A computer is a big investment. The total value of your computer is not only computed by the money you have spent on the hardware and software programs you are using; you have to take into account the work you have stored in it and the number of hours you have saved while working with the aid of your computer. Thus, a broken or malfunctioning PC is more than just a mere nuisance to its user. A computer that fails to work can often mean lost time and money!
Computer failure can be caused by a variety of factors. Some of the most common causes are viruses, faulty power supply, hardware problems, or something as simple as loose cable connections. The best way to extend the life of your computer and avoid or delay the need for computer repair is by caring for it. Proper computer care constitutes performing routine maintenance and applying safe practices when using the PC.
Care Tips to Prolong PC Life
Here are eight easy things you can do today that will help extend your computer’s productive life:
1. Install an anti-virus program.
This is one of the most basic yet highly important security measures that you can do for your PC. There are many free anti-virus programs available online. PC Advisor lists some of the best anti-virus programs for 2014. The top five on its list are Symantec Norton 360 2014, Bitdefender Total Security 2014, G Data TotalProtection 2014, Kaspersky PURE 3.0 Total Security review, and eScan Total Security Suite 1. It is strongly advised to install the full-version of anti-virus programs so the user can get complete protection and have a firewall installed, too.
2. Avoid overheating.
Excessive heat can damage your PC. Keep your computer in a cool area. When working, make sure that the fans of your PC are not blocked by soft surfaces. For laptops, you can buy cooling pads that provide extra protection from heat. Use a can of air spray to clean your PC fans.
3. Back up files.
Keep your files safe because the hard drive is bound to fail after a few years. You can use cloud-based solutions or purchase an external hard drive. It may not be a good idea to back up files to your secondary hard drive as this may also fail.
4. Don’t open unknown emails.
If you receive an email from a suspicious source, no matter how interesting the email subject may be, don’t open it! Don’t click on any links or download attachments that may contain viruses.
5. Install an anti-spyware or malware program, too.
Spyware tracks a user’s online activity and collects information about browsing habits without the person’s consent. Malaware refers to malicious software that can damage computers. There are also software programs that records keystrokes, making the user vulnerable to hacking. Anti-spyware and malware protects you from these threats.
6. Use a battery back-up.
Lightning and power surges can damage your computer, particularly the motherboard. Protect your computer from power surges by using a battery back-up or a surge protector.
7. Use social media with caution.
Social media can also be a source of viruses. Avoid clicking suspicious links and sharing sensitive information on social media.
8. Ask IT experts to perform maintenance work.
Computers need to be checked regularly to make sure all its programs are updated and the hardware is in great condition. Ask IT technicians and support specialists to tune up your PC. These professionals can also give reliable troubleshooting advice and tips on how to maximize your computer.