Question How often should I replace a SSD

Foamhead

Junior Member
Sep 10, 2019
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I've had mine for a few years and it's still going fine but I have been told they work until they don't, with little warning before they crap out.

Are there any signs an SSD is "wearing out", or is it best to replace them within a given time?
 

Shmee

Memory and Storage, Graphics Cards
Super Moderator
Sep 13, 2008
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Backups and redundancy of data is key. You can check the SMART data of the drive, for some ideas, but a lot of SSDs do have sudden deaths if they fail. What SSD are you using?

I will say though, I rarely have seen a HDD die suddenly, maybe like if it was dropped or killed in a power surge from lightning or something. Usually they devolop bad sectors or mechanical problems, causing them to slow down and fail over time.
 
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kschendel

Member
Aug 1, 2018
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I haven't had an SSD fail (in use) on me yet. All of my hard drive failures have been sudden: drive was fine yesterday, power up today and either horrible grinding noise or silence.

Anyway, as already stated, back up regularly and don't worry about it. If you have really critical, up-to-the-minute data on an SSD, I'd seriously consider mirroring it either in software or hardware.
 

eek2121

Golden Member
Aug 2, 2005
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I haven't had an SSD fail (in use) on me yet. All of my hard drive failures have been sudden: drive was fine yesterday, power up today and either horrible grinding noise or silence.

Anyway, as already stated, back up regularly and don't worry about it. If you have really critical, up-to-the-minute data on an SSD, I'd seriously consider mirroring it either in software or hardware.
Same, and my oldest ones pre-date trim. I am convinced that SSDs are more reliable than manufacturers realize. I have 22 (!) SSDs ranging from 64gb to 4tb.
 

In2Photos

Senior member
Mar 21, 2007
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My first (and only) SSD failure was on my son's PC earlier this year. It worked one night, he shut the PC down to go to bed. The next day it wouldn't boot. Took the drive out and checked it in another machine and determined that it was faulty. It was replaced under warranty. First time I can recall a drive completely failing on me. With HDD there was always some warning that it was failing and you could migrate data to another drive and replace it. We had nothing with the SSD.
 
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OlyAR15

Senior member
Oct 23, 2014
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I had a Samsung 960 die on me while I was downloading a movie from iTunes onto it. Literally died. One moment everything was fine, the next, I noticed iTunes had locked up hard. I had to reboot, then noticed that the drive was no longer showing up in File Explorer. Rebooted to bios, and it was missing there too. Tried in another pc. Dead.
 

Fallen Kell

Diamond Member
Oct 9, 1999
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Well, to replace it:
1) Buy a new one that is the same size or larger (preferalbly larger).
2) Install the new drive into the system
3) Use a tool such as clonezilla to clone the old drive to the new drive
4) Remove the old drive

Now, that is the basics. As for the more details, it all depends on what you are moving from and moving to and possibly issues with the OS. For most people the SSD is the boot/OS disk. And in a lot of cases, they will simply take this as an opportunity to re-install the OS and clean out a lot of junk (especially in the case of MS Windows, all the patches on patches, and registry changes over time just tend to slow things down compared to a rebuild with just the latest service pack and/or build).

On the other discussions on failing SSDs, I have had very few occasions where they have simply failed and are inaccessible. I have had a couple fail to a read-only state (drive reached max writes for the memory), however, the drive's data could be copied from it (you could not boot from it as the OS wanted to open logs, etc., but if you booted from CD/DVD/USB/Network you could access the data). This took years of massive writes to the drives that failed to read-only, and tools like Crystal Disk Info and Smartmontools confirmed the issue.
 
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mastertech01

Moderator Emeritus<br>Elite Member
Nov 13, 1999
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The SSD hard drive on my old Elitebook failed after about 10 years. It started by having errors and having to restore the bad sectors. Within a couple weeks it used up all its spare sectors and just stopped booting. I replaced it with a standard SATA drive and it was so slow that I just couldnt use it anymore. I replaced it with a Zbook and eventually replaced the SATA drive with a SATA SSD and it was back to its old quick self, but not near as fast as the Zbook with NVMe drives onboard. I gave the old Elitebook to my wife to play with for shopping around the internet
 

Tech Junky

Senior member
Jan 27, 2022
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It depends on how much data you're moving around to the NVME. Use HWINFO to see what kind of use you've put onto the drives.

