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How To Make Your PC Last Longer – From A PC Expert

How To Make Your PC Last Longer – From A PC Expert

We invest a lot of money and time into our PCs. Pre-built computers are especially expensive nowadays, but even building your own won’t be cheap.

With all of the time and money we put into our computers, we want them to last as long as possible. Technically, a PC can last forever if you keep swapping out the parts, but if you swap out every part, is it even the same PC? That’s a question for Plato.

What we want to know is how to make our PCs last as long as possible, with replacing as few parts as possible. So, how can we achieve this goal?

How To Make Your PC Last Longer?

Here are the top ways to keep your PC healthy and boost its longevity:

Keep It Clean (Air Dust)

Air dust your PC every two months, or even every month if you want to be really diligent. Dust gets into our PCs overtime, it’s practically unavoidable. It’s important to make sure that the dust doesn’t build up too much.

There are a few reasons for this, but the main one is to prevent overheating. If all of our components have dust all over them, they’re going to be much hotter than they should be.

In the worst case scenario, this dust could even cause a static shock and ruin your computer components.

Make Sure It’s Cool

Monitor the temperatures of your CPU, GPU, hard drives, etc. There’s software that you can get that will do this for you, and your computer may even have some built in.

You don’t need to monitor your temps 24/7, but occasionally when you’re in the middle of a gaming session or something similar, just take a peek at your temperatures and make sure they’re all safe.

You will want to google the safety range of your components to figure out what’s safe and what’s too high.

Use A Surge Protector

Power surges might be rare, but if it happens to you, you’ll wish you were using a surge protector. They’re not very expensive and can save you thousands of dollars and a lot of time if you’re unlucky enough to experience a surge.

I won’t lie, I’ve went a long time without one, but the worry was always in the back of my head and I feel a lot better now that I have a surge protector.

Invest In A Good Power Supply (PSU)

Your power supply needs to have a high enough voltage to power every component in your computer.

It’s better to have too much power in your PSU than not enough. If your PSU doesn’t have enough power, then it may lead to a crash or something worse.

On top of this, you want a quality PSU, because if your PSU sends the wrong type of electricity or voltage through your components, it could lead to something shorting out and being permanently damaged.

The PSU is the unsung hero of computers, so make sure to invest in a proper one.

Keep It Off Of The Carpet

Airflow is one of the most important factors in the longevity of a computer. People say to keep your computer tower off of the floor, but what they really mean is keep it off of the carpet.

First of all, carpets can be pretty dirty, and your PC is going to suck up that dirt extremely fast, which isn’t good for it.

On top of that, the carpet will block airflow much more than a hardwood floor that leaves gaps under the PC would. This can lead to overheating.

Again, I’ll be honest. My current setup has my PC on my carpet, but I really wish it wasn’t and will be picking up a wooden box or something similar to set it on.

Repaste The CPU Occasionally

Re applying the thermal paste on your CPU’s heat sink every 5 or so years may help lower temperatures, and more importantly prevent them from rising. It’s not exactly necessary, as thermal paste lasts a very long time, but it’s one of those better safe than sorry things.

You don’t want to repaste your CPU too often, so every 3 – 5 years is perfect. If your CPU is getting a little hot and you’re not sure why, the first thing to check is the thermal paste.

You’ll want to wipe off the old paste, and put just a pea sized dot on the top of the CPU. Once you put your heat sink back on, the paste will naturally spread out evenly.

Replace Broken Parts (Mostly Fans)

If one of your fans are broke, you need to replace it ASAP. You can tell if it’s broke if it stops spinning, or you see physical damage on the fan itself.

If a fan suddenly gets super loud, this is also a bad sign. Fans keep our PCs cool, which makes them extremely important as they prevent overheating. You do not want to run your PC with a broken fan.

I bought a used PC that would crash randomly, with the hopes of fixing it. I replaced the power supply, the hard drives, the RAM, everything and it would still crash.

Then, I took a look at the CPU fan / heat sink and guess what? It was damaged, and this meant the CPU wasn’t getting cooled down enough, which meant that it would overheat and emergency shut down.

Keep Drinks Away From It

This may seem a bit obvious, but sometimes when you don’t have a lot of desk space accidents can happen.

It’s good practice to set your drinks on the side of the desk away from your tower. This is especially true if your tower is on the floor, and your desk is right above it.

I learned this lesson the hard way when I spilled a cup of water, and a little tiny drop leaked off of the desk, into the vent holes on top of my PC case.

I had a heart attack, but everything was fine and a lesson was learned.

Be Careful On The Internet

Don’t download anything from non-official sites, double check that the sites you’re on are official, avoid giant green download buttons, and always do your research on a company, phone number, etc.

We’ve covered pretty much everything you can do to keep your PC in good physical shape, so let’s talk a bit about its health.

