It’s all very well, basking in the glorious sunshine that we have in the UK right now, courtesy of the current heat-wave, if you’ve got nothing better to do than to sunbathe. But back in the business world, many people are finding that their computers are making just as hard work of this weather as their operators are.
Slow operating speeds, unannounced crashes and, in some instances, totally overcooked hardware, are just some of the problems that people are experiencing. So now is the time to take a few precautions to protect your computer and here are a few top tips that you may find useful.
Clean is Cool
It’s desktop PCs that tend to suffer more in a hotter environment than anything else. This is because their inside workings accumulate dust, dirt and strands of hair and fluff. So it’s a good idea to periodically open up your PC and give it a little spring clean. This will remove rubbish that can gum up the fan and get embedded in between components, which can cause problems with conductivity etc. You can get canned air, which is just perfect for this sort of cleaning application.
One of the first things that we all like to do in order to try and cool off when the weather gets too hot is to strip off a few clothes, so why should your computer be any different? If you work in a relatively clean air environment, you can strip the outer casing off your computer. However, if you do decide to do this, make sure that there are no prying fingers around that might touch any exposed components and get an electric shock for their trouble.
Give it Room to Breathe
If you’re anything like most people, your computer may well be surrounded by plenty of clutter. Files, piles of paper, empty teacups – all of these things help to restrict the free space around your computer and thereby limit the movement of air. Also, be particularly careful to make sure that any air vents in your computer casing are left unobstructed.
Avoid Direct Sunlight
Sunlight that streams in through the office windows can magnify the rays of the sun, intensifying the heat onto any object that is in its path. So you should try and ensure that your computer is not left exposed. Don’t forget, of course, that the sun moves in the sky as the day progresses, so although your machine may be in the shade in the morning, by mid-afternoon, it could be festering away in bright sunlight. And never leave your computer unattended and exposed to direct sunlight for any length of time, such as when you pop out to lunch.
Don’t Direct a Fan on your Computer
One common mistake that many people make is to direct a fan at their computer. It’s far better to remove the casing as suggested earlier. Fans can direct dust and dirt into the computer, which can cause further problems.
The type of advice offered above is all well and good in terms of standard computers and laptops, but even then it’s always a good idea to talk to your IT manager before doing anything like removing the outer casing. This is even more important when dealing with specialist computer hardware, such as mini PCs or rack mounted CPUs. This sort of bespoke hardware is provided by suppliers, such as g2digital and their specialist designs may already incorporate sufficient heat protection.
The author is a professional freelance writer who writes blogs and articles for businesses in many sectors, including the high-tech market, keeping the public appraised of the latest developments in cutting edge technology, and helping people to care for, and maintain their gadgets in best working order.