How to Replace a Hard Drive on an eMachine Computer

By Jack Gerard

EMachines computers are known for their low prices, but unfortunately these computers often do not have the long life that some more expensive brands enjoy. While most eMachines computers will operate with no problems for several years, in time parts replacements or other upgrades may become necessary. One of the most common of these upgrades is replacing the hard drive, either because of hard drive problems or simply because the user wishes to have more storage space on her computer.

Things You'll Need

  • Small Phillips head screwdriver

Step 1

Power down the eMachines computer and unplug it from the power outlet. Remove the left side panel from the computer case by removing the two screws or thumbscrews in the back and sliding the panel toward the back of the computer. Should the panel not move, check to make sure that there isn't a latch or switch on the rear of the computer case that needs to be slid downward in order to remove the panel. Not all cases will have this feature.

Step 2

Locate the hard drive; it should be in a 3 1/2-inch drive bay located beneath the computer's CD and DVD drives. If your computer has a floppy disc drive, the hard drive will most likely be located in a bay beneath it. Check the position of the floppy drive to make sure that you know which 3 1/2-inch drive it is. You should notice two cables plugging into the back of the hard drive; one of these is the power cable that comes from the power supply, and the other is a data cable that is connected to the computer's motherboard.

Step 3

Unplug the power and data cables from the rear of the hard drive, leaving nothing else plugged in to it. Remove the screws that hold it into its mounting bay, setting them aside until you need them for the new hard drive.

Step 4

Slide the old hard drive out of the mounting bay, being careful not to drop it or hit it against any of the motherboard's components. Set the drive aside and pick up your new hard drive, then slide the new drive into the same bay that you just took the old drive out of.

Step 5

Line the small holes in the side of the drive up with the holes in the mounting bay. Secure the new drive by screwing in the screws that you had previously removed, then plug in the power and data cables that you had unplugged from the previous drive. The cables will only plug in when oriented correctly, so you won't have to worry about accidentally plugging them in wrong. Once the cables have been plugged in you can put the side panel back onto the case and plug your eMachines computer in once again.

Tips & Warnings

  • Remember that you will need to install an operating system on your new hard drive if the hard drive that you remove from your eMachines computer contained your old OS.