How to make your electronic equipment last longer
The festive season is upon us and many of us will either give or receive electronic gifts for Christmas. Be kind to your electronics and make them last!
Here are a few tips to make your electronic equipment last longer
CHARGE BATTERIES STRATEGICALLY
Batteries degrade over time. Newer devices use lithium-ion batteries and for those it’s best to avoid a full zero to 100 percent charge, which can shorten their lifespan.
You may have a lot of old chargers around, but because a charger seems to fit a device doesn’t mean the voltage and amperage are correct. A device could get fried if they’re wrong, and it’s also best to stay away from potentially underpowered knockoffs and stick to authorized gear.
AVOID EXTREME COLD
Most technology is engineered for use at “normal” temperatures. The International Business Times lists a number of ways cold weather can damage technology: premature battery drain, slow or shattered touchscreens, and even a build-up of damaging liquid condensation.
STEER CLEAR OF HEAT, TOO
Very hot conditions can be just as bad, with hard drives on older computers especially vulnerable to failure from high temperatures.
KEEP IT DRY
While some phones such are finally becoming more water-resistant, water or other liquids remain a no-go for most gadgets, especially laptops. Keep beverages at a safe distance from computers.
DON’T IGNORE THOSE SOFTWARE UPDATES
It’s easy to ignore software updates for devices. But, it’s important to make the time. Updates are how developers fix bugs, and more importantly, combat critical security vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit, potentially stealing data or slowing down a machine with malware.
GET A GOOD CASE
One good drop can kill a phone, tablet, or laptop. Smartphones are particularly vulnerable, since they go everywhere with us. Computers that stay put may not need a special case, but a basic neoprene laptop sleeve is recommended for anyone with a laptop.
LEAVE IT ON MOST OF THE TIME
This might sound counter-intuitive, but that’s not always the case. For example, leaving a laptop on is less stressful to the system than turning it on and off several times a day. As for smartphones, leave them on, too — powering down won’t actually preserve the battery.
KEEP IT CLEAN
Dusty vents or ports can slow a computer. Use compressed air to get rid of it, as well as any crumbs gumming up the keyboard.
USE A SURGE PROTECTOR
Power surge protectors can protect against file corruption and data drive failure caused by power spikes, at least up to a certain voltage. Beware: Most surge protectors look just like power strips, and basic power strips don’t offer real protection.
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