Computer Repair or Replacement – Cheap Computers are Not a Bargain

In the PC Repair business these days, we are hearing more people say they can buy a computer for almost the same price as repairing their existing PC.  So why bother doing the repair?  An good repair shop will tell you if your computer is worth fixing or not.  If they value your continued business, they will be honest with you.

Some people like replacing their computer every year or two, so they they keep buying cheap, low end machines.  Problem is, their user experience will be awful.  Slow performance, crashing, lockups, bad battery life and lousy WiFi reception are some of the hallmarks of cheap PC’s.  Then they have to transfer over all their data, install all their programs, and redo all their personal settings.  Hey if you like this, knock yourself out.

Yes, computers have dropped a lot in price these days.  You can buy one for $300.  However, as the old saying goes, you get what you pay for. [Read more…]

Laptop Repair Issue: Deciding on New or Used Parts

If you need parts for a broken laptop repair, an important choice to make is, should you get new or used/refurbished parts?  Here’s my thoughts and policy that I use in my repair business.

I’m talking about major components here, like motherboards and LCD screens.  Other minor parts are no big deal, as they’re not expensive.  For these major parts, the difference in cost between new and used/refurbished can be as high as $100 for LCD’s and $150 for motherboards.

If your laptop is over 3 years old, you’re better off with used or refurbished parts, unless it’s a high-end model (e.g. if it was over $1000 new).  If your laptop was a basic model with only a year or two of life left in it, you want to keep your repair cost low.

If your baby is a high-end beauty that still runs fast and is pretty up to date, you want to stick with new parts, as they are more reliable and will give your laptop longer life.  You want a good machine to last a while, since you spent a lot to buy it in the first place.

For newer laptops (less than 2 years old), you want to stick with new parts.  You want your machine to last 4 or 5 years, so you want the longer life and reliability of a new part.  Of course, if your laptop was a budget unit you bought for $299, it’s probably not worth doing a major repair.

What other considerations are there in choosing new versus used, or even in doing the repair it at all?  This is a cost/benefit decision.  If the cost of the repair (including labor) is half the cost or less of buying a new unit, you should definitely repair it.  If you can do this with new parts, go for it!

Most of these major repairs cost $300-$500 using new parts, or $200-$350 with used parts.  A good, solid mid-range laptop these days goes for $600-$800.  So you can see it’s a close decision.  If you bring your laptop to us, we’ll advise you on what’s best to do.

If you need help with this type of issue, or any other computer repair issue, our contact information is on our website at Saguaro PC Tech – Tucson Computer & Laptop Repair.

Laptop Repair: Finding a Good Repair Shop is Not Easy

Computer Laptop RepairWhile general laptop repair, like virus removal and software issues (Windows problems, etc.) are the same as for desktop computers, repairing laptop internal hardware components is a very difficult and specialized area.  Therefore, finding a good laptop repair shop is not so easy.

Why is this?  There are two reasons:

  1. Internal repairs require extreme precision and skill.  Soldering and electrical testing are also often required.
  2. Parts are very specific to each model, sometimes even varying among different revisions of the same model laptop.

Therefore a repair shop must have technicians with the appropriate skills.  Plus, the owner of the shop must have the knowledge and patience to deal with the often frustrating process of finding and ordering the correct parts for the job.  I personally went through hell learning this and often wondered if it was even worth bothering with laptop repairs. [Read more…]