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Geek Guru Blog

Tech Tips – Protecting your Tech from Heat Damage (Part 2)


Summer in the UK is getting slowly warmer on average, as the earth does.

However rugged your devices might seem, it’s usually wise to take steps to protect them against heat damage.

This is particularly relevant in the summer when the ambient temperature is potentially much higher, especially during heatwaves.



Dust and Dirt

Dust and dirt can clog ports, fans, and ventilation grilles – it’s important to keep these areas as clean and debris-free as possible, however clean your environment seems. Dust can be damaging to sensitive electronics too, which is why electronics manufacturers have “clean zones” – areas where the air is filtered, that have climate control, and require protective clothing to be worn. This is all to stop the damage that can be caused by dust.

Of course, manufacturers expect everyday usage to entail contact with some dust and dirt, but it is advisable to keep your devices away from environments where this may cause an issue – sand, for instance, can also scratch and damage smart devices like phones and tablets, as well as causing heat issues and clogging ports.

Operating PCs and smart devices in dusty or dirty environments will drastically shorten their lifespan.

Cleaning fan grilles, vents and ports regularly can help to prevent overheating and heat damage due to dust and dirt. If you believe your device may have accumulated dust, dirt or any other debris internally, as is the case for many devices with fans, the best course of action is to take your device to a reputable servicing provider or computer repair specialist. They will be able to clean and maintain your device in a way that shouldn’t damage the delicate electronics inside.

Cleaning out dust and dirt yourself can be tricky – if you’re an experienced user you may be able to clean your devices yourself using compressed air (making sure NOT to use the can upside-down!) Never blow into a dusty port as the moisture from your breath can cause damage to the internal electronics. Using a vacuum cleaner to clean the ports is also not advisable because of the air friction it can generate.

The best option is to use a soft, dry, lint-free cloth to clean surfaces and vents. If you are inexperienced with opening and cleaning devices, more advanced and intricate cleaning is a job best left to the professionals.


Give your Device some Space!

Make sure the device has enough clearance from the wall or other surface to allow for sufficient airflow.

Blocking the air intake vents with other household items such as books or clothes, with soft furnishings, or with other devices or furniture can cause your devices to overheat and potentially cause damage in the long term.

Cables should also be kept tidy and organised, to prevent them getting the way, restricting airflow to your devices.


Safety First

A small reminder, also, that while most devices have a safety cut-out that will shut them down before they become dangerous, some devices may also malfunction and can explode or cause fires – this is particularly relevant when the device is meant to be left plugged in.

The best advice here is to switch off any unnecessary devices when they’re not in use.

If you’re in any doubt as to whether your tech has been heat damaged or is overheating, consult your IT advisor or a specialist! If you suspect a device you’re using is overheating, switch it off as soon as possible and unplug it, then wait for it to cool down.


Want to upgrade your systems? Need help with advice on hardware or software? We can help! Give us a call on 0121 312 1500 or email us at info@geek-guru.co.uk
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