Laptop care tips

Laptops are indispensable devices for work and study. Despite their widespread use, we sometimes unknowingly expose our laptops to unnecessary wear and tear through careless habits. Follow these key care tips to ensure your device lasts longer and performs optimally. 

Maximise battery life  

Optimise the power consumption of your Windows laptop by implementing a few strategic tips

Activate battery saver mode and adjust the power settings. This feature adjusts settings such as screen brightness and processor performance to reduce power consumption. Further optimise battery life by adjusting the power and sleep mode options in your system settings. 

Switch off WiFi and Bluetooth when you are not using the device, as they can drain the battery through background processes.

Disconnect or switch off external devices such as USB drives and peripherals when they are not needed to help conserve your laptop's battery.

Close unnecessary applications and web browsers. It is advisable to monitor your laptop's battery status using built-in utilities or third-party software. 

Maintain a clean working environment 

The environment where you use your laptop has a significant impact on its performance and longevity.

  • Keep drinks and food away from your device to avoid spillages, which can irreparably damage the internal components. Even a small splash can render your laptop unusable.
  • Smoking near computers can also cause damage. Tar from the smoke combines with dust and forms a sticky residue that blocks the vents and insulates the components, affecting performance.
  • Avoid placing heavy materials on your laptop as this can harm the screen and keyboard, potentially causing keys to malfunction.
  • Ensure your laptop is placed securely on stable surfaces and take precautions to prevent it from being knocked over or dropped. 

Handle with care

Treat your laptop with care to ensure its longevity and to prevent damage, especially to the screen.

  • Before closing the laptop, always check for objects that could damage the screen, such as pens or headphones.
  • Apply even pressure when closing the laptop to avoid bending or damaging the hinges.
  • Consider investing in a protective laptop case, bag, or sleeve for safe transport to minimise the risk of accidental drops or bumps. 

Clean regularly and optimise ventilation 

Cleaning your laptop regularly prevents dust and dirt from building up, which can clog the ventilation and cause overheating.

  • Use a soft, lint-free cloth and compressed air to wipe down the exterior and vents. This simple step will protect your device's internal cooling system and ensure its longevity.
  • Avoid overheating by keeping your laptop well-ventilated.
  • Do not place your device on soft surfaces such as beds or pillows, which can obstruct airflow. Use a laptop stand or cooling pad instead to elevate your device, improve air circulation and prevent overheating.  

Update software, browsers, and operating system 

All computers are vulnerable to attacks from hackers and malware, which is why developers regularly release patches and updates. These updates typically include security improvements that aim to protect your system from vulnerabilities and enhance its overall performance.

  • Install a reliable anti-virus software. Trellix comes pre-installed on UCT-owned laptops. As a UCT staff member and student, you may also install Trellix on a personal computer via the ICTS Downloads page. Remember to keep your anti-virus software updated with the latest virus definitions to stay ahead of new security risks.  
  • Install operating system updates as soon as they become available. UCT provides an automatic update service for Windows, Apple, and Linux machines. Once you subscribe to the applicable service you will automatically receive critical security patches and software updates that will ensure that you have the latest security features and bug fixes to optimise the performance and security of your laptop.
  • Update all software, including your web browser and applications regularly to address vulnerabilities, improve performance, and safeguard against security threats.