With the advanced technology in the modern world, innovative ideas and inventions that make life easier are released every day. Thus, mobile gadgets and computers have become a necessity. Research shows that in the United States approximately 70% of households have a computer. However, the higher the number of computers, the higher the demand for computer and related devices repair services.
Nothing is annoying than a slow computer or one that will not run. Other than obstructing your work, adding up pressure on your schedule and hampering your productivity, computer problems can be expensive. Although there are online and offline computer repair technicians who will offer their services at a price, you can try to resolve the issue on your own.
Performing regular maintenance on your machine ensures optimal functionality and long life. It includes protecting your computer against viruses and upgrading the operating system and software. However, if it is beyond your repair capabilities seek help from a specialised computer repair services.
How To Choose Computer Repair Services
There are many computer repair service providers, but it can be an uphill task to find one that offers high-quality services. Therefore, you can consider the following factors to select the best computer repair services.
1. Outline the basics
Common problems with computer systems include system failure, corrupt data, virus attacks and accidental deletion of files. Therefore, always back up your data for protection against unexpected events. Also, identify a computer repair service who can offer help at short notice.
2. Company’s reliability
It can be daunting to find a reputable computer repair company that gives values for your money and one that you can reach anytime you encounter a computer problem. First, be open-minded; don’t just choose the first company you come across, look around for more. Ask questions such as the experience, if their technicians are certified or not, and whether the firm is registered in your area. Also, look at the company’s website to check clients’ reviews and testimonials. This will give you a clear idea whether you can rely on the company or not.
3. Remote/On-site repair services
Always opt for a service provider who offers on-site and remote computer repair services. Remote services mean that the technician can log into your computer system with internet to fix the problem. However, the services are only applicable to software problems. On the other hand, it can be challenging to carry a broken computer if it is heavy and big or if you need repair services for more than one computer. However, companies that offer such services can charge additional costs.
A computer repair company should provide a wide range of tech services and solutions for all types of computer problems. They should also repair both Mac and PC systems while delivering mail-in service repair. This means you can send a mail to the company with all your repair needs. The mail option is convenient, less stressful and cheaper.
5. Turnaround time
It is almost impossible for most of us to work without a computer or a laptop. So, consider the period your computer will be in the repair workshop. Sometimes it depends on the complexity of your repair needs. Also, if you are working with a big computer repair firm, it means they have many clients. Thus, the turn around time will be longer. You can choose a smaller computer repair company, which can offer the same services in a short period.
6. Area of expertise/Services offered
What service do you need? Is it hardware or software related, minor or complete installation? Some companies are specialised in repairing a particular type of computer. Also, some are willing to offer inspection at no fee while others will charge for the same. So, it is essential to know the make and brand of your computer, but it’s in your best interest to find a company that can offer all types of computer repairs.
Always find a company that is well-established in the area. Their track record should show the quality of services they offer. Do not hire a company that has been out of business for months.
8. Multiple technicians
The number of technicians should be equivalent to the number of clients that come in. If the number is too small, the services may be untimely. Always ensure that there is an available staff to help you with your needs.
Computer Repair Costs
|In Store Flat Fee PC Repair||$150
|Laptop Hardware Repair||$30
|PC Hardware Upgrades||$20
|On Site Service||$30
|Expired Anti-Virus Removal and Replacement||$30
|Cut in Line Service||$40
|New PC Recommendation and Cleanup||$50
|Wireless Network Installation and Configuration||$150
|Operating System Re-Installation||$100
In-store flat fee PC repair
It involves Adware, diagnostics, spyware, PC tune-up and virus and Trojan removal. Choose a repair service that will remove all malware without formatting your computer.
Testing and evaluating hardware provides a diagnosis of the condition of your computer, cost-benefit analysis and estimated life expectancy.
It involves replacing the hard drive, RAM, and keyboard. However, you can be charged an extra cost for purchasing the hardware.
It includes replacing the video card, sound card, RAM, power supplies and hard drive.
As programs become more complicated every day, you want to ensure that your applications are accurately installed and configured.
There are times when you have no access to your computer, but you need to use it. Mostly, the laptop will be wireless with an anti-virus, Microsoft Windows XP, and Microsoft Office. You are granted the rights of an administrator to install other applications that you need, and your information is not stored on the laptop. Upon return, the service providers will delete all that you saved or installed. The total cost of rental depends on the age, type and condition of the machine.
As we explained earlier, the computer repair company will send a technician to your location to fix your computer issues. If the problem is complex, the technician can take the computer with him to the lab for diagnosis and tests.
Removal and replacement of expired anti-virus
So your anti-virus no longer works but keeps on asking for payments. The service provider will replace the old anti-virus with a new one that will last longer.
Cut-in line service
This service allows you to jump everyone in the queue and become the first.
This service helps you recover all your data including documents, music, pictures, etc., even if your computer cannot boot.
New computer recommendation and cleanup
Your computer repair company should be in a position to find a new computer that fits your budget and all your needs. The technicians will order one for you and remove any trial antivirus, trial-ware applications and Crud-ware that the vendor could have installed on the computer.
Installation and configuration of wireless network
The service provider will install and configure up to two devices in your wireless network. You are charged an additional fee for configuration of other devices.
A slow computer does not necessarily mean your computer has a virus or conflicted registry, but there could be many programs running at the same time, which needs to be stopped. This service also includes disk check, disk defragmentation and removing temporary files. They can run a stress test, which determines the lifespan of your computer.
If your computer is infected with Trojan, worm, virus, adware or other types of malware, the computer technician can remove them without losing your data or formatting your machine.
Re-installation of the operating system:
If you cannot access your computer’s recovery disks, computer repairer can install the OS and all drivers and backup all your data before the reinstallation process.
