How to prolong the life of your laptop …

Friday, June 4th, 2010

My first rant and rave …

To take an overview of the work we’ve undertaken on serviced laptops in the last year, its clear there is a drop in the durability of newer models . Of the machines we’ve repaired – a lot are suffering from weak structural design, poorly designed cooling systems and seem to be designed more and more as a throwaway product once it breaks down. Some might think they give their laptop a really hard time as their machine doesn’t seem to last long enough or that laptops are being manufactured with durability being at the bottom of their priority list . Either could be true, however this is not a complaint but something that needs to be highlighted – manufacturers seem content in supplying laptops that have fragile elements and don’t have necessary structural durability.

We do get jobs in where people feel that because “its a laptop” it must be durable and robust, eg be put in difficult environments and still think that it will work as well as it would on a clean desktop. A Laptop is not “water proof” or “able to download updates while you walk downstairs” etc etc without a high / serious risk of system failure. Now there are laptops that are designed to take knocks and drops etc and these are known as tough-books which are great but the price is great too. As has been mentioned already most laptops that are bought today are fragile and struggle to survive a drop without severe consequences. I think in these financial times manufacturers of laptops and alike should have durability on the top of their design criteria.

Jumping off my soap box and getting back to what is today – there are many factors to helping a laptops survival – one of the main issues I experience is the issue of laptop cooling. Laptops can get very hot from the heat generated from the CPU and similar chips on the board. Therefore without a clean and dust free system in a cool environment with plenty room to “breath” etc – various types of failure are probable.

In around one in every three laptops we have serviced we have found & extracted 3 -4 mm of dust and fibers from the cooling parts (heat exchanger) of the laptop. PC Laptops suffer a lot more from this than Apple Mac laptops because of how they are manufactured but keeping cool is still a very important factor. Poor airflow is a killer of laptops and there some important ways to make sure this doesn’t happen.

  • Keep the airways clear – e.g don’t leave you laptop on the carpet / cushion / bed or similar without leaving something under it to allow airflow

  • Have your Laptop serviced on a regular basis- e.g. bring your laptop to a service engineer to check and clean out the air ventilation system properly.

  • Buy a laptop cooler – a great tool to make sure your system stays cool and crisp. Prices can range from £10 – £40 – have seen some great deals on play.com

Make your laptop stay alive longer by servicing it on a regular basis. If like a lot of people you’ve had a Laptop for a few years now and are finding it getting very noisy and hot – get in touch asap and see if we can prevent an inevitable failure.

You can call me – Graham on 07949 279 332 or 01484 86 00 18 to arrange a time etc to best fit your day etc.

N.B Cleaning a PC is only one part of making a system work well and keep cool there are other methods like the use of software programs that can cleverly keep your system checked and regulated. These methods will hopefully be covered at a later date.

Thank you
Graham Hallas

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