How to Add a New Part to Your Computer - dummies

By Andy Rathbone

Part of Upgrading & Fixing Computers Do-It-Yourself For Dummies Cheat Sheet

You can often upgrade your computer so that it will last longer or do a new trick simply by adding or replacing a single part. Whatever part you want to add, follow these steps to insert it safely inside your computer case:

  1. Copy any important information on your hard drive to a safe place for safekeeping. (To be really safe, back up the entire hard drive.)

  2. Read any instructions that came with your new part.

  3. Exit any running programs, turn off your computer, and unplug it from the wall.

  4. Clean off the desk or table space next to your computer.

  5. Put your tools next to the computer.

  6. Remove your PC’s cover.

  7. Touch an unpainted part of the computer’s case to discharge any static electricity that may have built up. This keeps static electricity from damaging your computer’s sensitive internal parts. (If you work in a particularly static-prone environment, buy a wrist strap or grounding mat from your computer store to help discharge static.)

  8. Remove the old part and insert the new part.

  9. Plug in the computer, turn it on, and carefully test the new part to see whether it works.

  10. Turn off the computer, unplug it, and put the case back together.

  11. Plug in the computer and put away your tools.