The clicking hard drive sound is a serious sign of an issue. It’s also known as the “click of death”. Click. Tick. Bang. Ping- whatever sound you hear coming from your hard drive can sometimes be alarming. 

It can be disturbing to hear the clicking hard drive sound when you have a crucial deadline to meet. Either you can turn a deaf ear- assuming it to be the sound of the fan, or cautiously fix it. However, not everyone is technically sound and experiencing such a strange issue may boggle you a bit. 

So, here you will discover the common causes of the clicking hard drive, ways you can fix it and the platform that can be valuable for you. So, let’s begin the read:

The Most Common Cause Of Hard Drive Clicking

If you have a newer model of the hard drive, the cause could be either software hardware or software; however, in the older versions, it is mostly hardware. Nevertheless, whatever model you have it’s important to identify the cause of the issue. 

You hear the clicking hard drive sound when the actuator is not functioning smoothly. The purpose of the actuator is to input and interpret the data present on the disc. It scans by either writing or reading the data over the hard drive. 

The motion should be smooth and uninterrupted. But if it’s not, the actuator repeatedly tries to reset its functionality. In this way, it causes the clicking sound. However, here you need to find out the factors that disturb the smoothness of the actuator’s arm. So, here are some important causes listed below:

Table of Contents

Physical Damage

Physical damage is one of the most common issues causing clicking hard drive sounds. If the device is dropped, exposed to fire, moistened or subjected to high magnetic fields it means that your drive is damaged. It may not function properly and would require a professional’s assistance.

Wear and Tear

The next cause is the occurrence of wear and tear in your hard drive. Have you been using the same drive for years? If so, don’t you think it can malfunction or work with poor efficiency. If the actuator arm is damaged or wears out it will cause the clicking hard drive noise. So, check that as well.

Damaged Platters

The next on the list is damaged platters. If your hard drive’s platter is damaged it may contribute to the clicking noise. This makes the actuator arm function improperly. The arm depends on the platter which is of no use. In this disruption, the arm swings back and forth for the intact platter. The movement creates a rhythmic ticking sound.

Electrical Problems

Have you checked your power supply unit? If not, you better should. Because due to the defective power supply unit the drive will lack sufficient flow of power. It’s advisable to shift to an alternative source for the power supply. This will let you have a clear picture. Furthermore, electrical storms and power surges can be major contributors as well.

Service Area Issue

The service area is a portion of the hard drive where all the manufacturer data is stored. If the data gets damaged the drive will function inefficiently. This will make the actuator arm swing back and forth to get to the information. Thus, eventually, the arm will generate the clicking hard drive noise.

Read/Write Head Misalignment

Read/Write Head misalignment comes as a major issue. The read/write heads get out of alignment when a hard drive is dropped or mishandled.

Manufacturer’s Defect

Issues existing in the firmware also contribute to the clicking hard drive noise. Furthermore, issues regarding the occurrence of manufacturing errors or faulty parts are something you should be cautious about as well. You may get the issues resolved with the device warranty but there is no way that you will recover your lost data on it.

clicking hard drive

How To Fix The Clicking Hard Drive Sound?

Unless you are a tech-geek, you must not get your hands on the hard drive. It has a number of sensitive components that can easily get damaged with minor mishandling. 

You being a layperson with no technical insights is more likely to completely damage your drive. Hence, it’s best to seek professional help.

Here is a platform, Crystal Disk, an open-source HDD health monitoring platform. It enables users to discover and learn about essential HDD information. It lets them monitor disk temperature and S.M.A.R.T. values. 

Available as a portable version, here are some amazing features of the platform:

  • Change dialogue design
  • Show S.M.A.R.T Information
  • Internationalization (i18n)
  • Show HDD Information

Secondary Measures To Fix The Clicking Hard Drive

There are some secondary measures for which you may not need a professional’s assistance. Firstly check whether your hard drive is getting sufficient power or not. If your entire system is connected through a single socket, look for the solution as it’s overwhelming for a single source. 

Secondly, you can even check if the wires are intertwined. Secure them neatly and arrange them properly. The last step is to secure your data. The moment you hear the clicking sound, you must head to create a complete data backup. Among the many troubleshooting tricks, this comes as the best one. 

clicking hard drive

Common Signs of Hard Drive Failure

The clicking sound is the single most prominent alert about a hard drive malfunctioning. However, you must look for other signs as well. Check the list below:

  • Your hard drive is detached at the moment when you start your computer
  • You receive a pop-up message regarding “Operating System cannot be found”
  • Your hard drive is taking a long time to access your files. 
  • The system suddenly reboots 
  • Your desktop stops recognizing your hard drive as you insert it through the external device port.  

How Long Do Hard Drives Last?

The life span of your hard drive depends on multiple variables including type, brand, environment and size. Brands reputed for developing cutting edge hard drives assure a longer lifespan. 

Apart from this, avoid reading/writing on your hard drive frequently as it makes the hard drive age faster. Moreover, you must keep it away from water and dust. 

clicking hard drive

Things To Avoid Doing With Clicking Hard Drive

You may be enthusiastic about fixing your hard drive issue yourself. However, as it’s an outdated technology, you must handle the critical aspects and components efficiently. Hence, here are some techniques you must never try doing. 

Use of Freezer To Cool Down Your Hard Drive

If you think a freezer can help you cool down your hard drive, you are sorely mistaken. It constricts the mechanics. It can either get corrosion of electrical and drive components.

User Recovery Software

If you continuously run the data recovery software, it can cause more technical issues to the drive. If you find a need to get professional assistance, you can rely on Jet Data.

Open the Drive Yourself

Never open the hard drive without the supervision or assistance of a professional technician. You might end up ruining your hard drive once and for all. Therefore, you require a clean-room facility to repair the write/read heads.

Wrap Up

No need to waste time figuring out ways to fix your hard drive when Jet Data is here for you. If you do not have much technical understanding, it’s best to get connected to professionals. By doing so, you will not only be able to fix the hard drive but recover your data as well.