4 warning signs your laptop is about to fail

Times are tough as the world is going through a pandemic and everything we can do to save money is helpful. While restrictions have been eased and some are returning to their workplaces, others are still working remotely.

Few things are more frustrating than a slow computer, especially when you’re working on something important. Tap or click here for some tips on speeding up your PC or Mac.

Computer issues are virtually inevitable and range from minor to severe. Whatever the problem, before replacing your PC, Mac or laptop, take some time to solve the problems. We’re going to focus on the latter and help you diagnose and resolve problems you may experience with your portable computer.

1. Slow, sluggish performance
It’s never too late for a little spring cleaning, and we don’t mean your home. Clutter slows down your computer and can have nasty bugs. When was the last time you played Snood? View your apps and programs and uninstall or remove the ones you no longer use. If you paid for an app, you can reinstall it at a later date if needed.

Turn off your system tray icon to give your laptop a good boost. Do you need that weather program sitting there constantly telling you what it’s like? The same goes for programs that run on startup. These can be a serious hog on your system and drag everything down with them.

Updating your system is not only good for your security, but it can also help with performance. Developers release patches to streamline apps and operating systems, and you should always have the latest version. Use antivirus software to clean up bugs regularly.

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2. Random Errors or Crashing
Overheating is a major cause of laptop errors and crashes. Keep your device’s vents clear to aid circulation. You can also clean the vents with an air cleaner—dust also contributes to heat buildup.

Viruses and malware can spoil the performance of your laptop and cause many problems. Always have antivirus software running and set it to do regular checks. These are three reasons why these programs are so important.

Crashes can be attributed to software or hardware problems, although the latter is a more common cause. Check your motherboard and graphics drivers for the latest version and reinstall them if necessary. Peripheral drivers like printers and scanners can cause conflicts so disable any you have connected and see if anything changes.

If this doesn’t solve your problem, it could be a faulty part. Replacing these is cheaper than buying a whole new system, but if your hardware is pristine it might be worth looking into something new.

3. Hard Drive Issues
Check the capacity of your hard drive. If it’s almost full it won’t do so well. As we said above, get rid of programs and files you don’t need or back them up on the external drive. You can get terabyte drives nowadays without breaking the bank. Use it to store your old photos, videos and other files you don’t need immediate access to.

Cloud storage is becoming more common and is a great way to free up space on your device. Tap or click here for our recommended service.

Try disk defragmentation to make your hard drive run more efficiently. You can buy or download a program for this, although Windows has one built in that works fine and most modern Macs do this automatically. Be aware that defragging is not necessary if you have a solid-state drive and may even damage it.

Corrupted files mess with your hard drive and can force you out of programs and processes. Disk Checking software can detect bad sectors on your hard drive and try to repair them.

Unless you’re using a solid-state drive, hard drives wear out over time. You can get to the point where nothing will fix it. In this case, you want to recover as much data as possible and replace your hard drive.

4. Strange sounds are coming from inside the laptop
Most laptops make a little noise while running because the internal fan keeps everything cool. It can be loud or quiet as you perform various tasks. If you hear a distinct sound, such as grinding or rattle, the fan itself may be broken. This is an easy and cheap fix.

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