If your mobile phone seems to be past its best – either because it has run out of storage space, or the battery won’t charge, or something else is wrong with it – there are steps you can take to breathe new life into it.
Your first instinct might be to simply replace the entire handset, and in many cases this can be the best move, as mobile phones tend to get bashed about a bit over the years.
A significant cosmetic issue such as a cracked screen might simply not be worth repairing, compared with the cost of getting a brand new phone.
However, there is a bit of a ‘throw-away culture’ when it comes to some much more minor complaints, and simply knowing what to do to tackle them could allow you to hang on to a much-loved make and model of phone for longer.
If charging is a problem, you might want to look into mobile phone battery recycling as a way of getting rid of a worn-out battery and replacing it with a new one.
Wherever possible, you should charge your phone’s battery until it is full and then disconnect it from the mains supply, which prevents it from overcharging and makes it more likely that it will retain a full charge in the future.
You should also let your battery run as low as possible before charging it again, as this also helps the battery to discharge its full charge in future, before it needs to be plugged in again.
If your problem is one of storage space, there are a few things you can try to add some much-needed extra capacity to your phone.
A new memory card might be able to expand your storage space seamlessly – simply slot it into the appropriate place in your phone, and switch your handset back on.
If you’ve already got a memory card installed, it might be possible to copy the data on to a new, larger card with more free space still available.
And if that doesn’t work, check whether your phone’s manufacturer offers a data retrieval tool, that could allow you to back up contact names and numbers, photographs and text messages on to a computer or laptop.
Be realistic about how much of your data you need to carry with you – the more you can back up to a computer or external hard drive, the more free space you can free up on the phone itself.
Finally, give your phone’s fascia a spring clean – you might even want to replace the case completely, or add a clean new cover to it, if it’s seen better days.
If your phone’s fascia comes off, consider giving it a proper clean – if there’s no built-in electronics or speakers, for example, you should be able to wash the case in soapy water, provided that you let it dry thoroughly before putting your phone’s innards back into it.