How To Make A Chromebook Stay Awake Longer

Chromebooks, like laptops and other battery-powered devices have a sleep mode that automatically triggers when the device has been idle for a certain amount of time. This is to help preserve battery life and for the most part it works well. It isn’t universally useful though, especially if you’re in class or working on something and using the Chromebook as a secondary device. Then it would be useful to make the Chromebook stay awake longer.


Just like the sleep timer on other device types like Windows laptops or Macbooks, you can tweak the setting to extend the sleep timer and have it stay awake for longer. This tutorial will show you how.

Be aware though that messing with the sleep timer will have a detrimental impact on battery life. The intent of sleep is to save battery so it stands to reason that disabling it will burn through more of that battery. If you’re fine with that or don’t run it off battery that often, the following methods will stop your Chromebook going to sleep quite so quickly.

Keep your Chromebook awake for longer

You can use a configuration setting to keep your Chromebook awake longer or use an extension. Both seem to do the same thing for the same amount of effort so it’s entirely up to you which you use.

Settings tweak:

  1. Log into your Chromebook and select your profile image in the bottom right.
  2. Select the gear settings icon from the popup menu.
  3. Select Device and Power.
  4. Select Keep display on next to When Idle.

This will prevent your Chromebook going to sleep while you’re doing other things. It’s a shame there isn’t the option to extend the timer but your only options are to Sleep, Turn on Display or Keep Display On. You can also change what happens with you close the lid of your Chromebook underneath if you like.

If these settings are grayed out and you see a building icon, you won’t be able to make this change. The building signifies your Chromebook is managed by a domain controller that you don’t have access to. There is nothing you can do if that’s the case and you’ll have to use the extension below.

The Keep Awake extension

This being Chrome, you can also use extensions to change certain behaviors and the sleep timer is one of them. As long as you have the permissions to install extensions this should work just as well as the settings tweak. If you weren’t able to change the configurations but can add extensions, this is also a good way around not being able to change it manually.

Add the Keep Awake extension to your Chromebook from here. Once you install it, you will be able to select the sun, sunset and moon icon. The sun icon prevents sleep completely. Sunset prevents sleeping but will allow the screen to turn off. The moon turns off the extension for normal sleep.

This is arguably better than the hardware setting in some ways as you can keep your Chromebook awake while optionally sending the screen to sleep. This setting is ideal as it will extend battery life a little by turning the screen off and reduce distractions. Your mileage may vary though.

Extend the battery life of your Chromebook

If you do tweak your Chromebook battery settings, you may need to make some tweaks to extend the battery life to compensate. Here are some quick tips to get a little more out of your battery.

Turn off WiFi and Bluetooth

Both WiFi and Bluetooth use power to scan for devices and networks so if you’re not using them turn them off. It’s also a minor boost to your device security if you don’t have them constantly scanning for devices to connect to.

Close unnecessary Chrome tabs

Browser tabs use processor and memory, both of which demand power to work. Shutting down any tabs you’re not using will offer a minor extension to your battery life. It’s also good housekeeping and allows you to concentrate on those tabs you are using.

Turn down screen brightness

Turning your screen brightness down even a little bit can save a lot of battery. Depending on the light conditions where you are, you could easily run your screen at 50-60% brightness. This can add quite a while to battery life.

You could go the extra mile and disable services in Task Manager but that begins to impact how you use your Chromebook. If you’re really trying to squeeze more out of your battery, select More Tools from Settings and Task Manager. From there you can see what is using memory and can shut it down. It may make a small difference to how long your device will last between charges.