A Deep Insight into Mechanical Failures in Hard Disk Drive (HDD)

Mechanical failures in hard disk drive (HDD) mean that the drive’s moving components malfunction. It can result from various factors and bring out miscellaneous terrible problems. Now, this article will give a complete insight into such failures.

As we all know, hard drive is one of the most widely-used data storage devices in the current era. Even so, it is still vulnerable due to its sensitive moving parts. To be honest, mechanical failures are common for hard drive. It can take place for a variety of reasons. For instance, storing a hard drive is an overheating room can gradually damage its actuator arm over time, speeding up drive degradation and finally resulting in mechanical failure. In order to evade such failures, we have to get a deep insight into it. Now, read on to probe into it.

A Deep Insight into Mechanical Failures in Hard Disk Drive (HDD)


In generally, hard drive will be subject to mechanical failures due to stress, wear, power failures, manufacturer faults, user mistakes and so on. The followings are the most common causes.

  1. Hard drive is dropped or knocked over.
  2. Hard drive is delivered, stored or handled improperly, such as being placed in a crowded room.
  3. Hard drive has been used for a long time, so the moving parts are degraded.
  4. Hard drive suffers abrupt power failures, including power surges, blackouts, improper power cycling, static electricity, etc.
  5. Hard drive was manufactured improperly.
  6. Hard drive suffers water or fire damage.


When a hard drive encountered all the above factors, its components will become compromised, like the followings:

  1. More and more bad sectors appear on the platters.
  2. Hard drive heads crashed.
  3. Motor fails in the hard drive.
  4. Hard drive platters get damaged or scratched.
  5. The drive connectors become broken.
  6. Hard drive Printed Circuit Board is burnt or damaged.
  7. Hard drive firmware is corrupt.
  8. Drive spindle bearing works improperly.
  9. Hard drive cannot spin up as normal.


Although hard drive suffers the above issues, if you don’t disassemble the drive, you are unable to figure them out. Hence, if you want to identify if a hard drive is subject to mechanical failures, you can refer to the following symptoms:

  1. Clicking, beeping, buzzing or scraping noises come from the hard drive.
  2. Hard drive cannot be recognized by the computer or other devices.
  3. Hard drive is incapable of being powered on.
  4. You cannot access the hard drive data.
  5. Your computer runs strangely slowly.
  6. Computer operating system is pretty unstable and frequently crashes.


In face of mechanical hard drive failures, some users may want to run logical data recovery software to repair the drive, such as PST recovery via Outlook recovery tool. Yet, it is totally wrong. Mechanical failures should be dealt with mechanically, instead of logically. Thus, you’d better ask for professional assistance, rather than attempt DIY repair.

Author Introduction:

Shirley Zhang is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including corrupt mdf and outlook repair software products. For more information visit www.datanumen.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *