The PCB, Printed Circuit Board is the only component of the hard drive that an informed non-specialist can change in order to recover their data without professional help.

This being said, through my experience I have come to realise that the most important thing is successful data recovery.  For this reason, I prefer not to sell PCBs to clients who have no chance of being able to repair their hard drives simply by changing the PCB.  Check this self-diagnosis guide, and if your problem fits the conditions, I will help guide you through the necessary steps, with videos and instructions, and hopefully help you to recover your data.


If your hard drive does not work anymore; try to find out if the problem is the PCB

Electrical hard disk problems that are probably caused by PCBs:

  • Smells or burns on the PCB
  • The hard drive does not run . You cannot hear any noise or only a "tic" sound which dosen’t stop
  • The hard drive has been plugged into a socket which was the wrong voltage (causing a power surge)
  • The interface (SATA, USB, IDE) of the PCB is damaged

 In case of a power surge, instead of changing the PCB, I suggest repairing the PCB.

Hard drive problems that are not caused by PCBs:

  • The drive is running normally (no suspicious noise) but is not recognized by the computer
  • The drive is running normally, but is recognized  with a size of 0 bytes
  • The drive is running normally, but is causing SMART errors

This type of problem may be caused by disk firmware corruption. 

Your drive may also have a mechanical problem.  This would be the case if The disk has suffered a fall or shock, or even with no fall or shock , with normal wear and tear, engine failure or head failure can trigger a "head crash" a fall of the heads on the board.

If this is the case, there is only one solution, call a professional.

If the problem comes from the PCB, the next step is: How to Swap HDD PCBs