How to use Power Reserve mode on your Apple Watch

BY Kelly Hodgkins

Published 7 May 2015

Apple Watch

Apple’s Watch is designed to deliver enough battery life to last an entire day under normal usage. Not every day is going to be normal, and there are times when you will run out of juice before your day is done. In these circumstances, Apple has provided Power Reserve, a power saving mode for the Apple Watch that’ll minimize energy consumption when your battery level is critically low.

What is Power Reserve Mode

Power Reserve is a power saving mode that conserves battery life by turning off almost all important Watch functions, including notifications, fitness tracking, apps and more. In this mode, the Watch continues to function as a timepiece, only keeping and displaying the time.

How to Enable Power Reserve

You can enable Power Reserve in three different ways. First, the Watch will prompt you to enable Power Reserve at regular intervals when your battery decreases to 10 percent or less. When prompted, you can agree to turn on Power Reserve mode or ignore it and continue to use your Watch.

Power Reserve glance menu

If you want to turn on Power Reserve mode manually, you can press and hold the side button until the power menu appears. You then can drag the Power Reserve slider to the right to enable this feature. Lastly, Power Reserve mode can be found in the Power glance. Just swipe up on the watch face to access Glances, swipe to the Power glance, tap Power Reserve, and then tap Proceed.

How to disable Power Reserve

Once you enter Power Reserve, the only way to exit from this power-saving mode is to restart your Watch by holding down the side button until the Apple logo appears. In order to exit Power Reserve and resume normal operations, you must have enough charge remaining on the battery to power the device upon restart.

Monitoring your Battery Performance

Apple also added some basic battery stats into its Watch settings that allow you to view your usage times. Open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone, tap My Watch, and then go to General > Usage. Here you can view the Usage and Standby values, which when added together provide the elapsed time since the last full charge. You also can see the Power Reserve value, which estimates how long your Watch will last until its battery level drops to a critical level, and Power Reserve is enabled automatically.


Have you used Power Reserve mode in a pinch? Or is it a feature you will never use? Share your opinions on this power-saving feature in the comments below. If you are looking for more information on the Watch and its battery life, please read our handy tips on extending your Watch battery life.

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If you want to learn more about the Apple Watch, you can view additional tutorials on our Apple Watch Tips and Tricks page and our Apple Watch Guide page. If you have an area you would like to see covered in this ongoing series of Watch tutorials or have discovered your own handy tips or tricks, please share them in the comments.