When your hard drive fails, here’s what you should do.

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What to do when your HDD fails

Because it is where everything is stored, your hard drive is one of the most critical parts of your computer or laptop. Because your hard drive houses all of your programmes, applications, information, and images, anything going wrong with it can be quite stressful and unpleasant.

Almost everyone has had a hard disc issue at some point in their lives, so don’t worry – there’s still a lot you can do if your hard drive dies. But first, let’s look at some of the most common causes and the telltale indications to look for.

What causes hard drive errors

A hard disc failure remedy is frequently as straightforward as determining what caused the issue in the first place. There are two types of hard drives: HDD (hard disc drive) and SSD (solid state drive) (solid-state drive). There are a few frequent causes of hard disc errors that you may encounter, regardless of whatever type you have:

  • Electronic – this could be from a surge or fluctuation in power, and is one of the more common things to happen.
  • Excessive heat – if your computer is left in the sun or used for longer periods of time without a break, it can overheat, causing damage to the hard drive.
  • Water damage – yes, if you spill liquid on your keyboard and it gets into your computer, it can damage the delicate electronics inside.
  • Faults in hardware – something may not be working correctly in the mechanics of your hard drive (sometimes known as a ‘manufacturers fault’), yet this doesn’t happen frequently.
  • Corrupted files – likely one of the biggest causes of hard drive errors, corrupted files can happen when you don’t shut down your computer correctly or pull out a USB stick before it has been properly ejected.


What to be aware of

There are a few warning indicators to check for if you feel something is amiss with your hard disc. You might simply notice a little symptom or something more visible, such as an error message, but when your computer begins to act differently, that’s usually the first sign that anything requires your attention.

Computer slowing down

If your computer becomes noticeably slower than usual, there could be a problem with your hard disc. This can manifest itself as longer loading times when you click on files, or it can take your computer longer to boot up or shut down.

Missing Hard Drive

If you can’t see your computer’s hard drive in File Explorer (PC) or Finder (Mac), it’s likely that something is wrong. Similarly, if the hard disc is visible but you can’t click on it or view any of the files or programmes on it, it’s possible that some files are corrupted.


Pay close attention to the sounds your computer makes when it starts up. If you hear anything unusual, like grinding or clicking, it’s a sure sign that the hard drive is having some trouble working as normal.

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How to fix a Hard Drive

The most important thing to remember is to maintain your composure. Parts may be replaced and computers can be repaired. Before calling in the professionals for a hard disc failure repair, there are a few actions you may take at home to attempt and diagnose the problem.

Read the error message closely

First and foremost, if an error notice appears on your screen, what does it say? When your hard drive is nearly full, it can cause your computer to slow down, so consider emptying away your downloads folder and shutting any applications you aren’t using to free up some space.

Run a disk check up

Run a disc checkup if possible. This will differ depending on whether you’re using a PC or an Apple Mac, but you can use software to scan your hard drive for anything that isn’t operating or isn’t in the appropriate place.

Switch it OFF!

Computers are durable but still prone to errors from time to time, so if there’s nothing obvious you can spot, turn your computer off. If you try and backup your data or perform other maintenance tasks, it may just make the problem worse. Then, take it to a qualified professional computer repair centre to help diagnose and repair the unknown issue.

Give the Geeks That Know Tech A Call!
No matter what the issue is, our Geeks have the know-how to diagnose what’s going on and explain it to you in a way you’ll understand.