Easy Fixes For 5 Frustrating Common Computer Problems

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A computer repair technician fixing a computer. Repair technicians help with common computer problems and advanced repairs.

With how much we rely on computers these days, there’s a serious amount of stress involved when something goes wrong with your device. And though most of us are well-versed in working with a computer, not too many know how to work on a computer. 

Fortunately, many computer problems can be solved at home — or prevented entirely if you know what you’re doing. Here are 5 common computer problems that you can fix at home.

1. An application isn’t responding

This is an inevitable and extremely common computer problem, so no need to panic.

If an app on your computer is completely frozen, so much so that you can’t even close it by pressing the red “x” button, here’s what you need to do:

  • On Windows, press Ctrl + Alt + Delete. This will open a new screen, where you’ll click Task Manager. In Task Manager, find the application you want to close, click it, and then click End Task. The frozen app should close immediately, at which point you can restart it. 
  • On Mac, click the Apple icon in the Menu bar at the top left of the screen, then click Force Quit. In the pop-up that appears, select the app that you want to close and click Force Quit. Again, the frozen app should close immediately, at which point you can restart it. 

And that’s it!

2. I spilled water on my laptop

If you’re reading this on a device that you’ve spilled water on, turn off your device now and continue reading on another device.

This is one of the most common problems that laptop owners run into. Fortunately, it’s perfectly fixable with a quick reaction and the right know-how. 

First things first, you need to disconnect your device from all power. This is what causes your device to be damaged — the water and electricity fry your laptop’s internals. If you can cut all power going to your device before the water hits anything electric, then all you have to do is wait for your device to dry. 

After you’ve turned your computer off, turn it upside down, disconnect any connected cables, remove the battery if you can, place your laptop in a dry room (like a closet), and use a hairdryer or small fan to circulate the air around your laptop. Leave it like this for at least 24 hours — 48 if you can. Once that’s done, you can open your laptop and dry the inside by hand or take it to a repair shop to have it looked at before turning it back on. 

3. My computer won’t turn on

Another frustrating and common issue is a computer that just won’t turn on. Several things could be causing this, many of which you can address at home. 

  • Make sure it’s plugged in. It’s a simple solution, but make sure that your desktop or laptop is connected to power. If that doesn’t work, try other wall sockets to make sure that’s not the problem. 
  • Check that your display is functional. It could also be that your computer is turned on, but the monitor isn’t working. If you have a spare monitor or an HDMI cable that you can use to connect your computer to your TV, you can check this issue that way. 
  • Disconnect all peripherals and restart your computer. Peripherals include monitors, keyboards, mouses, webcams — everything. 

If none of these solutions work, then you can safely assume the problem is above your pay grade and that it’s time to contact tech support

4. My internet is slow

The internet powers almost everything in 2020. So dealing with slow internet is no joke. Luckily, if the issue is on your end, it’s probably an easy fix. Here are a couple of solutions you can try at home:

  • Restart your WiFi router. This is the box that gives your home WiFi. To restart it, just unplug it for at least 60 seconds before plugging it back in.
  • Restart your device. Unless you’re noticing slow internet on multiple devices, you might need to restart your smartphone or computer to get it running at full speed again. 
  • Check your internet usage. It could also be that you have one device using more internet than you realize. Try turning this device off and see if your speed improves.

If none of these solutions work, then it’s likely time to call your internet provider. First, check your internet speed with a speed test. This will give you a number to give to the customer service representative you get in touch with.

5. The Blue Screen of Death

The Blue Screen of Death, or BSOD, is something that most Windows users have heard of — and maybe even experienced. The BSOD occurs when your device runs into some sort of error that causes the entire system to crash. This pulls up a blue screen, hence the name.

This might sound intimidating — like a point of no return! — but even BSOD shouldn’t mark the end of your computer’s life. In fact, more often than not your computer will restart and be up and running again in just a few minutes. 

Still, blue screens are a serious issue and usually indicate that something is wrong with your device’s hardware. After you get a BSOD, open the Action Center in Windows 10. Here you’ll see if Windows can resolve the issue on its own or find an error code that you can Google for more info. 

If Windows can’t resolve the issue and the error code you see isn’t something you know how to fix, then it’s time to visit a repair shop. 

Got more computer problems to solve?

A surprising amount of technical issues can be handled at home. But, like fixing anything, this requires a bit of confidence and know-how. And there are always going to be problems you can’t solve on your computer — most of which will be hardware related. 

When these issues arise, it’s important to reach out to a trusted repair shop like ScreenWorks. Whether it’s a computer, phone, or tablet, we have the expertise to resolve your issue quickly and reliably. 

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