how to repair external hard drive after it was dropped


How can one prevent their external hard drive from getting damaged in case of accidental drops?

How to Repair External Hard Drive After It Was Dropped

Dropping an external hard drive can be a worrisome experience for anyone who relies on it to store important files, photos, and documents. The impact of the fall can cause damage to the hard disk inside and make it difficult or impossible to access essential data. However, if you act quickly and follow some simple steps, you may be able to repair the external hard drive and restore the lost data. Here’s how to do it.

Step 1: Examine the External Hard Drive

The first step is to examine the external hard drive to see if there is any visible damage. Look for cracks, dents, or scratches on the casing or any loose parts. If you see any signs of damage, stop and take the hard drive to a professional for repair. Attempting to fix it yourself can cause further damage and may void the warranty, if it has one.

Step 2: Try Connecting the External Hard Drive to Another Computer

Plug the external hard drive into another computer and see if it works. If it does, copy all the important files and documents from it before attempting any repairs. If you cannot access the data, try using a different USB port, cable, and power source. Sometimes a faulty cable or port can be the problem.

Step 3: Check for Disk Errors

If the external hard drive does not work on another computer, you may need to check for disk errors. Here is how to do it:

  1. Connect the external hard drive to your computer
  2. Click on Start -> Computer -> Right-click on the external hard drive -> Properties
  3. Click on the Tools tab -> Check Now under Error Checking
  4. Select both options to automatically fix file system errors and scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors
  5. Click Start and wait for the scan to complete.

If the scan finds and repairs errors, try accessing the data again. If not, proceed to the next step.

Step 4: Use Data Recovery Software

If the external hard drive still does not work, you can try using data recovery software to retrieve lost data. There are several free and paid options available online, such as EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard, Recuva, or Disk Drill. Follow the instructions carefully and expect the process to take some time, depending on the size and complexity of the data.

Step 5: Consider Professional Data Recovery Services

If none of these steps work, or if the data is too important to risk further damage, it may be wise to consider professional data recovery services. These services employ highly specialized tools and techniques to recover lost data from damaged hard drives. However, be prepared for the cost, which can range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars, depending on the severity of the damage and the amount of data recovered.


Dropping an external hard drive can be a nightmare, but with patience and persistence, you may be able to repair it and recover lost data. Remember to always back up your data regularly, use protective casing, and handle your hard drives with care to avoid future mishaps.

Whether you were transferring files or you just dropped your external hard drive, there are steps you can take to repair it after it has been dropped. Hard drives are remarkably durable, so there is a chance you can repair your drive and restore your data.

First, open your hard drive’s case. This has to be done very carefully as different types of drives may have different assembly techniques. A hard drive that has been dropped and suffered damage inside usually has a loud clicking noise. This is a sign of a broken actuator arm or read/write head. The clicking noise may be louder if the hard drive has been powered on. In this instance, turn the power off immediately to prevent further damage.

Second, once you’ve opened the drive and identified the problem area, use a brush to carefully dust off the inside of it. Examine the pieces carefully to make sure none of them are broken or damaged, and fix any loose connectors. You may want to clean the parts with a solvent as well.

Third, look for any physical damage. If you find any, repair it as much as possible. Remove broken components and use a soldering iron to fix other areas. If the damage is too significant, you may need to replace parts. Be sure to use the right parts so the drive will work properly.

Fourth, when the drive has been reassembled, power it on and listen for noises. This will help you identify any faulty components. If the noise goes away, proceed to the next step. If it is still there, you may have to replace the faulty components.

Finally, test any newly fixed components for operation. This can be done using a program that detects hard drive health. If the drive is still not working, you can try to recover any lost data. This can be done by a professional recovery service or using a software recovery program.

Once you have taken these steps, your external hard drive should be working again. Despite the damage, there is still a chance you can repair it. If you need any help, always contact a professional.

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