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We are continuing to offer our data recovery services during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As part of our commitment to limiting the spread of the virus, we encourage you to ship your media directly to our lab instead of visiting a drop-off location.

Warning Signs of Hard Drive Failure

Symptoms of Hard Drive Failure

Hard drive damage can occur without any prior symptoms, but in most cases, hard disks exhibit one or more warning signs before failing entirely. Because HDD failures often result in data loss, computer users should know the most common warning signs associated with common problems like read/write head failures, damaged controller boards and spindle bearing seizures.

Warning Signs of Hard Drive Failure

Always take unusual noises seriously and turn off your hard drive as soon as possible to avoid media damage.

Failure symptoms vary depending on a hard drive's brand, model and operating system. Because all hard drives will eventually break down due to mechanical wear, you should back up your important files regularly to avoid data loss.

Some of the most common HDD failure symptoms include:

  • Clicking, Whirring or Whining Noises
  • Overheating
  • Excessively Slow File Access Times
  • Missing or Corrupted Files and Folders
  • Boot or Mount Issues
  • Crashes or Blue Screen Errors (BSOD)

Secure Data Recovery Services offers repair and data recovery for hard drives, solid-state drives, RAID arrays and other devices. We provide free diagnostics and price quotes for failing hard drives through an expansive network of more than two dozen offices. Contact us today to schedule a no-risk media evaluation.

Steps to Take When a Hard Drive is Failing

If you can still access data on a failing hard drive, you may be able to transfer small files to another storage device. However, you should not transfer large files or put excessive strain on the drive, as this can accelerate a serious physical failure. For the best possible chances of a complete data recovery, you should shut down your hard drive as soon as possible. Do not attempt to boot the drive after shutting it down and never use data recovery software to treat physical media issues.

When a hard drive displays warning signs of a physical failure, it needs fast treatment at a qualified data recovery laboratory. Secure Data Recovery Services offers high recovery rates for all hard drives, and we can often use specialized utilities and tools to safely clone failing drives without risking media damage. However, our recovery process varies from case to case.

To treat damaged hard disk drives, data recovery engineers need access to a certified Cleanroom. Failing hard disks often require read/write head replacements and other physical repairs, and a certified Cleanroom provides a safe environment for these repairs by removing potentially dangerous airborne contaminants.