Planned obsolescence: the importance of maintenance

Planned obsolescence: the importance of maintenance

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Many of the objects that surround us have in their DNA theplanned obsolescence, but it is possible to delay it. Like? In addition to the choice, maintenance also plays an important role, which can also be preventive, that is, before an object breaks down or wears out, due to its normal use.

Planned obsolescence: smartphone maintenance

Let's see specifically what can be done and let's start with smartphones. Versatile and full of opportunities, smartphones have one flaw. Smartphones if they fall are seriously damaged. And on damage prevention we have taken steps backwards from past years. Let's leave out the first generation of cell phones from the 90s which were made with characteristics we could say "military" - the writer has one of them fallen from the fourth floor, with zero damage. But they weighed one kilogram and had a hundred times the functions of a smartphone today. But only ten years ago, in 2007, each cell phone had a slot in which to insert a lanyard that allowed it to be held on the wrist and prevented most accidental falls. The result is that we all went with the cell phone around the neck, as well as on the wrist. Not now. The why is simple. In smartphones, that crack is gone, so they fall out and break more. The way to remedy this exists. Obviously, we cannot pierce the smartphone with a drill, which in all likelihood would hurt. But the custody does. It is enough to do a small hole of a couple of millimeters in the case and here we can put our lanyard back.

Planned obsolescence: the maintenance of electronic equipment

And the case of the cases applies to all electronic equipment that is good to be "guarded", when not in use, in containers that protect them from shocks, dust and humidity.

In addition to this, some precious allies must not be missing in the maintenance of objects: L'Vaseline oil, isopropyl alcohol, a soft bristle brush, but not too much and one can of compressed air - replaceable if you aspire to the role of home maintenance at 360 degrees by a small compressor that will last you years and will save you over time. All this for the basic maintenance of your objects.

Let's see what they are for. Vaseline oil is not only an excellent lubricant but also a great friend of plastics and rubber. It plays a great role with cables of any type, from USB to electric ones. A cleaning the cables every six months with a small rag lightly soaked in vaseline oil it keeps them healthy, clean, flexible and safe from breakage. The same goes for rubber, even the one exposed to atmospheric agents. An occasional swipe of Vaseline oil to the rubber of your car's wipers will extend its lifespan.

Isopropyl alcoholon the other hand, it is used to clean everything that can be dirty with grease. Deeply cleanses without leaving any residue or halo, unlike denatured ethyl alcohol. The only precaution to take is to first test a piece of the plastic to be cleaned to check if it dulls the surface, which can happen with poor quality polymers. Furthermore, Ispropyl alcohol is great for cleaning battery contacts, of the SIM cards of mobile phones, of memory cards, of Usb keys and more generally of any electrical contact.

The only precaution for petroleum jelly and alcohol is to do not overdo it. Just a few drops on a clean cotton support, avoiding the use of loose cotton wool which can leave problematic threads to remove.

The soft bristle brush is for remove dust from any apparatus, which is essential for any device with a keyboard. Today's computers, in fact, are often equipped with island keyboards that are more permeable to dirt than traditional ones. And a small piece of material under the key can cause a lot of trouble while typing, up to the need to press the key twice to get a single letter, or get to the block of the same. A defective key is enough and here an entire keyboard begins to go to the landfill, not to mention the problem, if it is a laptop. Here then is that a cleaning with a brush with soft bristles, but not too much, at least once a week - more if you write a lot like the author of the article - of your keyboard will keep it in shape for a long time. Here's how to do it.

Take the brush, which must never have painted before - otherwise you will aggravate the problem because the dry paint leaves dust even on the washed brush - which will therefore only be used for this purpose and clean the keyboard holding it diagonally so that the bristles creep into the below the keys. All with the computer off of course. The first time you do this, illuminate the scene of the operation with a grazing light. You will be surprised at what emerges from under your keys.

If you want, then you can give it a pass of compressed air, being careful not to bring the can too close, or the compressor nozzle. Worth the removal of a few buttons. If then the button remains unusable, all that remains is to remove it with a small screwdriver - you will find tutorials on how to do it also in Italian and remove what you will find below. This is an undemanding operation that will not be necessary if you do a systematic cleaning and avoid eating sandwiches on the keyboard. This article, to give you a parameter, was written with a laptop that is five years old, equipped with an island keyboard and with which I write texts for 100,000 characters a month, every day, in all conditions, since I write everywhere. They make about six million keystrokes and no keys had to be removed. Certainly, the application of a waterproof membrane under the keys - which personal computers have for military use or in problematic work environments such as quarries and mines - would have avoided these problems. Except that there isplanned obsolescence.

Planned Obsolescence: Battery Management

Another important issue is related to battery management. There are few things to do, or rather that it is possible to do, since the control is entirely of the management circuit inside the smartphone. The lithium batteries hate going below 40% charge, which is why it is a good idea to recharge them when they are between 80 and 40% charged. Another thing is the charge cycles that measure the life of the battery, for those with lithium it is between 200 and 500 cycles, which is why if you avoid charge cycles, the life of the battery is extended. The way to do this is simple. Make the phone remain attached to the power supply as much as possible, such as in the office or at night. And you don't have to worry both about the fact that the battery can “charge too much” and about electricity consumption.

For the first question it must be said that all electronic devices today have a system inside them that intelligently manages the charge, interrupting it when it reaches 100%, while for consumption you have to think that a Usb charger, today, consumes, between charging phase of the battery and stand by, no more than 1W / h which means a cost of about 1.5 euros in a year. Other important things are the calibration of the recharge - see the tutorials on the net - and the temperature. Batteries like spring, i.e. a temperature between 18 and 25 ° C. So no direct sun in summer and don't hide your mobile phone under a snowman in winter.

We have talked, so far, only about electronic devices, which are the most commonly used, but nothing prevents, indeed it is desirable, that logic, at this point we can speak of logic, of preventive maintenance can also be applied to other things, such as cars, household appliances, children's toys. Periodic lubrication, with a special spray, the locks, door hinges, or rubber seals with vaseline oil, of your car can save you more serious trouble over the years. Just like the lubrication of the moving parts of a bicycle, a vehicle that many use too little, can keep it in perfect working order during the winter period. in conclusion to prevent planned obsolescence, the maintenance of things is not only useful, but even necessary.

Other related articles we recommend you read:

  • Planned obsolescence: what it is about with some examples
  • Planned obsolescence: light bulbs, smartphones and printers

Curated by Sergio Ferraris

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