrome, every additional tab is another process on your system, which means that each open tab increases the burden on your CPU. Tabs that are heavy on JavaScript and/or Flash elements are particularly bad.

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2. Remove unnecessary extensions. If your Chrome is experiencing unusually high CPU usage, the usual culprit is an extension gone amok. One of your extensions might be poorly coded, or it might just have a bug, but in either case, you should remove them one by one to see if it helps.

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Note that an extension could use CPU even when disabled, so we recommend actually removing them to make sure.

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3. Disable hardware acceleration. The hardware acceleration setting allows Chrome to share heavy processing loads between your CPU and your GPU, but it doesn’t always work well. In fact, sometimes it causes Chrome to use more CPU. Try disabling it and seeing if that helps.

High CPU usage could be the last straw that finally drives you away from Chrome. If these tips don’t help, it might be time for you to consider switching browsers.

Do you have any other tips for reducing Chrome CPU usage? Please let us know in the comments below!

Image Credit: Chrome Logo by tanuha2001 via Shutterstock

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