Here are some best practices for taking care of your work-issued equipment, whether you're at work or at home. The purpose of these tips is to help prolong the lifetime of your hardware and ensure that you can work with as few technical interruptions as possible.
Give Your Machine a Good Night's Sleep
Computers are not so different from living things in that they, too, need a rest sometimes. Restarting your computer at the end of every work day will ensure it can refresh itself, take time to install any pending Windows updates, and be ready for you the following work day.
Avoid tripping hazards by placing your computer equipment cables/wires away from walkways and any other areas where it may accidentally be pulled, tugged, or bumped accidentally. The cables themselves can be damaged, from the wires within to their connectors where they plug into devices. The ports on the devices that they plug into can also be damaged.
For ethernet cables, it's important to squeeze the latch on the connector before pulling it out to avoid damaging your hardware.
When unplugging any cable, it's important to pull straight out from the connector/plug rather than the wire/cable. Do not jiggle plugs to pull them out.
Signs of a swollen laptop battery
If you notice any of these signs, please contact the Help Desk immediately.
- Trackpad and/or keyboard seem to be rising or protruding abnormally.
- Laptop seems to wobble when set on a flat surface.
- A gap appears between the top and bottom of the laptop body.
- Something seems off/distorted about your laptop body.
- Any sign of smoke or burning smell.
How to avoid a swollen battery
Sometimes you just can't avoid a swollen battery (old age may cause the issue), but here are some tips that can help:
- Avoid working in a humid area, as moisture can lead to a laptop battery swelling.
- Keep it cool - avoid sudden changes in temperature, especially drastic heat changes such as leaving it in a hot car. If it is hot, wait for it to cool down before using it again (do not try to speed-cool it by putting it in a fridge or anything like that).
- Keep it on a flat, hard, clean surface. This is to help the fan cool the machine properly, to avoid internal dust/grime build-up. Avoid placing the machine on cloth or soft surfaces.
- Use the charger that came with your computer.
- Always charge your battery before it runs out of juice (and try not to wait until the very last minute!).