Finding the Best Computer Repair Company Near You
Just like any electronic device, computer owners should understand that their machines are prone to different types of damage. Inexperienced computer technicians can make the damage even worse, for instance, format the memory. Therefore, it is important to take your machine to the best company or shop offering the proper repair services. What are the tips for finding the best computer repair company?
Professional and qualified staff
The repair company should have certified, knowledgeable, and skilled technicians. Hence, make sure that you “feel” the expertise of the staff. For example, you can engage them in a conversation and ask them about training and previous cases.
The best way to find the best computer repair service is to get referrals from family, friends, and co-workers. If more than one person had a great experience with a particular service provider, chances are, you will also experience the same. Also, search the company online and check testimonials and reviews before you make a final decision.
Big adverts do not necessarily mean the best
A flier, web advertisement or a full-page ad in the newspaper are not referrals. Advertisements only give you information about the value of a particular company and are always biased. However, you only know what they say or hear about the company.
Some are honest and there might be a particular computer repair company, which is said to be the best in town, but you cannot ascertain that from adverts.
Conduct a research
Some computer repair service companies do not entirely depend on their repair service. Most of them have a small retail business in the main business premises while national chain services are attached to big retail outlets. Visit the workshop, browse on the internet and pay attention to the clients who are bringing or picking their computers. Do they look satisfied? Observe as many clients as you can as well as the technicians- do they seem professional, helpful and knowledgeable? If they don’t, find the services elsewhere.
If you are a busy person, you must consider flexibility. Make sure the service provider provides on-site repair, and pick-up and delivery. This will ensure convenience on your part.
10 Questions to Ask Your Computer Repair Service Provider
We’ve all experienced computer break down, which you must get it fixed as soon as possible. For an average person, computer is as confusing as car repair. You need both the computer and car in your everyday life, but you don’t have to understand the internal functionalities. Unfortunately, this means you need a trained and professional to fix and maintain the inner parts.
As a client, you will be spoilt for choice since there are many computer repair service providers in the market to choose from. The industry is also flooded with fake or inexperienced technicians who will take advantage of your lack of knowledge in the field. Thus, you end up with a bad experience and trust issues.
The following is an informative and simple guide with essential questions you should ask when choosing the best computer technician. It also provides the kind of answers you should expect.
1. What’s your specialty?
Both Apple and Microsoft offer various certifications. For instance, Apple offers ACSP (Apple Certified Support Professional) and ACTC (Apple Certified Technical Coordinator). CompTIA provides Linux certification while Linux Institute offers LPI certification. Other than OS, some technicians are trained and equipped in dealing with particular brands, even if they are Windows’ computers.
For instance, a computer technician may have dealt with Dell computers for many years, but that is only a description of the computer problem. You may hear him or her tell you that the motherboard’s capacitor is broken. With years of experience, the technician must have learnt how to fix different computer problems.
2. Are you registered with Board of Electronic and Appliance Repair (BEAR)?
Always make sure that the computer repair service provider is legally certified. When setting up a business on the basis of a professional market, then you must be registered and working with a legal license. If the technician is honest about his or her work, he or she will not hesitate to show you the certificates.
3. How much do you charge?
Since now you know the training and experience of your computer technician, you can ask about the costs. Although it is a tough topic in the field, most clients take advantage of the technicians. For instance, family members expect free repair while others expect to pay a fixed fee for repair, but expect lifetime tech support.
On the other hand, there are unscrupulous repair technicians who will take advantage of clients who have zero understanding of computers. They can charge at an hourly rate even for jobs such as System Recovery, which takes up to 15 minutes.
Different people have different opinions regarding this. Some feel that an hourly rate is fair while others think a flat fee is great. Any computer problem has symptoms that can give a hint on the main cause. For an experienced technician, it takes less than an hour to figure it out. Therefore, you can tell your technician if he or she troubleshoots the computer for more than an hour, they should get back to you to tell you if it will cost more money. The cost of the services mainly depends on local demand and location.
4. How is my data protected?
Data back up is the first thing that every technician should do before attempting any repairs. This process will get your machine back to the status it was in the last time you used it. It includes:
- Backing up crucial documents such as financial records, family photos to an external hard drive or USB stick.
- Setting up a restore area with the available tools in the operating system.
- Copying folders such as documents, internet bookmarks and history and personal setting into a hard drive or USB stick.
5. Are there warranties?
If you choose a repairer whose business is small, he or she will hardly give you a warranty for their services. If you work with a technician authorised by the manufacturer, he or she can send the computer to the manufacturer. If the machine is under warranty, there are no service charges and vice versa. Most companies will not offer a warranty for screen repair and virus removal but it is usually set for hardware virus removal or hardware installation.
6. When will you complete the repair?
Like most of us, we use our computers for work and leisure. Whether the work is being done on-site or off-site, you need to know when the repair will be complete. If the repair was simple such as removing a virus, the turn around would likely be hours or few days. If the issue is complex, it can take a week or more.
7. Do you offer remote repair?
Remote repair allows the technician to log into your computer and repair it. However, this solves software issues only, which is a convenient method since you don’t have to transport your desktop computer.
8. How do you track changes?
Professional techs understand that documentation is essential. The company should have a system in place that tracks and records all the changes they make on your machine. Before you take your computer for repair, ask the repairer how the plan to track alterations. Tracking gives you a record of the changes made and informs you on the repair process.
9. Follow up and support
What will happen if a problem occurs after fixing the computer? Will you offer extended support? A job is not always finished after it is completed. If anything happens after the technician has fixed the computer, you must ensure you are covered.
10. Do you provide free consultations?
This is crucial for businesses that are looking for computer repair services. You don’t have to waste money on consultations if you will not use the service. There are repair service providers who will offer free cost estimates based on your computer problem. If he or she does not agree to your request, seek the services elsewhere.