In this era of growing data, external hard drives are coming in handy for individual and organization uses. Whether it is your images with family and friends, your favorite movie or music, or your business documents, there is always something important to store every day. The need to quickly store and access essential information is making more essential in today’s hectic world.

The USB 3.0 external hard drives are more stylish, faster and more durable than the external drives from a few years ago. They are also cheaper and more spacious. However, choosing the ideal external hard drive is not as easy as buying the most expensive or the most spacious you can afford. Factors such as capacity, type of storage mechanism, ruggedness, physical size, and how the drive connects to your PC or laptop are some of the factors that you must consider when selecting an external hard drive.

Another essential element you must consider when buying external hard drives is durability. Unfortunately, hard drives do not last forever but the lifespan of external hard drives vary among different brands. The average lifespan of hard drives is usually six years but some die early due to manufacturer fault or improper handling by the user. You can prolong the lifespan of your USB 3.0 external hard drive by taking good care of it and by preventing the most common causes of hard drive failure.

Causes of major hard drive failures and how to prevent them

Physical damage

External hard drives are highly fragile. They have several moving parts that can easily malfunction with the slightest disturbance. A simple knock while the drive is spinning can cause a hard drive failure and thus, you must take good care of your drive. To prevent physical damage, you should not remove the drives from their cases once installed. You should also not shake, jostle, or move your drive case while it is on. You should also keep your drives in a location where they will likely experience no or minimum accidental kicks.

Excessive heat

All hard drives work optimally within a specific range of temperatures. Temperatures that are too high or too low will negatively affect the lifespan of your drive and thus, you should always ensure that your drive is always in the safe range. The challenge of maintaining the safe range is usually with drives that are installed internally as the temperatures inside the computer or laptop are usually higher than the temperature of your room. To ensure the longevity of your drives, you should make sure that the fans are properly working and the case of your PC or laptop is clean.


In addition to the excessive heat and physical damage, turning your hard drives on and off frequently increase the wear and tear of the regular use. The most demanding task for a hard drive is booting up and shutting down and thus, you should minimize turning on and off your drive as much as possible.