My laptop episode and what I learnt from it

We all know how laptops form an integral part of our student life, be it for work or for entertainment purposes. Although university libraries do offer laptop loans and a considerable number of desktops for students’ use, it is still way easier to own a laptop so that you can use it regardless of place and time.

So when I found out my laptop wouldn’t boot up on my first night at Sheffield, I was devastated. (Did it not survive the 16 hours flight?!)

But I will skip the specific details and suggest a series of steps that you can follow in order to get your laptop fixed (but let’s hope that will never happen).

  1. Student Equipment Support Service by CiCS

First of all, it’s free, and much less of a hassle than contacting your product company and asking for an engineer to come to take a closer look. All you have to do is to bring your laptop (and your UCard) to the Information Desk in the IC and the staff will know what to do next.

But do note that this is not a sure-fire method in getting your laptop fixed. If you are encountering a software problem (e.g. virus or trouble installing certain softwares), you are pretty much settled. However, for hardware problems such as those concerning the battery (or the motherboard in my case), they won’t be able to carry out extensive repair for you. Nevertheless it is worth to give it a try. At the very least the staff will be able to diagnose the problem for you.

2. Is your product still under warranty?

If yes, just contact your laptop company and provide them the relevant information so that they can get your product fixed. Yay!

3. Repairing an out-of-warranty product

If not, fret not. Most laptop companies offer out-of- warranty services too. Private repair companies are also a viable option when you know where to look.

But before proceeding any further do consider multiple factors such as the repairing cost, reputation and reliability of the company. Cost tend to be cheaper when done by private companies. Reputation wise it is safer to utilise your social network, browsing what previous users have to say about a certain company and the services they offer. Remember, just because you find a bad apple doesn’t mean you need to give up the whole tree. In other words, don’t generalise a single review and form an impression of a company based on one single review. Time to utilise the critical thinking that we had learned from the uni!

As for my case, I ended up buying a new laptop. Motherboard replacement is expensive and with the price repair companies quote me I figured it would be best to purchase a new one, albeit the newer one is essentially a downgrade of my current one. This might not be the best solution, but it is the best I can think of after weighing multiple factors.

Lastly, to avoid all these unnecessary trouble, it is best to take good care of your devices from the start. A little effort made daily will go a long way.




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