Hello, I have a peculiar problem with my computer. I have a computer comprising of a Pentium D with 512 MB memory and 160 GB hard drive. The problem has just started since a week or so. I use my computer occasionally. When I switch it on in the morning or after two or four days, the system refuses to start. I restart the computers power too, but in vain. But I noticed one day when the computer refused to start, I was frustrated and left the computer powered on accidentally and went out for an hour. When I returned back, I found that the computer was still powered on, but there was no display. I powered off and restarted the computer to check again and the computer came on and did not give me any problem. But later after a few days the computer went on the blink again. I tried the same thing (keeping the computer powered on for an hour and restarting it again) it works fine. I contacted a few engineer friends who said that it’s a problem of humidity in the rainy season and that it’s quite common. Please help me fix this problem permanently as it gets really difficult at times when I urgently need to use the computer. Please help!

– Ronald D'Costa

Hi Ronald. Your engineer friends are right. In the monsoons, humidity levels rise. If your computer is dusty, the dust gets quite damp and this can cause some problems. Try keeping your computer away from the window. Also note that if you have air conditioning in your room and you open a window or door after your room has cooled down considerably, there is condensation on the monitor and other parts of the computer's components. Avoid starting the computer when this happens.

To keep the dampness at bay

To keep the dampness at bay

Keep your computer clean at all times. Blow away dust from within your computer's cabinet using a good blower (Note: make sure you do not touch any component inside the chassis while doing so. Do it at your own risk). Clean the  PSU, CPU cooler, add-on cards and memory sticks as these cards are horizontally positioned and dust settles on them quickly.

Apart from keeping your computer case clean, use two to four packets of ‘Silica Gel’ available at a chemist. Stick the packets (do not open the packets) or just keep them inside the chassis. Silica gel has the capability to absorb moisture. As the gel reaches the end of its life – as in it cannot absorb any more moisture – the packets change color to a pinkish tinge. When this happens replace the gel with a new pack. 

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