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Power problems on your PC can include a failing power supply, a faulty AC adapter, a bad power cord - or something as simple as forgetting to turn the machine on.
Signs of a failing computer power supply include a computer that locks up or fails on startup, rebooting at unexpected moments, overheating, or a hard drive that won't spin. And a faulty computer power supply or power port can be a serious problem - but before you panic, let's try ruling out some easy power supply fixes.
Chief causes of PC power failure include equipment failure, an accident involving the computer or - in rare instances - even a direct hit by lightning. Many power system issues also result from brownouts or power surges - or are the result of static buildup from activities as simple as vacuuming a carpet.
Is your PC power supply affected?
For tips on preventing power supply problems during an electric storm, see our page on how to Prevent Lightning Damage
If you suspect your pc power supply has been damaged or you are experiencing computer power problems in Olympia, give us a call. (We also solve computer power problems in Lacey and computer power problems in Tumwater too!)
We will arrange to look at your computer and give you an estimate to repair.
We take care of your power supply problem, Olympia.
We can fix your power supply problem, Tumwater.
We are ready with help for your power supply problem Lacey.
Do you have a power supply problem, Shelton? We are on it!
Computers and modems contain electronic components easily damaged by sudden changes in power, static electricity or lightning strikes. Just turning off your computer is not enough to protect against damage to computers, especially during an electrical storm, but we do have some tips that can help to protect your computer system.
First - Turn off and unplug everything
Unplug during a power outage too. When the power comes back on the rapidly changing power levels can damage a power supply.
Power spikes, power surges and brownouts spell trouble for computers. Here in the Pacific Northwest, wet or icy winter weather brings us power outages from downed trees or wet limbs drooping into power lines. Summer problems often involve brownouts from overloaded systems. And outages from downed power poles or blown transformers can happen any time of year. Any power outage can result in power surges and spikes when the power is restored.
And it is not always weather to blame for a computer power problem. Even something as innocent sounding as disconnecting your printer cable from the computer while the computer is running can create a power spike that will damage your system.
Some signs of power surge computer damage or damage from power surge or brownouts show up immediately. These can include:
• Computer acting strange - computer won't start - or computer turns on but nothing on screen
• No Signal or a message that Signal not found
• Surge protectors and inline fuses are "blown"
• UPS/backup batteries alarm.
In other cases, you may not see damage from a power outage right away. That damaged video card or CD-ROM failure may not show up for weeks or even months after a major outage. But our technicians know what to look for, so if your computer is giving you problems, give us a call.
Static electricity is a very real problem in many homes and businesses even here in the northwest. Simply walking across the carpet in a room with low humidity can generate up to 35,000 volts of static charge and do major damage to an unprotected computer. Vacuuming too close to a computer can also generate sufficient static electricity to damage your machine.
Computers should never be placed directly on carpeting - if you must have the computer on the floor, consider placing a six inch wooden box between the carpet and the computer.
At your desk, place a plastic mat between the carpet and your chair to eliminate much of the static charge from moving across the carpet.
The only sure fire protection against a power surge is simple - pull the plug. But we all know you can't always be there to unplug your computer and any attached monitors, printers or other devices every time the wind blows. So what else can you do?
First - install a surge suppressor. Surge suppressors are handy little devices designed to protect all kinds of equipment from sudden changes in current – brownouts, blackouts, surges and spikes. You may want one for each computer as well as for other items like expensive televisions or even refrigerators and freezers.
Installing a surge protector between your computer power cable and the wall outlet even provides some protection from electrical storm damage that might occur when you are not around to unplug your system. Also consider using a surge protector to protect your system from surges through network cables. Some high end surge protectors allow you to feed all power and data through the surge protector to protect on both the power and data signal side.
Look for the surge protector that is rated for your particular application but be aware that no surge protector is a 100% guarantee. For example, some surge protections offer lightening strike protection but nothing is going to fully protect your computer against a direct lightening hit to a nearby power line.
There is a downside to surge protectors. Some DSL modems and surge protectors seem to not play well together. A DSL modem plugged into a surge protector may periodically lose the DSL signal. This is a nuisance – but can save you considerable expense repairing damage to a computer hit by a power surge.
During a power outage, an Uninterruptible Power Supply (USP) installed between your surge suppressor and the power supply can keep your equipment running just long enough to allow your computer to shut down safely without data loss.
The UPS also provides your computer with a steady supply of "clean" power, eliminating the highs and lows of a regular power supply. By allowing your computer to sip power just the way it wants, a UPS can help to extend effective life of all computer power supply components.
Uninterruptible Power Supplies are sized for the need you have in your system - call on us for an evaluation of your system and recommendations for the size that will work best for you.
Note: we do not recommend using a UPS for long term "working in the dark" or keeping your system going during a power failure.
For most applications, we will recommend against plugging a large monitor into the UPS and we caution that you should NEVER plug your laser printer into your UPS. These heavy demand devices will quickly run down and wear out your UPS, leaving you unprotected.
209 Washington St NE, Olympia, Washington 98501, United States
Call anytime - Monday to Sunday 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Drop off hours Weekdays 8 to 5:00; Weekends by appointment
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209 Washington St NE, Olympia WA 98501 360 995-1010
Olympia Computer proudly provides computer repair, computer consulting and IT support in these zip codes.
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