In this article I would like to talk about one of the more scary aspects of computers and computer repairs, “Things that go bump in the night.”
As I was lying in bed the other night I heard a noise, and I wasn’t sure where it was coming from. As I got up to investigate, the sound suddenly stopped. When I laid back down the sound started up again, this time I was able to track the sound down.
It was a low level moan coming from my computer. Thinking I could deal with it later, I shut the computer off and went back to bed.
The next day I returned home from work and was just settling down on the couch when my wife informed me there was “something desperately wrong with our computer.” She said she went to turn it on and it is making a loud noise now. She said she just turned it right off. Sure enough, I turned it on and the cooling fan on the power supply was moaning away. I let it run for a few minutes and the noise seemed to diminish.
But, I knew it needed to be fixed: Not only do we need access to the internet for email and other things, the wife cannot live without her recipe websites.
I shut the computer down and I opened the case and found that the CPU fan was in dire need of a good cleaning. I cleaned it up and got all the dust bunnies out of it and lo and behold noises are gone.
I am sure nearly all of us have experienced noises from our computers. Some noises are normal. Although a computer is mostly solid state electronics, there are a few components that move, and as any computer engineer can tell you, if it is a “moving part” it will eventually fail.
Along with the cooling fan in the power supply, computers have cooling fans on the processor, and case mounted auxiliary cooling fans that provide additional cooling. All of these fans can and do occasionally fail. Cleaning does not always fix them and they have to be replaced.
The next component that moves and is subject to wear and tear is the hard drive. As I’ve explained in previous articles, this is where your important data and files are stored. As the disks inside the drive spins at a very high rate of speed they can eventually wear out and hit what is called the seek head. Once this happens damage to the disk’s surface can result in a loss of data.
We call hard drives with this condition “serious clickers” due to the fact a clicking noise is very audible during the process of the seek head moving across the disks.
If you’re hearing funny computer noises, make sure not to delay getting it fixed. Serious problems can result from failure to address and repair noisy fans and clicking hard drives. Tech Experts has a staff of trained certified professional technicians to help isolate and eliminate these “noises in the night.” Give us a call at (734) 457-5000.