Published On: Mar 1, 2024Tags:

Tech Tips: How Often Should You Restart Your Computer?

A computer cursor hovers over the Restart option.
10-100 | IT Support, Services & IT Consultancy in Milton Keynes

When requesting IT support, it’s not uncommon for users to be faced with a common, and often-dreaded question: “Have you tried turning it off and turning it back on again?” While it seems senseless and sometimes repetitive to be asked about such a straightforward potential solution, there are actually several reasons why a simple computer restart might solve some of the issues a computer might be facing at the time.

What Problems Do Computer Restarts Solve?

We’ve compiled a list of some of the most common problems that a simple computer restart has been known to help with, or solve entirely:

  1. Memory Clearing: Over time, as you use your computer, applications and processes consume system resources. Restarting your computer clears the RAM (Random Access Memory), which helps improve its performance. This is especially important if you tend to use memory-intensive applications.
  2. Software Updates: Some software updates require a system restart to take effect. Restarting ensures that your operating system and other software are running the latest versions with all the security patches and performance improvements.
  3. System Stability: Continuous operation of a computer can sometimes lead to the accumulation of minor issues, glitches, or memory leaks. Restarting helps refresh the system and resolves these problems, contributing to overall system stability.
  4. Cache and Temporary Files: Restarting your computer clears temporary files and cache, which can accumulate during regular usage. This can help free up disk space and contribute to better system performance.
  5. Network and Connectivity: A restart can also refresh network settings and resolve connectivity issues. This is particularly relevant if you’re experiencing problems with your internet connection or network-related services.
  6. Preventing Overheating: Computers generate heat during operation, and continuous usage can lead to overheating. Restarting, or even just shutting down your computer when not in use, gives your computer a chance to cool down, preventing potential hardware issues associated with excessive heat.

How Often Should You Restart Your Computer?

While it’s not strictly necessary to restart your computer every day, doing so periodically—perhaps once a week or when you notice performance issues—can help maintain a healthy and efficient computing environment. That being said, for optimal performance, we suggest picking up the habit of restarting twice a week, and even shutting your computer down over weekends if it won’t be in use. Keep in mind that modern operating systems are designed to handle prolonged periods of operation, so you won’t always encounter major, guaranteed problems if you don’t restart frequently. However, if you start to notice your computer running slower, acting less responsive, or generally acting a little strange, your first response should be to give it a restart and see if it resolves the issue.

If you don’t see any changes, or you frequently encounter issues across the board with other computers in your small to medium business, please give our experienced sales team a call, or email us at We’ll be happy to work with you to get you on a regular support system to keep an eye out for the safety and health of your IT infrastructure, but we may ask you when the last time you restarted your computer was first!