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How to extend the life of your laptop battery

by Lou Horton on February 11, 2019

For the last several years most laptops have been built using Lithium-Ion batteries. While these batteries are lighter and have a greater life than their predecessors, the way that you use the battery can greatly impact the useful life. These modern batteries do not have “memory” like some older batteries but there are several things that you can do to make your battery last longer.  Lets dive in to what you can do to make your battery last longer.

There are two primary factors that will greatly impact the life of a Lithium-Ion battery: operating temperature and average charge level. You want to keep these batteries as cool as possible. Besides the obvious things like not leaving your laptop in a hot car, you can also minimize the operating temperature by not keeping the battery plugged into the charger unless it is actively being charged. When these batteries are plugged into the charger and fully charged, the internal temperature is typically about 45°C (113°F). A laptop that is run always plugged into the charger will lose about 35% of the total capacity in the first year and even more as the battery ages. If you need to always have your system plugged in (using a docking station for example) it is best to remove the battery. If you have the battery charged up to about 40% capacity and then remove it, the battery will remain viable for a long time.

It is not a good practice to fully discharge your battery on a regular basis before recharging it. Lithium-Ion batteries do best when they are recharged for short periods of time on a regular basis. An ideal usage pattern would be to run the laptop on the battery until the remaining charge is about 30-40% of the total capacity and then charging the battery to full capacity. Once the system is charged you should once again unplug it if possible.

We hope that you found this information useful. Please contact us at (630) 444-7220 or https://computer-repair-now.com if you need any assistance with your computer.

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Laptop still works after liquid spill! … for now.

by Lou Horton on February 7, 2019

Sooner or later most frequent computer users have some sort of accident which involves a little bit of liquid splashing on their laptop computer.  While drying the computer off, placing it in a bin of rice etc. may allow the computer to still run.  This is not a permanent fix.  Any sort of moisture left deep within your computer will corrode over time.  Unless you want a surprise in the future where your motherboard is bad, follow these simple steps following any liquid spill:

  1. Immediately shut down the computer following the spill.
  2. Disconnect the power cord from the computer.
  3. Remove the battery from the laptop.
  4. Make an appointment with a qualified technician to have the system looked at.  Before the technician powers up the unit, it should be completely disassembled and cleaned properly.  This not only reduces the possibility of any more immediate damage, but will eliminate the future corrosion that will happen if the liquid spill is left unattended.

In order to schedule an appointment for service, you can always contact us at 630-444-7220 or through computer-repair-now.com.

 

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Five New Year’s Resolutions for Your Computer

by Lou Horton on January 17, 2019

Running the Best Security Software

Most computers today run at least some form of basic antivirus. In the modern day however, threats have evolved to be more sophisticated, more damaging, and much more common. Ransomware, malware, phishing, and zero-day attacks all work to attack unpatched systems without strong security.

Today, to keep up with increasing threats, you need a complete internet security package. A layered system means more than just virus scanning. A comprehensive security package includes prevention, detection, firewall and system monitoring at a minimum. These layers work together to provide security many times stronger than a stand-alone system.

Reliable, up-to-date, security keeps you safe online. It’s a resolution you simply can’t afford to skip.  We recommend Avast Internet Security

Back Up Your Files

Most people have important documents, pictures and music on their computer that they never want to lose.  There are many manual ways to back up your system but this is often only performed occasionally by most computer users.  The best solution is a cloud based automatic back up system.  For a low annual fee all of your important files will be automatically backed up to a secure data center in the cloud.  If you change a document, it will be backed up.  If you create a new document, it will be backed up.  Never again will you have to worry about losing your files.

The online backup solution that we recommend is called Carbonite.  It is very easy to get running.  For more information or to purchase Carbonite backup, please visit our partner page.

Clean Up Files

Cleaning up unnecessary files is the number one way to gain additional storage space on a typical device. It’s cost-effective without any extra hardware purchases too.

Almost all computers have files hanging around from old software, data or applications they no longer need. Just like tidying the spare room or de-cluttering the kitchen, clearing files off your desktop and organizing your emails will leave your computer feeling refreshed and new again.

Restart Your Computer

Fully shutting down a computer and rebooting can take time. When you are watching the clock, waiting to start a task or get work done, it can feel like an eternity. Most of us enjoy simply opening the lid or powering on the screen to have everything ready to run.

At times, a computer may not be fully restarted in weeks or even months. Our poor habits can cause issues with running software and the operating system too. Hardware updates, security patches, and critical updates often wait for a reboot before they install. Waiting too long can leave security flaws open and the system vulnerable to attack.

Merely performing a reboot every once in a while can secure your system and help get rid of software problems. Often updates prevent new issues from cropping up too.

Keep Your Computer Away from Dust

Dust, hair, and household debris are one of the major causes of premature death for computers. Fans, used to cool components, suck in house dust as well as the air they need. This dust often clogs up the inside of the device and overheats internal components.

If possible, keep a tower PC off the carpet, don’t run your laptop sitting on the floor, blanket, or soft furnishings. Cleaning out your device is as good a resolution as any, and there’s never a better time than now.

For a little help sticking to your digital new year resolutions and starting off on the right foot, give us a call today at 630-444-7220.

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What’s Best for Your Computer: Shut Down or Sleep?

January 7, 2019

Most homes are trying to reduce power costs by turning off lights and appliances, but do the same rules apply to computers? After all, it requires more than flicking a switch on your way out the door. Some people believe you should shut down after every use to save wear and tear, others believe you […]

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How to Stay Safe from Scams and Malware on Facebook

November 30, 2018

How to Stay Safe from Scams and Malware on Facebook At last count, Facebook has grown to over 2.2 billion users, which makes the platform more attractive than ever for scammers and hackers. While you may be logging in to share your latest family photos or catch up with friends, the chances of accidentally triggering […]

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Happy Thanksgiving

November 21, 2018

The opportunity to serve customers like you gives us joy and thankfulness every day of the year. We would like to wish you a peaceful Thanksgiving holiday and the time to truly enjoy it with your friends and family.  Computer-Repair-Now.Com   

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How to deal with spooky email messages

October 25, 2018

It is almost Halloween and most of us have grown accustomed to gruesome home decorations or being scared at your local haunted house.  How would you feel though if you received an email message containing your password threatening to contact all of your business and personal contacts through social media with your “dirty secrets”?  Spam and […]

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We still do computer hardware repair

July 3, 2018

In today’s disposable society it is becoming increasingly difficult to find local companies which still perform “on premise” component level hardware repair of desktops, laptops and all in one computers.  If you take your system into one of the “geeks” at a big box store they won’t be able to fix it there.  They always […]

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How to Make Your Photos Last A Lifetime (and Beyond)

August 11, 2017

Digital cameras are great, and thanks to smartphones, we have one with us almost all the time. We’re taking more photos than ever before, and building a lifetime of digital data. But despite the enormous value of these photos and videos, most people don’t have a backup. It’s time to shine a light on this […]

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Everything you need to know about Facebook privacy

July 31, 2017

    In this issue, we talk about how to lock down your privacy settings on Facebook. Finding the balance between Facebook privacy and Facebook fun can be challenging. It’s a double-edged sword that allows us to connect with friends no matter where they live, but it also publicly shares information that just a few […]

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