Apple’s hardware has an excellent reputation for lasting a long time. It often feels like the company’s computers are built to last. Unfortunately, even Apple products cannot last forever, so at one point you will have to say goodbye. How do you determine if it’s time to replace your Mac? Let’s take a look at some of the biggest warning signs.
How Long Should a Mac Last?
There is no exact science to properly answer this question. Two people could buy a Mac on the same day, and one Mac may last longer than the other. That could come down to a variety of factors including what both individuals do on their computers. Someone who uses professional software like Photoshop or does video editing may find themselves with a shorter lifespan because of more demanding requirements.
The good news is that Apple generally supports its computers with software updates for many years. In other words, if handled properly, they can easily last for years. This brings us to the warnings signs that indicate it’s time for a replacement.
You Run Out of Free Space
File sizes are constantly growing. Even with the rapid growth of cloud storage, there are still plenty of files and tools you need on your computer. Just as the 8GB iPhone had to grow up, so, too, do some Mac computers. If your Mac only has 128GB of storage or less, you may find yourself constantly deleting files so you can free up space. Yes, there are external hard drives you can purchase, but they, too, are a band-aid solution. You can use cloud space or an external drive for a while, but at some point, they are just not as efficient as built-in storage.
You Have Damaged Hardware
Apple’s reputation for expensive hardware often leads to outstanding product control, but repairs can also be expensive. In the event your computer suffers hardware damage, it may be time to replace it.
In a lot of these cases, the repair can cost more than the computer is worth. That is especially true if you need your display fixed. Even on an older MacBook from 2015, repairing the screen can cost more than $500 at one of Apple’s official store locations. You can easily get a new gaming laptop for that price. If your charging port is no longer working (which means you can’t charge the laptop), that, too, can lead to hundreds of dollars in repair. It will be better to get a new Mac.
Your Computer Is Outdated
In today’s world, hardware components like memory RAM mean everything for users who need to multitask. For those on the go, battery life can mean everything. Whether it’s an older battery or a lack of RAM, outdated hardware or software can affect your productivity. The last thing you want is to have to hook up the charging cable every time you turn on the Mac because the battery doesn’t hold a charge anymore.
Older Apple computers may allow you to upgrade some internal components like RAM or swapping a HDD for an SSD, but again, those are band-aid solutions. More importantly, replacing these components is basically impossible without voiding your warranty. If running Chrome with five tabs on your hardware causes the machine to come to a standstill, you know it is time to replace it.
Cannot Run Latest macOS Version
For years Apple has made it a habit to update its macOS versions with exciting new features. They even have a yearly conference every summer to show macOS changes to the world. A good sign that your computer may need to be replaced is that it cannot handle the latest update.
The latest software update, macOS 10.15 Catalina, was capable of supporting Mac computers from as far back as 2012. Eight years is definitely a good lifespan for any computer. However, if your computer is older than that, not being able to get the most recent update can lead to potential issues. Software developers may stop providing support for some of your favorite applications. If that is the case, it’s time to replace your Mac.
Apple has made a business out of providing longlasting hardware alongside stellar customer support. Those two things combined have helped give its computers a longer-than-usual lifespan among computer manufacturers. And luckily, there are still ways to make good use of your old Mac.