1654015347879.png

The WD at the top has been in use for ~6 months and the PNY ~2 years.

5% use / wear per year would indicate 20 year lifespan. Now, in reality though with how often tech is changing it will probably get swapped out in a couple of years for something faster or with more storage. They both have 5 year warranties though if they do fail.

As to the whole backups thing... I keep all of my data on a "NAS" which is in a Raid 10 for speed and mirroring. I also have a spare drive in the array in case one fails it will auto rebuild the backup data. I'm constantly making changes or wiping the drives for fresh installs of Windows just to purge anything that's slowing them down or quirks in the OS. In fact I just did windows the other day because the one image I was using was causing issues. I didn't really need the NAS to backup anything as I split the drive into 100GB for Windows and the rest for storage.
 
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MysteriousThing

Junior Member
May 24, 2022
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I'd say it depends on the TBW (Terabytes written) of the model of SSD that you are using. Even low end SSDs tend to have TBW in the hundreds and if you are only using this for standard consumer usage your drive could be good for many years. Like everyone else has been saying, back ups are king if you are concerned about loosing data on the drive.
 

aigomorla

Cases and Cooling Mod PC Gaming Mod Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 28, 2005
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I still have a sammy 830 which is running strong...
Ive had a MANY MANY OCZ drives fail.

There is no real answer for this question.
Id say the ONLY real answer is:

1. if its broken
2. if you need more space.

Otherwise i see no need to replace a SSD, nor can you prepare for it to fail, as they are like a lottery ticket.. It just happens or it doesn't.
 

Tech Junky

Senior member
Jan 27, 2022
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I concur with @aigomorla in that it doesn't usually give any warning when it happens to fail.

Spinners at least start with some hints something is about to happen like clicking noises or errors causing a chkdsk to occur.

I don't personally worry about it though since I have it backing up every 6 hours to my Raid / NAS and have more drives than I know what to do with at the moment. If you're truly worried about it and have a 2nd slot on the board for a drive you could buy a new drive and convert to a Raid 1 which mirrors them to each other and if it does fail it switches to the new drive automatically and keeps on working.
 

biostud

Lifer
Feb 27, 2003
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One of my colleagues SSD just stopped working, she was very happy that I had insisted that they used onedrive on their computers. It took 20 minutes to have her up and running on a spare laptop with access to all her work.
 
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Hotrod2go

Member
Nov 17, 2021
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Only ever had 1 SSD die on me, it was Adata SU530 series from few yrs ago & as usual with these devices, no warning. Since then, always cautious of purchasing anything Adata related.
Once bitten, twice shy... you got it!
 
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IntelUser2000

Elite Member
Oct 14, 2003
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You know how they say SSDs have "no moving parts" and thus more reliable?

Counter 1: Electrons are matter and every time a matter passes through an object, or interferes with it, it degrades it slightly
Counter 2: Electronics without TBW ratings fail all the time. That's why repair shops exist, and profitable too.

Complexity is also the enemy of reliability. Modern electronics are immensely complex. One fail, and usually the whole thing is dead. And how many are intermittent failures that cascade to the rest?

I bought a simple water pump that goes on top of a jug to pump water. You press a button on top and it turns on. I had two fail due to water going in. I tried conformal coating, which made it last longer. That failed too, then I siliconed the inside and taped the rest. That failed.

So I said "screw it" ripped up the electronics and connected the motor directly to the battery using a very small value resistor. Then took another pair of wires from the battery so I can charge it manually. And then I took a small plastic bag and covered the whole thing.

Simpler is sometimes better.
 

aigomorla

Cases and Cooling Mod PC Gaming Mod Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 28, 2005
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lmao i forgot i still also have an original Intel X25-E that's still in service as a cache drive.
Its SLC tho meaning they were designed to last, but thats probably the oldest component i own thats still in service and its a SSD.
 

sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
88,181
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id rather outlive my PC components if you know what i mean.. lol...

And i really don't want to wear gloves each time i handle a part in risk of getting lead poisoning.
I don't touch the pcb other than the bracket and maybe a corner of the pcb. I also don't lick my hands clean right after I handle things.
 
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