Questions To Ask A Computer Repair Tech

In the repair industry there are some technicians out there that will do anything to raise the price for supposedly fixing your computer. Beware of scam technicians – instead – save yourself some time and misery by asking just a few questions ahead of time.

Do you just remove infections or fix the problems they cause?

This question is important is because anyone can download a program and attempt to remove infections. But to just remove an infection is not enough. The computer itself has been infected by the virus or trojan which means many files may be damaged or still replicating the infection. It is important that whatever computer shop you take your computer to for virus removal also cleans up after the virus.

Will I lose any personal files?

No one wants to lose their personal files – but some technicians won’t tell you that this will happen with some repairs that they do. Most of the time files can be backed up prior to any work done on a computer and can be replaced back on to the machine. There are a few instances when this cannot happen, which may be out of your tech’s control. But just asking this question can help keep your data safe.

Are they registered with BEAR (Board of Electronic and Appliance Repair)?

This is for California only – however, each state has their own certification program, so check with your state to confirm this is in place. This type of program monitors each business to make sure they are legitimate businesses. A good shop will have this certificate on display and will readily show it to their requesting customers.

Ask if NORTON or McAfee are good antivirus programs for the home user…

If the repair technician answers with a resounding yes, pack your machine up and head for the hills. Norton and McAfee make excellent corporate anti-virus programs, but there are tons of other virus programs (most for free) that are available for downloading that are much more effective and detailed compared to the residential versions. Keep in mind – no antivirus program is perfect. Most infections come in by the user allowing a program to download something onto their computer and giving them permission. Things such as free toolbars and other items can often be cloaked devices to send and receive your activity. Always read the fine print before downloading anything and check with a search provider like Google before completely downloading it to see if it is a scam.

Is there a warranty with your service?

The majority of the time, the answer will be no. Simply because you cannot warrant virus removals as soon as the computer is connected to the internet and the user interfaces with possible infectious attacks. The few times that there are warranties, it will be with hardware and not virus removals.

Will you notify me before you do anything to my PC that will cost more than the original estimate you gave me?

Some bad shops will try to do as much as possible to a computer without advising the customer and ending up handing the consumer a big bill they didn’t expect. A responsible repair center will give you an estimate, and once your machine requires more work than the estimate provided, they will contact you for your permission to do further work. Sometimes a problem that was unseen at the time of the estimate can arise once the estimated problem is fixed. This is a normal thing, however, beware of a computer shop that doesn’t communicate with you about the fixing of something extra without your permission.

As with all businesses, some repairs can be costly and can require more work than originally estimated because some issues cannot be seen until a part is repaired or replaced. For example: A screen could be cracked which needs to be replaced. The screen gets replaced but then it is found out that the chipset is not working. This is no fault of the tech that originally gave you an estimate and you are still responsible for the original laptop screen replacement costs- but if the business doesn’t call you and ask your permission to fix the chipset before doing so – then they are probably not someone you should deal with.