Hurricanes cause billions of dollars in damage each year, including damage to computers. Unfortunately, computers can be much harder to replace if lost than other electronics because of the data contained on their hard drives and time spent tweaking and overclocking them.
How to Protect Your Computer during a Hurricane
Being a Katrina evacuee and survivor myself, I know how important a computer can be after a natural disaster.
Although I preach about backing up in many of the articles I write, I am going to say it again. Be sure you have a full backup of your system! Before a storm approaches, backup your PC on an external media and store that media in a safe location that is preferably off site. A bank safe deposit box would be a great place to start. In case you experience major structural damage, you will still have a copy of all your valuable information.
Summing it up, if you have a hurricane or tropical system heading your way, some simple common sense tips can really go a long way. Also remember that early preparation is imperative. Once a storm is coming, your local stores may be fresh out of the supplies you need most.
While you’re busy searching the Web, remember that computers must be readied for severe weather, too. The first priority is to back up important files by saving them to a flashdrive, disk or online data storage. Files that change regularly should be backed up regularly. Extremely important back-ups should be stored at a separate location.
Minimal computer protection against storm damage is a surge protector. No device can stand up to the force of a lightning strike, but a surge protector can guard against damage from power surges, especially following outages. If possible, unplug electronic devices during a storm to avoid damage from lightning. Surge protectors need to be replaced periodically. Like bicycle helmets, if they take a big hit, their integrity is compromised.
Before a storm approaches, consider purchasing a long-life battery for laptop use during an extended power outage. While normal laptop batteries provide one to three hours of life, extended life batteries power for four to five hours or more (depending on type of use. In the event of a long-term outage, the battery would need to be recharged by generator or through a car AC adapter.
So make good use of the Internet as you watch and prepare for a storm. Prepare your computer by backing up files, using surge protectors and having ample battery power in case of a long term outage.
And lastly, be thankful for a quiet hurricane season.