How to do hard disk recovery with head issues?

Hard disk recovery – head crash

A head crash occurs when hard drive’s read-write heads come in contact with rotating magnetic platters. Normally heads are flying over the surfaces on a thin layer of air. If this occurs the hard disk recovery is needed.And heads are not supposed to touch the rotating platters unless they are within specially designed parking area of a platter. When such accidental impact happens (usually due to shocks, drops, or electrical surges) both magnetic heads and surfaces might be seriously damaged or even completely destroyed.  After the initial crash particles from damaged area are landing onto other areas causing secondary crashes and bringing more damages sometimes rendering the drive unrecoverable. The symptom of a head crash is the infamous “click of death” – damaged magnetic heads being unable to read calibration servo tracks from platters are making repetitive clicking sounds while trying to re-calibrate. Head crash can happen to any hard drive regardless of type, brand, model or size.

Data recovery from drives affected by a head crash is performed by replacing of a head assembly with a compatible one taken from donor drive of same make and model. Usually after a head crash drive’s magnetic surfaces have large amounts of bad sectors so data must be extracted extremely carefully with the help of professional data recovery tools.

Hard disk recovery – head stiction

This problem is a result of shocks and drops, sometimes – power surges and outages. Both heads and surfaces are super finely polished so when they accidentally come into a contact (normally heads are flying over the surface on a thin layer of air) they are getting stuck together by force of molecular attraction. Drive affected by head stiction problem is not registered in computer’s OS and not visible in the BIOS. Typically, this issue affects laptop models (1.8 and 2.5 inches, all manufacturers). Desktop models of hard drives have much more powerful motors so head stiction is less common. The symptom of head stiction is faint humming sound on drive’s power-up.

Data recovery from drives affected by head stiction problem is usually performed using proper unsticking heads from surfaces with the help of special tools, sometimes head assembly replacement is needed. Our success rate for such recovery jobs is at least 99%. Clean room required.