Posts Tagged ‘Laptop Tips’

Noise from Used Laptop Solved by Cleaning

Wednesday, December 28th, 2011

In this photo is an older laptop which a customer had brought in because another tech had told them that they needed a new hard drive because there was a clicking sound coming from the laptop. This is just a cheap Dell Inspiron 5100 and since the cost for the job would require a new HDD, data backup, OS installation and labor costs, it was getting pretty pricey. So they brought it to us to check out for a second opinion on the diagnosis and find out why their laptop was making that noise.

The funny thing is that there was indeed a clicking sound coming from the laptop, but it was definitely not the hard drive. It was a very small twig which had gotten lodged into the heat-sink area and the fan was hitting it making a faint clicking sound. So for a much lower price we were able to quickly access the part and remove the offending twig which was making the sound as well as give it a thorough cleaning.

Laptop Heatsink Fan Combo

So here is a tip if you are looking to buy a used laptop and want to help to prolong its lifespan.

Over the years we have found various things like a blade of grass or other outdoor type of object in them and since they are portable it is not unusual to find things like this when you work on a lot of laptops. However, it is as easy as using a source of compressed air in order to blow out any dust or debris which can get caught in the fan area of the laptop.

We have offered various other tips and suggestions for easy ways that you can help keep your laptop clean before and this is one good example of why this particular tip is worth doing every once in a while. On many used laptop models this area will consist of a heatsink fan combo unit.

If you look at the picture of this you can see how the little brass area which sort of looks like a grill has the ability to accumulate a lot of dust and debris within its fins. It is really important to keep this area clean so that the laptop can stay cooler when it is powered on.

It is not necessary to dismantle the laptop in order to properly blow out any debris in most instances. However some used laptops and cheap netbooks will have accumulated a fair amount of this and will need to be manually cleaned, but this is only on the rare occasion. The more common situation is that simply by using a can of compressed air you should be able to completely clean that area of the used laptop (fan as well as heatsink) which could impede proper air flow. Finding a bargain on one of the cheap laptops under 100 which we showcase is definitely exciting, but even when the laptop is in immaculate condition it never hurts to clean out the fan area. It only takes a few minutes and the compressed air is fairly cheap too.

Simple Fix for Used Laptops Slow Boot up

Monday, September 6th, 2010

Slow start up times on laptop computers may be caused by old network drives that are no longer needed. Occasionally we have seen used laptops and customer laptops that would pass all tests and diagnostics yet still suffer from extremely slow boot ups. While in the beginning of the troubleshooting process there are common starting points that need to be looked at, the initial idea is to determine whether the likely cause of this is due to a hardware or a software problem.

There is one not very common yet worthwhile thing to check before proceeding to any in depth diagnostics unless that is part of that particular procedure, which may be done anyway, and that is to take a look for any network drives which may be holding things up. Windows will try to connect to the network drive during the boot process and if it cannot make the connection, it is going to wait. The real problem with this is that Windows will continue to wait so that the entire process in basically stuck in this state.

When this is setup on a laptop computer there is an option to set it to reconnect at logon. Yet if you are sure that you do not need this, you may consider not choosing this, or in this example disconnecting. This will remove the need for the operating system on the used laptop to wait on a connection from another drive, which may not exist at all if you are not actually on the network.

  • Start
  • My Computer
  • Tools Menu
  • Disconnect Network Drive

When you know that the drive is unnecessary this can be a super easy fix to a really bothersome problem. We all like our cheap laptops under 100 to be as fast and responsive as any computer that we use. Although this is not a common issue, sometimes used laptops that have not had the operating system reinstalled fresh will have old configurations such as this that are simple to resolve.

Matching Used Laptops to their Power Sources

Sunday, April 25th, 2010

Since laptops are able to be powered off of batteries it only makes sense that you should always try to keep yours charged. In the event that the charge drains all the way you may have to get it into the charger and keep it there for quite a while in order to regain the full charge. In the past some batteries performed poorly after this process, but these days most laptop batteries are able to recover quite nicely. This is basically a representation of how technology has improved over the years.

In the unfortunate event that there is a battery issue with your laptop then you may want to check into buying another one simply as a spare. This is a common practice among laptop users who need to essentially have a backup power source. These users may spend extensive amounts of time away from any normal power source and therefore the battery becomes extremely important. Otherwise there are no other alternatives to power your laptop. Depending on where you are and how important the use of the computer is will tend to exemplify the importance of having a backup solution.

Some people will buy used laptop batteries in an effort to save on expenses. Just like buying refurbished laptops offers many benefits, so to does this approach for batteries. Not unlike any situation where you are buying a used item, you should be familiar with some of the more pertinent specifics involved. If you are certain that your used laptop will take the exact model number of the battery then you should not have any issues with the fit. Model numbers are usually clearly marked and therefore offer an easy reference point. This type of proactive maintenance has the ability to save you a whole lot of headaches if anything like this ever happens to you.