Personal computers are a big purchase decision. You put time and effort into researching the best option for you and make the investment with your hard earned money. We store them in cases, keep them out of reach of children and do what we can to protect our investment. But every once in awhile we make mistakes.
Here are seven tips and tricks to help keep your computer in great shape for years to come.
1. Don’t Put the Computer Directly on Your Blankets
Keep the computer on another surface that won’t suffocate it — unless you want to replace the hard drive before it’s necessary. Blankets tend to block the fans from pulling in the air needed to cool the laptop as it runs (especially if it’s charging). A lap desk is an excellent solution to this problem.
2. Don’t Eat or Drink Over It
How many times have you had close calls with drinks near your keyboard? Even one spill is one time too many. You can keep drinks nearby but make sure they aren’t close enough to spill on your keyboard — or have a lid in case you do knock it over. Try to avoid eating above your keyboard as well. Crumbs and other particles will fall into the crevices, which can cause problems down the road.
3. Protect Your Investment with a Case
You put your expensive smartphone in a case, so why wouldn’t you put your more expensive computer in a case? There are many options available from hard covers (like a cell phone cover), to sleeves and carrying cases. To protect your computer at all times, consider a hard case, but any sort of protection case is better than an exposed computer.
4. Run Backups Once a Week
You never know when your hard drive might burn out, so it’s crucial to regularly back up your computer — when the files are gone, they’re gone. In some cases you’ll be able to recover some of your files, but not all of them and you may need to hire someone to retrieve anything at all. That’s a costly endeavor when you could have had a spare copy yourself. Backing up on an external hard drive can also help free up your computer’s memory if you need it. You can also connect to cloud storage for simple and efficient backups that can happen automatically.
5. Store Your Backup Discs Where You Can Find Them
When your computer is on the fritz, uninstalling and reinstalling a program can sometimes fix the problem. But how can you do that if you don’t know where you put the discs? Label them and put them in a safe place that you’ll remember so you can use them when you need to. A good way to do this is to put the discs in a CD case or a three-ring binder so they all stay in one place.
6. Install Antivirus Software
This is one of the most important ways to prevent your computer from expiring before its time, especially if you have a PC. The software may be pricey, but it’ll be well worth it when you’re attacked and you save yourself a trip to the computer doctor and a few hundred pounds.
7. Don’t Let Anybody Else Use Your Computer
This may seem harsh, but try to think of how you’ll feel if you hand it over to someone who downloads a file that contains a virus? You won’t feel good, but to make matters worse you can’t reasonably ask that person to fix your computer. You’re the one who let him or her borrow it, after all — and how were they supposed to know that file contained a virus? Keep your computer to yourself.
There are many preventative measures you can take to avoid doing any damage to your computer. Be mindful not to download files from sources you don’t know, and be careful carrying your laptop. Treat it well and it can last ye