Static Electricity via Printers - Harmful to Hard Drives?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by DEXTERITY, Apr 10, 2010.

  1. DEXTERITY macrumors 6502a

    Aug 14, 2004
    I may be over thinking this, but is it safe to store an external firewire drive next to a laser printer (or any printer for that matter)? I ask because I read an article saying laser printers use static electricity to put the ink on the paper.

    I don't recall reading anything stating not to place a printer next to a computer or external hard drive but figured it didn't hurt to ask.

    Thanks in advance .
  2. Wheaty macrumors regular


    Mar 6, 2009
    Cheshire, UK

    All electrical equipment that has been produced for quite some time now has to conform with various regulations regarding power use, voltage used, and electrical interference caused, or sensitivity to it... etc etc. It varies a bit from country to country for what they expect as a minimum.

    So.. Assuming your printer and firewire drive are reasonably new (say within 10yrs) It will probably be fine..

    You will always get a little interference from electrical appliances, but generally they are shielded quite well these days, so dont tend to suffer much. If anything it will be your mobile that is more likely to cause a problem than the printer, as they often boost their antenna power if a call is due to be received, so I wouldn't leave that sat right on top o your hard drive.

    But otherwise you should be fine.

  3. DEXTERITY thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Aug 14, 2004
    Thank you very much for taking the time out to respond. Appreciate your input. Yes, everything is relatively new:)

    Thanks again!
  4. AFPoster macrumors 68000

    Jul 14, 2008
    Charlotte, NC
    Laser printers have a metal coating around the case on the interior side which blocks a big portion of the static. The same thing goes with your external hard drive. You can leave your HD ontop of your printer for years / eternity and no static will effect it from the printer. So don't worry you're fine.
  5. DEXTERITY thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Aug 14, 2004
    Thank you very much. Appreciate the additional information and reassurance!

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