General Maintenance you Should Complete to Maintain your Dell Computer

General Maintenance you Should Complete to Maintain your Dell Computer

General Maintenance Guidelines for your Computer

Like any device that contains moving parts, most computers require some general maintenance to help make them perform to their optimum capability. Depending on the environment where the system is placed, periodic cleaning may be required to prevent system failure due to overheating.

It is recommended that systems be kept in a clean area free of dust, fur and other contaminants that can obstruct the ventilation of the computer. Heat is always the biggest threat to the system, and most computer have cooling systems (active or passive) to dissipate heat to protect the system components. The central processing unit (CPU) and the graphics processing unit (GPU) are the 2 components that generate the most heat. Other devices that generate heat are the power supply unit (PSU) and hard disk drives (HDD). (Figure 1 & 2)

Figure 1

Figure 2

It is recommended to use the computer in a location with temperatures between 0°C to 35°C (32°F to 95°F) with a Humidity level no greater than 40%.

You should periodically inspect your system and clean it as needed based on the ambient conditions of the location.

Systems used in a dusty factory may need cleaning every few weeks, where systems in a clean dust free environment may only need an annual check.

Using portable system on a blanket, pillow, or other type of cloth may cover the fan grills blocking the airflow that cools the system. This can lead to overheating and could cause permanent damage. (Figure 3)

Figure 3

We recommend using the Laptop computer on a hard, flat, non-cloth surface which will help increase the airflow and reduce heat from underneath and inside the system.

Maintenance Tasks

Clean the system as needed. There are some indicators that a system may need cleaning.

Some of the tools you may need to clean you system

When ready to clean the system, it should be powered off and unplugged. If you are cleaning a portable system then also remove system battery. Once all power sources are removed, press and hold the power button for 15 seconds (this will discharge any stored power in capacitors built in the system reducing the chance of static electricity damaging system components

Caution: Vacuuming causes static and can cause damage to delicate system components.

While wearing an anti-static strap, on desktop/Tower systems, remove the cover/side access panel to access the internal components. If there is a removable shroud for the CPU heat sink, remove it, if not then use the canned compressed air to clean out any accumulated dust in the heat sinks of the CPU GPU and the PSU. Then clean the fans, with gentle puffs of compressed air.

Caution: Do not rev the fans at high speeds as this may damage the bearings and cause a fan failure.

Portable systems, may have a bottom cover that can be removed by the user (See the system manual onDell Support). Removing the bottom cover allows easier access to the heat sinks. Again, using short puffs of air clean the air vents and the CPU/GPU heat sinks of any dirt, dust or debris.

As systems are produced, there is a constant process of re-evaluation and improvement. In computers one of the ways that system performance is improved is by updating the BIOS micro code. These updates make changes to the system performance based on customer feedback and engineering evaluations to improve performance. Check Dell Support for the latest BIOS release and update the system when new versions are available.

Article ID: SLN290711

Last Date Modified: 10/18/2018 06:55 AM

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