What Parts of My Laptop Can I Upgrade?


If you have a laptop that you have had for some time now and simply can’t afford to replace at the moment, you might be looking to upgrade components to make it faster or more in keeping with today’s software. Sometimes we have numerous files that would be a royal pain copying and moving to another laptop and other times there is software installed that would be impossible, for one reason or another, to move to a new system. Would you like to upgrade your laptop computer? Here are the parts of your laptop that can ‘usually’ be upgraded.

RAM – Random Access Memory

When running an older laptop, chances are you will be able to upgrade memory yourself simply by opening up the housing, pulling the current memory out and physically installing a new card/chip. However, there are other steps to take as well, but that is a simple description of what you can do. Unfortunately, many of the newer machines have memory soldered onto the motherboard, which means you’d need a tech to upgrade it, but even then, maybe your laptop can’t handle more memory.

It depends on the circuitry and what the manufacturer established as upper ends. Check out sites like Offtek in the UK to see if a) there is compatible memory, and b) whether the memory that is compatible needs to be professionally installed.

Hard Drives

Actually, the hardest part about installing a bigger hard drive is in figuring out how to get your computer housing opened up! It takes tiny, little elf hands and some of the smallest screwdrivers on the market. Also, work in light environments so you can see what you are doing and beyond that, make sure you use a rubber static-reducing mat under your feet and at the very least, wear rubber-soled shoes. Nothing will kill the inner workings of your laptop quicker than static electricity! So, no matter what component you are adding or changing out, make sure to guard against static. It’s more than an annoying little spark that startles you from time to time. Static electricity is an electronic technician’s worst enemy – a real nightmare!

Optical Drives (CD/DVD Drives)

It should go without saying that the only way you will be able to upgrade your optical drive is if you have a slot for one. Many of the newer laptops have extra SD slots as opposed to CD and DVD drives, so there would be no place to install an internal one unless you bought new housing. Obviously, this isn’t usually an option, so you’d need to use an external optical drive that you would hook up via a USP port, of which you probably have at least three.

There are other components on a laptop that you could upgrade as well, including a wireless card and/or bluetooth. In any case, the upgrades which are most common are memory, hard drives and optical drives. Sometimes, the manufacturer already installed top-of-the-line components and there is no upgrade available. If your laptop can be upgraded, the above are the most common upgrades laypeople can do for themselves – or with a little help from your friends. (Thank you, Ringo! Timeless advice.)