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How To Tell if SSD Is Failing

How To Tell If Ssd Is Failing 1

Regarding performance and power saving, it’s no news that SSD storage drives bypass the conventional HDD. However, even though  SSD storage is more stable, this does not mean it can’t fail. It’s just that SSD failures are much more unlikely to happen compared to HDD. So, the question now is, how can you tell if an SSD is failing? 

Quick Answer

Unlike HDDs with mechanical parts, SSDs don’t, so it’s a bit more challenging to tell when they are failing from physical damage. However, it could mean your SSD is failing when you notice specific symptoms such as your PC running slow, encountering error messages, frequent crashes, your PC wouldn’t boot, etc. 

Though SSDs have a much lower failure rate, they do happen. Knowing when your SSD is about to fail can help you better prepare to back up your files and get replacement storage on time. Keep reading to learn more about SSD failing. 

Common Symptoms Indicating a Failing SSD

Some people believe that SSD doesn’t fail. But the truth is that nothing is fail-proof! However, SSDs have a longer lifespan than HDDs, but they are also susceptible to failure the same way HDDs can. When an SSD is failing, there are symptoms you can look out for, which we elaborate on below. 

Symptom #1: Files Cannot Be Written or Read

Usually, when you have an SSD on your PC, you should be able to read and write data on it. One common symptom that indicates an SSD is failing is when you find it difficult to read and write data on it. Sometimes you may even get a read-only error when trying to write data on the drive. 

When this happens, you wouldn’t be able to do anything on your PC since it needs to read or write data to carry out processes. If you’re fortunate enough to get only the read-only error, you should quickly connect an external drive and copy all your important files out of the SSD. You can try to format the drive; perhaps it may fix the issue. 

Symptom #2: Frequent Crashes 

When your SSD is crashing, it tends not to store files correctly. And when system files are not correctly saved, your PC will run into errors in the form of crashes. It can be so severe that you may be unable to power up your computer.   

You should run a few diagnostic tests on your computer to ensure the issue is from your SSD and not some bug. Reinstalling the OS on your computer can also help resolve the issue. But if none of these solutions works, then you are definitely dealing with a failing SSD. 

Symptom #3: Bad Blocks 

In the same way you experience bad blocks on an HDD, it is also possible to experience bad blocks on an SSD. Bad blocks occur when you try to save a file on your PC, but it takes too long yet fails to save. Bad blocks can cause a variety of errors on your machine. 

If you are experiencing bad blocks on your computer, it can lead to data loss, system file corruption, error reading files, etc. When you notice the rate of bad block errors on your PC is too frequent, you need to consider checking the health of your SSD. A failing SSD is the primary cause of bad block errors. 

Symptom #4: System Files Need Repair

Sometimes when you don’t shut down your PC properly, you may get the error message that you need to repair your PC system files. Other times, when you see this error message, it could mean that your SSD is failing. 

In most cases, your computer OS will offer you an option to repair the broken system files where it corrects the error. If you fix this error but still experience the same error message when you reboot next, it could indicate that your SSD is nearing its end. 

Symptom #5: PC Runs Very Slow

As you already know, SSDs have a much faster read-write speed. So, when your computer with SSD storage is taking too long to save or load up an application when it shouldn’t, it could mean the drive is failing. And if you have tried to fix the issue to no avail, you can be more confident that you are dealing with a failing SSD. 

In some cases, the SSD may freeze when you are trying to retrieve data from it. In this case, reaching out to a data recovery specialist is advisable to recover your data, especially if you don’t have a backup. 

Similarly, if you are having trouble saving a file on your PC because of a failing SSD, you can consider saving it on external storage and then consider replacing the SSD. 

Quick Trivia

SSDs store data in semiconductors, with each cell containing between 1 and 4 bits of data, although this varies based on the type of SSD.


When your SSD is failing, it can make you lose your data. A failing SSD can also affect the performance of your computer hardware. So, replacing your SSD whenever you notice it failing would be best. You should quickly back up your files when you notice any of the symptoms discussed above. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

What causes the SSD to fail? 

SSDs do not fail like HDDsb since they do not have mechanical or moving parts. However, SSDs rely heavily on power supply and capacitors, which makes them vulnerable. So, if there’s a power surge, it can damage an SSD. Also, SSDs have a limited read-write cycle; though long, they have an expected lifespan. 

How do I check if my SSD is healthy? 

You can check the health of an SSD on Windows with third-party apps like the Crystal Disk Mark and Crystal Disk Info or on Mac with its built-in Disk Utility app. 

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