The internet can have a lot of sketchy stuff, and many people fall for scams and end up with viruses. No matter how tech saavy you are, it’s possible to fall for a trick and end up with a virus.

I’ve gotten a virus in the past, and it was very scary.

Luckily, the one I got wasn’t very serious and I was able to get rid of it ASAP, but some of them can be extremely nasty.

Use An Antivirus

Finally, use an antivirus. No matter how safe you are, something can always slip through the cracks, and you’d rather have it and not need it than need it and not have it.

There are many free options that work just as well (if not better) than some paid ones. I personally use malware bytes (click to see on Amazon) and Windows Defender (built into Windows).

I’ll run scans anytime something fishy happens, and generally just try to stay safe on the internet.

Can A PC Last 10 Years?

A PC can easily last 10+ years with proper care. Take measures to prevent overheating and electrical surges that may damage the components, and there’s no reason a computer needs to die within a decade. A 10 year old computer just won’t be able to run modern programs or workloads as well as a new one.

Most PCs will last well over 10 years. They’ll at least be able to boot up and you’ll be able to take a look around and run their programs. However, a 10 year old computer will probably be obsolete.

This means you won’t want to use a 10 year old computer for modern work loads. Even things like internet browsers may run slowly on a 10 year old computer.

With that being said, if you keep a computer clean and healthy, it’ll last 10 years easily.

Now, if you built your own computer, you can have the best of both worlds. You can replace any part that becomes obsolete over time without replacing the entire PC itself.

This means that after 10 years, not only will you have a working computer, you’ll still have a functional one as well.

Can A PC Last 20 Years?

Yes a PC can last 20 years before it breaks down or stops working. However, a 20 year old computer will not be able to run any modern software or games. If the 20 year old PC is used constantly everyday over those 20 years, it is also more likely to break down. A PC will be obsolete long before 20 years.

Some people still use their PCs from around 2001. I actually have a couple family members running on computers like this.

The only caveat is that they don’t use their computer very often, and they don’t use it for anything besides checking their email every now and then.

It’s also important to keep the computers clean from dust, and use precautions like a surge protector and decent power supply.

So, a PC can technically last 20 years, but after about 10 years, it’s not going to be able to do a lot. The good news is that it’ll still be able to run any games and software that you put on it 10 years ago.

For some people, this is all they’ll need, so they’ll get as many years as they want out of their PC. For a lot of people though, they’ll need their computer to run modern software and games, so they’ll need to upgrade after about 10 years.

If you’re not afraid to get your hands dirty, and learn how the inside of your PC works, then you can make your computer last almost indefinitely.

Of course, you’ll need to replace parts if they break down or become obsolete.

Eventually you’ll have replaced every part in your PC and have a Ship of Theseus situation on your hands. But it will still be cheaper than buying a brand new PC every 5 – 10 years.

How To Know When Your Computer Is Going Bad?

If your computer becomes extremely slow, is making very loud noises, or randomly crashes very often, then it is probably going bad. Often times, older computers will start to overheat due to dust build up and general breakdown, which will affect many components inside the PC leading many blatant issues.

The good news here is that computers don’t generally lie to you about how they’re feeling. If your PC is making a lot of noise, then something is definitely wrong.

Either the hard drive is starting to go bad, or one of the fans are damaged. Either way, it’s not a good sign and you should start backing up data.

A quick air dust of your PC is a good idea at this point, and may solve the noise issue, but if not you’re going to want to prepare for the worst.

Other than the noise, poor performance is a good sign that something isn’t right with your PC. If it used to run fast but suddenly starts running poorly, something has happened.

This could be a number of things from a bad hard drive to everything overheating.

Again, a quick air dust might help, but if your PC is running super slow or randomly crashing, it’s probably too late. Again, I would start backing up all of your important data onto an external hard drive.

What Brand Of PC Lasts The longest?

Apple / Mac computers last the longest and are the most reliable computers on the market today. They are very durable, reliable, and not nearly as prone to viruses and failures as other computers. They are also very intuitively designed. If you do not want a Mac, Lenovo and Dell are two fantastic brands.

Apple brand computers are the highest quality computers, which is why they’re also so expensive. If you buy a Mac, it’s going to last a long, long time.

The only “downside” to Apple computers is that they run on their own operating system and not on Windows. Now, this is only a downside if you really want or need a Windows computer.

If you do really want a Windows computer, then Lenovo and Dell are the best options out there. Generally speaking, these companies make great home computers with quality components.

However, they are also more vulnerable to viruses than Macs, and do not hold their resale value as well.

👋 Hey There, I'm Eric!

Since 2018, I've been making streams come true.

I like gaming, streaming and watching other people stream. I created this website to help streamers and viewers of streams answer some of the questions they may have regarding live streaming. I am a Twitch affiliate and currently stream on Twitch 3 days a week. I hope you find my content helpful. Feel free to stop by one of my streams to say hi.