The old adage “out with the old and in with the new” may not apply to your current computer. As a general rule of thumb, systems tend to slow down after two to three years. But, that doesn’t mean that your desktop or laptop is headed for the junkyard heap. What it does mean is that you have a choice. You can either buy a new system or simply upgrade the one that you have. How do you decide? Consider whether or not your system will faster or better if you upgrade. If not, it’s time to look for something new.
What Can Be Improved
There are certain aspects of a computer that can be improved. You can add additional memory, increase hard drive space, or add a better graphics card. What doesn’t make sense is spending a large amount of money on any one of these things. If, for example, the cost of buying additional memory is more than two times the cost of your system, this might not be a good investment. It’s also a good idea to consider whether or not an upgrade will actually fix the problem that you are currently dealing with.
If your computer is overheating regularly, doesn’t boot, or can’t hold a charge, you might want to consider tossing it. On the replacement front, keep in mind that it’s not too difficult to add onto most systems, so don’t be scared away by the thought of adding something additional.
Things That Are Hard to Replace
Unless you have an easy-open desktop with a standard tower, you might have a really tough time trying to figure out how to crack open your laptop. It is possible to replace almost anything on a desktop, so I’ll skip right to laptop difficulties. One thing that’s very hard to replace on a laptop is the motherboard. Simply opening up your laptop in order to find the motherboard and then replace it is really hard. Another aspect of a laptop that might not be replaceable is the processor. Again, a processor is really tough to reach.
A word of warning: make sure to backup anything on your system before you decide to go nuts with a screwdriver. Also, keep in mind that there’s a possibility you may not be able to successfully open your laptop and put it together again. Or, you might dent a section or two. But, for the most part, a laptop is an easy thing to pry open. Just make sure that the part you are trying to replace is actually replaceable.
When To Toss
Sometimes, the junk heap is the only place for that old system. You can strip it down and try to sell it for parts. Or, you could donate it to charity if it still runs reasonably well. If your system has just had it though, no amount of updating will do. In this case, it pays to start shopping around for a new system. Make sure to check out some reviews here before you do! Weigh the toss versus upgrade options, and then decide which course of action is best for you.