Sometimes it’s obvious you need to get your laptop fixed, like if you’ve seen the ominous “Blue Screen of Death.” Or maybe your laptop won’t even turn on.
Other times, figuring out when to get laptop repair can be a little more difficult. Is your laptop simply getting older and does it just need more love? Or is it time to take it to an expert to get it fixed? Here are 5 telltale signs you need laptop repair.
Your Laptop is Getting Loud
If your laptop has become noisy when you use it, there could be a variety of issues at play. To troubleshoot, let your laptop cool down for ten minutes then restart it. Wipe down the fan with a dusting cloth and see if this is what is causing the noise.
Take a look at the CD drive. Eject the drawer and see if the noise stops.
If you are hearing mysterious clicking or cracking noises, this could be a bad sign – your hard drive is failing – and fast.
If you’ve determined that your CD drive is causing the noise, you can sometimes remove the CD or DVD and use a CD cleaning product that can fix your problem altogether.
If this doesn’t work, or you hear your hard drive failing, bring it into a laptop repair shop to get your hardware looked at by an expert.
Your Laptop Just Won’t Connect
When you are experiencing connectivity or network issues, this can be really annoying, but it doesn’t always mean you need laptop repair.
Connectivity issues might include: always needing to locate your home network; always needing to type in your network password, the internet always dropping, or Bluetooth issues.
Before you bring your laptop to the repair shop, turn your router on and off to see if the router is the issue. You can also check to see if your Intenet Service Provider is working properly in your area. If other devices can connect to your network without a problem, you’ll know your laptop specifically is experiencing a network problem.
You can use your laptop’s features to identify and repair network problems, where you’ll be guided through a wizard that might restart your laptop’s adapter or make changes to your wireless settings. If this doesn’t solve your issue, you’ll want to bring it in for repair.
Your Keyboard isn’t working
If your laptop isn’t registering that you are typing, you might have pressed the “num lock” key on accident which might be preventing you from using the keypad. Press the button again and see if you can use the keyboard now.
If “num lock” isn’t the issue, dust and grime might be causing your problem. Use compressed air and clean between the keys as you hold your laptop at an angle.
If you see a damaged key on your keyboard or if the compressed air doesn’t work, your keyboard might have been deactivated. Head to settings and look for “keyboard status.” This will let you know if your keyboard driver is up and running. If you see problems with the driver, it’s time to bring your laptop in for repair.
A Pixelated or blurry screen
If your screen is damaged or broken, you’ll want to bring it to a laptop repair shop. Practically every screen repair requires that you crack open your laptop and use special tools. Besides, you’re potentially dealing with broken glass that can injure you if you don’t know what you’re doing. Even worse, any almost every type of repair attempt on your screen can void your manufacturer’s warranty. Leave this one up to the professionals.
Malware or computer viruses are pretty common these days – you’d be pretty hard up to find someone who hasn’t caught a bug online. There are a few common signs that your computer has been infected – running slowly, spammy pop-ups, being on a browser that redirects you to sites you didn’t intend to go to, or your computer just might not stay on.
If you think you have a computer virus, head to your laptop’s settings, and reboot in Safe Mode. When your laptop has booted into safe mode, head to your anti-malware program and update it to make sure their virus definitions are in working order.
Run a system scan – bearing in mind this could take a couple of hours to complete. Then restart your computer and do a quick scan with the same program. If any malicious programs or files have been located, your malware program should quarantine them and your laptop should work normally.
Backup your files at this point and create a system restore point that you can default to if you get infected again. Keep your anti-malware program updated daily. You can typically set this software up to self-update at night when you’re not using your laptop.
If after rebooting into safe mode and running a full system scan, you still believe your laptop is infected, it’s best to bring it into a shop to get it looked at.
It can be hard to figure out what is normal wear and tear and when you should bring your device into a shop for laptop repair. Luckily, most repair shops will offer free diagnostics, so you won’t be charged if you bring your laptop in and nothing is wrong. With nothing to lose, it might be best to err on the side of caution when your laptop starts acting strangely.