Computers have become a necessary part of our day to day at work, school, or just in the home. We talked previously about electronic waste and how important it is to reduce our carbon footprint of e-waste. One way to reduce our waste is by extending the life of the electronics we already have. While computers have gotten cheaper over the years this doesn’t mean that we need to throw out our old models as soon as a new one hits the market.
The life of your computer can be extended greatly by taking proper care of it. Here are a few tips to ensure that you are taking steps to keep your computer in good running order.
1) A dirty computer is no good. Keep it clean.
Pretty much every PC collects with dust, dirt, hair, and other outside particles. While this may not seem like such a big deal because all of these things are pretty small, they can actually wreak havoc on your PC when left uncleaned. When left uncleaned and given time to build up, the dust and grime can actually suffocate the hardware inside the PC causing it to generate more heat and therefore putting stress on the components. The total result of not keeping a PC clean is reducing its performance and can even be a contributing factor to a premature death of components.
A computer system should be thoroughly cleaned every 6-12 months depending on the environment in which the PC is in. Cleaning a PC is something that can be done without specialist knowledge.
2) Keep the air flow constant. Ventilate.
The fans inside of your computer help with issues of overheating and keeping your PC clean, but they will struggle to do their duty if the computers surroundings are stuffy. Ensure that your PC has plenty of space around it and access to cool air. It is best to keep the computer tower free of anything sitting on top of it or from being enclosed inside of a cabinet. Also, be sure to keep your computer away from any type of space heater or heating vent.
3) Power surge protection.
A power surge is a spike in your home’s electrical current. It is usually brief, but can cause damage to your appliances and home. This can especially be hard on your PC. The circuits of a PC are made up of components that are sensitive to electricity. Unplugging your PC and electronic devices during a lighting storm is essential to protecting it against potential surges as well as investing in a power surge to use daily. There are many options out there so find the one that best suits your needs.
4) Take care of the hard drive.
The hard drive of a computer is essential as everything is stored on it. However, they can become corrupt with file system errors and bad sectors. This can happen due to improper shutdowns and crashes. It is imperative that your computer be shutdown properly and that it is switched to off when not in use.
Corruption can be found by running the Check Disk tool that is built into Windows. This scan can take a few hours, but it is a great way to keep track of what is happening in your hard drive.
5) Protect against malware and use anti-virus.
Software protection is just as important as hardware protection. Viruses and malware can destroy your PC slowing it down drastically and in some cases you have to pay a large amount of money to have it cleared. There are people everywhere that want to take advantage of systems that are not protected. Antivirus software is imperative and there are plenty of free options as well.
We depend heavily on our laptops, PC’s, tablets, et cetera and in order to reduce our waste of electronics it is essential to take good care of what we have. The above tips are just a few ways to extend the life of your computer.