Upkeep and Care – Laptops / Notebooks

laptop

ByteColumn introduces “Upkeep and Care” series – articles that focusses on care and periodic maintenance of your products. These articles are made to be instructive and easy-to-follow without too much theory and explanations.

The second things presented are LAPTOPS.

laptop
laptop

General

  • Try not to spill fluid on the laptop

  • Donot keep the laptop at any place where it can be stepped-on, sat-on or damaged. Take care to keep it away from children.

  • Use a carry case for your device that is specifically designed for laptop transport. Donot carry your notebook in any other bag or stuff it with other luggage.

  • Defragment your data in hard disk and schedule disk scan atleast once in a month. More often if you do copying/moving files frequently.

  • Take frequent backups (once in a month, at least). In case of any crash, damage or loss, this prevents data loss.

Now, let us look at the components one-by-one:

Battery

Notebooks are powered by batteries and, just like cell phones, they require a great deal of care during usage if you want them to last really long. Here are some tips for the same:

  • Batteries must be fully charged before the first use to maximize their potential capacity. Charge it completely when it is bought newly.

  • Use the charger that is specified by the manufacturer. Don’t use cheap chargers manufactured by companies with doubtful reputation.

  • Try to avoid complete discharging of your laptop battery. When the warning shows for last 10% or 20% remaining, plug into a power source immediately so as to avoid total discharge. This also avoids potential loss of data and improper shutdowns.

  • Shut down your laptop when not in use for a long time. “Sleep” or “Suspend” is an option only for short intervals.

  • Keep your batteries cool and avoid leaving laptops in hot cars or direct sunlight.

  • Remove the battery if you are not going to use laptop for more than three days.

  • While using laptop from battery (unplugged from A/C power):

    • Check for bluetooth or Wi-Fi and switch them off, if not in use.

    • Unplug any USB devices that are not necessary.

    • Eject any optical disks that are not of immediate use.

    • Keep the brightness setting in your laptop at a low-level which is comfortable for you.

    • Turn off background programs and close those that are not used, to save on processor usage.

    • Use headphones to hear music rather than in-built laptop speakers.

Screen

Read on to know how to maintain, clean and generally take good care of your laptop screen.

  • Donot lift the laptop using screen as this may damage the hinge.

  • Donot expose the screen to oil and dust.

  • If the screen is wet, dry it immediately with a soft cloth.

  • Donot use sharp objects on the laptop screen as this may cause permanent damage to the display capabilities.

  • To clean the screen, use a LCD/LED cleaning solution (use this in moderate amounts, too much of it can cause problems) and a soft cloth to gently wipe off the surface. Take care to power off the laptop and remove the battery before attempting any cleaning process.

  • If your screen gets damaged and/or cracked, power off the laptop and stop using the device. Continuous usage under damaged condition may take the device beyond repairable condition. Take your notebook to a company-operated service centre or similar well-reputed professional care as soon as possible.

Keyboard

  • Take care not to spill any liquid on the keyboard as this may damage the components inside. Try to avoid keeping fluids of any kind nearby where it can be accidentally spilled on the laptop.

  • Donot press the keys hardly. This practice of pressing keys in a damaging fashion is quite common among gamers. Try to use an exernal USB keyboard for gaming and other intensive typing activities.

  • To clean the keyboard, use a pressurised air container that can be bought in any computer accessory shop. If you want to remove the keys and clean, make sure you can reassemble the keyboard. Take care while doing so.

  • If any key shows symptoms of malfunction, take the device to a service centre or professional care as soon as possible.

External Devices

No matter what type of laptop you use, you’ll plug in an external component sooner or later. A few tips to get you going:

  • Make sure the devices you use are from a reputable brand, otherwise, it may spoil the ports and/or laptop.

  • Before you plug in any data device (optical drive, external hard disk, usb pen drives, ipod …etc), be sure that it is from a known source and without any harmful data. Malwares, spywares, viruses and other harmful softwares must be prevented from entering your laptop, lest personal data be stolen for misuse.

  • Be sure to disconnect any device that you are not going to use.

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