How to Install a New Hard Drive for Laptop

Level of difficulty: Intermediate

Installing a new hard drive in your laptop is relatively easy and it can save you money on technician fees. However, a laptop is much more delicate than a Desktop PC, so if you do not have a steady hand and a bit of experience in tinkering with computers, it is best that you leave it to professional hands.

Materials Needed:
- Screwdriver
- backup software (optional)
- backup CDs or DVDs (optional)
- laptop hard drive
Step 1
The first step in installing a new hard drive in your laptop is choosing the right drive. A typical laptop hard drive available nowadays follow the 2.5-inch-wide hard drive format and perform at an rpm ranging from 4,200 to 7,200.It is best to check your laptop’s instruction manual for hard drive specifications first since having the wrong hard drive in your laptop could lead to malfunctions and irreparable damage to your device.
Step 2
After you have bought a new laptop drive, you should now perform backups of the important files in your old hard drive. This is so that in case anything happens, you will still have your old files. You can back up files using a special backup program or by burning the files onto CDs and DVDs, or transferring them onto a portable storage device. There are also online storage services available on the Web that will store your files for a fee while you install your new hard drive.
Step 3
Turn off the laptop and remove its battery. This is to prevent electrocution or causing any untoward damage to the inner components of the laptop.
Step 4
Turn the laptop upside down and look for signs and indications of a drive release mechanism or a removable panel. Laptop hard drives are generally located at the bottom or the side of the laptop and is removed either by pressing on a lock/unlock button or by unscrewing it directly. If you are not sure on how the drive is removed from your laptop, refer to the laptop manual or ask for professional help.
Step 5
With the old drive removed, install the new hard drive in reverse of the manner the old drive was detached. If the laptop has a slide-in drive mechanism, the drive should slide in smoothly and create a clicking sound once the connectors engage. If the hard drive sits at the bottom of the laptop, you will have to insert one edge first for it to fit perfectly.
Step 6
After the hard drive has been installed, turn on the laptop. The BIOS should automatically detect the new drive.