Hard Drive Is Failing
Photo by Vincent Botta on Unsplash

A Hard disk, also known as HDD is an electro-mechanical data storage device that stores and retrieves digital data using magnetic storage and one or more rigid rapidly rotating platters coated with magnetic material. It’s an important part of your laptop or computer that helps store your important data. And if something goes wrong with HDD there are chances you might lose your important data. Here are some symptoms of hard disk failure, or Your Hard Drive Is Failing and how to fix disk drive problems.

Hard disk failure reasons?

It could be a Power outage, Firmware corruption, Hardware failure or Human error are some common reasons behind Hard disk failure.

Symptoms of hard disk failure

In most cases, hard drives will begin to fail gradually. This means you still get enough time to copy or transfer your data to another drive before it just dies from a fatal failure. But how do you tell when the drive begins to fail? Let’s show you some of the symptoms of hard disk failure.

Computer not responding, freezes or frequent blue screen error

When observed in your P.C., the three signs indicate that the hard drive has started to fail. There can be so many other causes of computer slowing down, frequent freezes, or even blue screen of death. However, hard drive failure is, in most cases, a significant culprit.

Bluescreen error


If your computer experiences these issues, the best thing to do is to run system S.M.A.R.T. – Self-Monitoring, Analysis, and Reporting Technology data.

Remember, while Windows automatically collects the S.M.A.R.T. information in the background, it is unreliable in predicting the hard drive failure. Therefore, your computer system may quickly experience a critical malfunction before the S.M.A.R.T. warning kicks in.

For more effective monitoring of the S.M.A.R.T. status of your computer hard drive, we recommend using third-party software. Install the software, such as the Disk Drill by CleverFiles, run it and choose to scan your disk’s health status.

Strange sounds

When strange sounds begin to play from your hard drive, know that you are in big trouble. Repetitive sounds, usually referred to as “clicks of death,” result from the head trying to write data, failing in the process, returning to its home position, and trying again repeatedly.

If you hear screeching or grinding noises, they majorly indicate that some parts of the hardware, such as the spindle motor, have begun to fail.

This is a very critical sign that your hard drives will soon crash. The step to take is to copy or transfer your data immediately to another drive. But if you can’t do that, it will be regrettable.

A rising number of bad sectors

A bad sector in a disk storage unit is one with permanent damage. All the information on bad sectors of a hard drive is automatically lost. But how do you identify bad sectors in a hard drive? You will know this when the disk ticks or the computer runs very slowly when you open some files.


If you realize your hard drive has so many bad sectors, you can partition the drive to save your data or transfer your files to another hard drive. This way, your documents will be much safer even if the drive crashes or just fails completely.

Windows have a build in disk check utility called CHKDSK that can help you recover data from bad sectors and exclude them from future use

  • Open command prompt as administrator,
  • Type command chkdsk /r c: (for your C: drive) and press enter key,
  • Enter Y when queried, and CHKDSK will run once you restart your computer.

check disk for errors windows 10

Missing files

Sometimes you begin to lose files mysteriously from your hard drive. If you realize that some files are failing to open or are suddenly getting corrupted even though you saved them correctly, you should be warned that your hard drive has started to fail.


As much as you can use software for dead hard drive to recover missing files, when you realize the drive is beginning to fail, you can partition it and monitor how the partitions perform or move your documents to a safe place.

Taking too long to access files and folders

This is yet another sign that your hard drive is failing already. When experiencing this effect, you will wait strangely long to access folders and files.

access files and folders


As a sign of failing drive, you should take it as a warning sign to start hard drive recovery. Move your files to a safe place and change your hard drive.


Generally, the average lifetime of a hard drive that is not in use is between five to ten years. This can, however, significantly reduce if you expose the drive to changing humidity, temperatures, and external shocks such as drops and vibrations.

If you use a computer or laptop for your daily activities, you understand how vital a healthy hard drive can be to your business. Your laptop hard drive will generally begin to fail after serving for three to five years. This is equally true for S.S.D.s. A bad hard drive or one that experiences some difficulties will therefore misbehave and will not serve you perfectly.

Consequently, you may begin to experience data errors or even data loss during your routine activities. Sometimes, the hard drive will die and leave you stranded and with nowhere to turn to. Of course, you can get back some files using data recovery tools. But can you successfully perform a dead hard drive recovery? Follow the link to find out more.

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Steve Ballmer
With over 7 years of experience in the IT industry, I have experience in IT support, helpdesk, sysadmin, network admin, and cloud computing. Certified in Microsoft Technologies (MCTS and MCSA) and also Cisco Certified Professional in Routing and Switching.


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