Nearly everyone will face a time when they will need to seek computer service for one reason or another. It’s important to think about this issue before you’re in the middle of a large project and suddenly are facing a crash. Here are some things to think about regarding the health of your machine.

1. It is important to back up all important files which are stored on your system. Be sure to store those irreplaceable documents and photos on memory devices such as sticks or disks. Also, when you’re working on a lengthy document, remember to hit the “save” button often during the creation of your work. You can’t save something too often, but everyone’s probably had the experience of not saving items often enough. It can be devastating!

2. Clean your computer on a regular basis. Dust and debris can work its way into your system and literally clog the works. Keep it in a dirt free environment to begin with. Wipe and vacuum the surfaces to avoid buildup. Clean out the internal cookies and old junk files on your hard drive on a regular basis, as well.

3. When a computer does break down, you may bring it into a local store front repair service, have the technicians come to your home, or they may be able to work on it from a remote location. Many times the service department is able to instruct an owner over the phone in order to have service performed on it. In order to have warranty work completed on a computer, it is often necessary to ship the system to the company’s out-of-state location at the owner’s expense. If the issue is indeed covered by warranty, it will be fixed free of charge and returned within a matter of weeks. The warranty is often extended after this type of repair, as well.

4. When a PC or laptop does break down, it may be time to ask oneself whether a repair is in order or if it’s time for a purchase of a more modern alternative. If your machine is old and slow even before it crashes, the day it dies may be the day to invest in a new system. The machines on today’s market are superior in many ways to their counterparts of five years ago. The costs have come down, as well. A good way to decide is to get an estimate of repair for the older system and weigh it against the prices of a newer model.

A few hundred dollars for a brand new PC vs. merely opting for a temporary fix via computer service calls may be well worth the outlay of cash.