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Are Power Outages Bad for Your Computer?

A power outage can do devastating damage to your computer if it is not protected properly. The reason for the damage is usually not the fact that the computer does not receive any power during an outage, but rather the suddenness of the power outage and the potential power surges associated with it. A scheduled power outage for line maintenance, for instance, does not pose any risk to your computer if you shut it down before the outage.

Causes
Power outages can happen for several reasons, including obstruction or damage to power lines due to weather-related conditions such as heavy snow, lightning storms, or ice. A power surge occurs as soon as the flow of electricity gets disrupted and started again. This places electrical pressure on the wires in your computer, causing them to heat up and burn. Some wires may melt, and even if your computer survives the surge, the strain alone can cause damage in the long run.

Surges
The first component in your computer that gets hit by the surge is usually the power supply. High-end power supplies are designed to withstand power surges and protect the other components against voltages and currents that are higher than normal. Such a power supply also shuts down automatically during a power outage, and when the power comes back on, it delays startup for a couple of seconds to ensure that the power normalizes first. Aftermarket power supplies, however, don't always have all of these features, leaving your PC vulnerable. If the power supply fails, an over-current can fry the chips on other components such as your motherboard and CPU.

System Crashes
The circuit and chips inside the PC are very sensitive. If these components don't receive a steady, clean 120-V AC current, they won't perform optimally. If the power is shut down suddenly, it can cause a system crash in your PC. Your operating system, as well as other software that was running during the crash, may be damaged. If you don't manage to do a system repair, you might have to reinstall your operating system. Power fluctuations can corrupt or even erase the data on your hard drive, and even physically damage your hard drive -- if the power outage happens while the drive is busy writing to the disk, the hard drive's head can crash and damage the platter.

Protection
Do not rely on your power supply as the only surge protection for your computers. The simplest and often safest option is to use a UPS. It prevents system crashes and also provides power for a limited time to give you a chance to shut down the computer correctly during a power outage. Note that although there are UPS systems that can last for an hour or longer, this is not advised as your computer may overheat.

Contact us today if you are interested in having a UPS either by our hotline at 62955962 or email us at info@achievement.com.sg.

Original Article: https://smallbusiness.chron.com/power-outages-bad-computer-67242.html

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