The standard home computer is made up of about 8 to 15 highly complex components or parts, ranging from the hard drive and RAM to keyboard and mouse. They can often work for years without a single hint of a problem and then for what appears to be no reason at all, stop working. The amount of things that can go wrong with the hardware is limited, as generally a part will work or it won’t, but here are some of the leading issues that can occur.
1. The computer Overheats
Overheating is normally a result of a CPU fan fault. The CPU fan is in place to draw heat away from the CPU (Central processing unit), which can become very hot when in use. When this fan gets old or clogged with dust from not having been cleaned and stops working, the CPU will overheat, resulting in a computer shutdown or CPU burnout. How to avoid this: open the casing and use an air-spray to clean the CPU fan every now and again especially if the computer is in a dusty/dirty area.
2. The Hard Drive wears out
Your hard drive stores all your data and every time you access anything form photos to music to running programs or just turning the computer on, the hard drive is spinning. In time this motor can wear out and fail. How to avoid this: almost impossible to predict and prevent other than to take regular backups to avoid losing data.
3. RAM becomes faulty
RAM (Random-access memory, a form of computer data storage) is extremely delicate and can be affected by static electricity, this is very often the cause for the RAM to become faulty, RAM is a piece of hardware that stores data for very quick access and is highly sensitive changes in electrical conditions. – ADVICE to avoid: ensure that your computer has all the required grounding and rubber spacers on the Mother Board
4. Motherboard fault
Motherboards are the “back bone” of entire computer and generally are rather hard to single out as the faulty item, with it being such a complex component. The fault might be so tiny that is invisible to the naked eye. Generally the Motherboard is stable and is most affected by power surges.
5. CD ROM Drive fault
When a CD Rom Drive starts giving problems, like not reading CD’s or DVD’s the first thing to do is ensure that the lens is not dirty, 1 grain of dust could cause this device to stop working 100%. CD and DVD Rom’s use a laser to read the data of the disc, this laser needs to have the disc spin at a certain speed and be in a very clean space. When the CD rom starts misreading dirt is the most likely culprit, but it could be that the motor that spins the disc is faulty.
6. Bonus Tip:
Computers, when they power up, do a POST – Power on Self-test. POST is a self test that is run by the computer early in the boot process from the BIOS. It checks to see that everything is present and functioning. Malfunctions are indicated by a series of beeps, the meaning of which depends on the BIOS manufacturer. Reference your motherboard documentation or search on the web for the explanations.