Much is made of the need to protect your computer data and prevent viruses and other software related problems. This is with good reason. Nobody wants to lose data or have to deal with the expense of computer repair. Often though, computer owners calling on computer repair and data recovery services in New Jersey, do so because of physical computer damage. So just to change things up a little, this article explores some common causes of physical damage that can result in the need for repair.
The focus here is mostly on laptop computers. Their portable nature makes them more prone to incidents and accidents. When New Jersey computer repair shops fix a broken computer, more often than not it’s a laptop which has been involved in an incident. Here are three common causes of accidental laptop damage, together with some hints on avoidance.
Liquid Spilt Onto Keyboard
Water, coffee, Coca Cola, Alcoholic drinks and milk are just some of the liquids that get accidentally spilled onto computer keyboards. If the computer is a desktop, the worst cases generally require a replacement keyboard. On a laptop though, the effects of a spillage can be disastrous. However, if you act very quickly, it is possible to minimize the damage and avoid the need for data recovery from a destroyed laptop.
As soon as the spillage happens, disconnect all power sources to the computer. This means unplug the mains power adapter where it connects to your laptop and also remove the battery. Next you should hold down the power button for around 30 seconds. This will discharge any remaining electricity in your laptops capacitors.
After discharging the electricity, the rest is mostly a waiting game. Find a dry, cool place, lay a towel down and open your laptop as far as it will go, without forcing it. Now lay the laptop, face down on the towel and leave it to drain. You really need to leave it untouched for at least a week.
Eventually you can try to switch on your laptop and see what happens. If you are fortunate, your laptop will start up and work normally. If so, you should immediately back up your data to an external device. The computer may fail after a short while, so doing a quick backup will save you needing professional hard drive data recovery. If your computer does continue to work normally, you may still need to have the keyboard replaced by a New Jersey computer repair shop, especially if the spilled liquid was sugary or acidic.
Although this solution sounds very drawn out, it is the only sensible way to try and save your laptop. Never try to use a hairdryer or anything similar because this can drive liquid deeper into your laptop’s innards. Just get your computer upside down as soon as possible and leave it to drain.
Laptop is Dropped
As portable as they are, laptops are always at risk of being dropped by their owners. If you accidentally drop your laptop, the risk of damage depends on the state of the laptop at the time of the incident. For example:
Laptop powered up and open – Highest risk of damage
Laptop powered off and open – High risk of damage
Laptop powered on and closed – Fairly high risk of damage
Laptop powered off and closed – Least risk of serious damage
When a fully powered-up laptop is dropped, it can easily sustain serious damage. The motherboard and hard drive in particular are more susceptible to damage when a laptop is switched on. Even if your laptop is powered off and closed though, a fall onto a solid surface is unlikely to be inconsequential.
Most laptop casings are not extensively engineered to protect against falls. They are designed to protect only against knocks and jolts while being carried. LCD screens can be broken by a fall, power jacks can be impacted and components can be unseated. To avoid an unscheduled visit to your New Jersey Computer repair guru, the best thing to do is mitigate the risk of your laptop being dropped. There are a number of measures you can take:
Before you move your laptop even over a short distance, shut it down completely and close it.
When carrying your laptop over all but the shortest distances, put it into a protective sleeve.
While carrying your laptop on any journey, whether on foot or by vehicle, put it into a hold-all or backpack.
When moving your laptop in the office, disconnect the power leads and stow them. Laptops often get dropped because of trailing power leads which get caught and pull the laptop from the owner’s hands.
If you need to move your laptop over a short distance, carry it in both hands. It may not be heavy, but carrying it in one hand or under your arm is more likely to result in it being dropped accidentally.
If your laptop should get dropped, the best advice is to take it to a computer repair shop immediately and have it checked over. Don’t try to use the laptop before getting it checked. If there is any internal damage, attempts to use the computer may actually worsen the situation.
Laptop Screen Damage
As modern laptops become ever thinner, so their screens become more delicate and liable to damage. While dropping a computer may cause damage to many components, it only takes a bit of excess pressure to damage the screen on a thin laptop. This pressure could be caused by something as simple as placing another item on the closed laptop. Prevention is simple: Never put anything heavier than a thin notepad on top of your laptop when it’s closed. There is no real cure for a damaged screen. You will need to have the screen replaced by a computer repair professional.
Most Damage Can Be Repaired
Never assume that a laptop is damaged beyond repair. Have an expert check it over, however bad the damage looks. Almost any damage can be repaired by replacing components. As long as the repair estimate is less than half the cost of a replacement computer, you should go ahead and get your laptop fixed. That’s the advice from Dave’s Computers, your honest and affordable computer repair service in New Jersey.
Dave’s team will assess any damage to your computer and give you genuine advice as to whether a repair is worthwhile. If you have a damaged laptop, drop into the store or give Dave’s Computers a call on 908-428-9558.