How Long Does an iMac last?

When choosing a computer, it’s important to take note of the longevity of the device to assure that you are going to get your money’s worth. The stationary Apple desktop, iMac, is a computer that you could consider. It is a fantastic choice for those who are looking for a computer that is compatible with audio and visual work.

The average lifespan of an iMac lasts is at least 5 years. If properly cared for, an iMac can last up to 12 years. However, this all depends on the purpose it is used for and how well it is maintained. To use an iMac for more than 5 years, it is better to invest in a higher configuration.

If you are considering an iMac, there a few ways to keep it running for a long time and a few new models you can choose from that may best fit your needs. In addition to thinking about the longevity of an iMac, you should also consider its overall performance during that lifetime.

Maintain the Lifespan

To maintain or even extend the lifetime of your iMac, you should be sure to do the routine updates, keep it away from liquids, have enough hard drive and RAM space (random access memory), and avoid harmful downloads/viruses.

You should expect to update your computer every 18-24 months. Updating your computer provides you with the most up-to-date features and can help keep it running smoothly.

It’s not necessary to do every OS update offered on the iMac because there are bugs that may not have been fine-tuned and developed to the best capacity. This is why it is best to update the iMac every 18-24 months. This ensures that each bug and update has been adjusted properly.

Cleaning your Computer

It is also important to know how to properly clean an iMac computer. When computers are not properly cleaned, it can cause the device to have physical issues that might not be covered by the Apple Product Warranty.

According to, one of the number one killers of computers is dust and/or debris in the system.

To take the best physical care of your computer, be sure to use a lint-free cloth (preferably the one that came with the computer) and dampen it with water to wipe off the screen.

To clean out the air vents from dust and debris, use a compressed air can and lightly blow the air outwards. This ensures that you are not pushing the debris further into the computer.

Not only should you physically clean the body of the iMac, but you should also keep the hard drive clean from unnecessary data and memory. Having a full hard drive can significantly slow down the system, which can be very frustrating. If there are programs, widgets, or pictures that you no longer need, it is best to erase these to keep the device running faster.

Plus it will make it easier for you to navigate the files and applications on your computer. A messy storage system makes everything harder.

Be sure to wipe the hard drive of your iMac computer unnecessary programs every few years for the computer to run faster. Also, be sure to check the small trash bin widget at the bottom of your screen. Applications and pictures that are deleted are not automatically wiped away from the device’s memory.

Be sure to go into the trash widget and choose to “empty all” to ensure that all unnecessary items are not taking up more space on your computer.


In addition to doing routine updates and taking proper care of your computer, you can also invest in AppleCare. It provides 24-hour access to Apple experts in case you are having technical issues with the iMac. It also covers accidental damage and hardware issues. Customers have the option to purchasing this coverage online at

This offer comes with each new Apple device after the first 90 days of the initial purchase. After the first 90 days, you can extend your coverage to AppleCare+ or the AppleCare Protection Plan. Having AppleCare in place is a great option for those who would like extra security to ensure the lifespan of the computer

Common Issues

As iMacs get older, it is common for the devices to face some technical issues. All technology becomes worn down over time, but there are some warning signs you can watch out for that might show that your iMac is nearing the end of its useful lifespan.

One of the most common problems that iMac users face is power-related settings that relate to start-up functions, speaker volume, resolution, start-up disc selection, and storage. This is affected by the System Management Controller.

To fix these problems on your own, you can restart your iMac and press Command, Option, P, and R to see if that resolves the issue. If restarting your computer and pressing these keys doesn’t help, it is best to get in contact with Apple Support.

Another issue that iMac users face is data getting automatically deleted from the trash application by accident. If you deleted an application, picture, or widget on the iMac by accident, you can simply open up the trash application and restore the item. However, if the trash has been emptied, you must use the Mac data recovery software to restore the deleted items.

Some users have also noticed that their mail folders get deleted after certain OS updates. You can try to use the Time Machine back up or re-indexing the mail application. Be sure to be patient with this issue as it can take up to a few hours if the mail application had a large number of emails stored.

Another issue that iMac users have faced is the Kernel Panics. This is when the computer restarts, the screen goes black and shows an error message. This can happen if you are running out of space on your iMac, using incompatible applications or firmware, and/or have broken disk permissions.

To fix this problem, it is crucial to free up space on your computer as this can be a direct cause of the problem. If you have outdated firmware, it is important that it gets updated and is compatible with the computer.

Be sure to back up any of your files in your iMac because Kernel Panics will delete items that you are working on. Backing up files is especially important in case you need to erase and reinstall the macOS. Otherwise, your data will be deleted from the computer.

As computers get older, it is common to have performance issues, such as taking a long time to download items and slow processing in general. The best solution for this is to restore the macOS to try to reboot the performance.

Uses of the iMac

The longevity of a computer is not the only crucial aspect that you should consider. You must be looking into computers that meet all of your needs and expectations.

Although they require maintenance and run into issues just like any other computer, iMacs are popular for a reason. They have a wider variety of uses and are handy for lots of office purposes. iMacs have a variety of uses, i.e. school, entertainment, running a business, photography, etc. Depending on what you use the device for can affect its longevity. This is why it is necessary to consider how you are using the computer.

Each model of the computer has a similar lifespan, but each has different capabilities.

If you are using an iMac for a lot of different things, it is better to invest in a model that has more storage. Here is a list of the contemporary iMacs and their storage and processing options.

Memoryup to 16 GBup to 16 GBup to 168 GBup to 256 GB
Processor2 core8 core10 core18 core

According to the above table, the larger the iMac model is, the higher the configurations. The 27″ and Pro have a larger processor and more room for memory.

The processors (also known as CPUs) in iMacs affect how quickly a program can create output for the user. The higher the processor, the faster the computer will perform.

The CPU does not directly affect the lifespan of the computer, but it helps keep the computer run faster for a longer period of time. This isn’t to say that a smaller model of the iMac is not an option to consider, it just depends on how you are using the computer.

The memory of the computer is important to take note of because the RAM, also known as the random access memory, affects the short-term storage of the computer. With iMacs, you can choose to purchase the computer with the standard configuration or expand the RAM size to have more storage space.

The iMac Pro has the largest amount of memory storage (up to 256 gigabytes) and has the fastest processing power. It is important to note that Apple has discontinued the iMac Pro as of March 2021, which means that they are only selling refurbished models. There are no further updates nor refurbishes on the iMac pro.

Servicing or Repairing an iMac

If you are having troubles with your iMac, it is best to go to an Apple store or an Apple-authorized service provider. If any third parties service a computer, Apple is not responsible to cover any damage that is done by the unauthorized service.

Apple has many options for those who are seeking to repair or service their iMac.

There is a variety of help available from Apple Support online at You can choose the device that you are having trouble with and tell them what you need. You can also chat with Apple Support specialists online in a chat room at This is a great option so that you can see exactly the steps that you need to take to try to repair your computer from home.

Apple also has customer support available over the phone. No matter where you are in the world, there is always access to over-the-phone customer service support. Before calling Apple Support, be sure to have your serial number and account information ready so that a customer service agent can efficiently assist you.

If you understand how to repair and service your own computer, Apple also offers a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Parts service. This is a legally authorized service. Apple sends the needed parts and instructions to the customer and expects the unneeded parts of the computer to be sent within ten days after receiving the new parts.

If you are far away from an Apple store and are not able to service the device on your own, you can see if you qualify for Direct Mail-In service from Apple. The company will send the packaging that you need for your device (although they may not pay for the shipping and handling fees) and complete the service once the package is received.

Upgrading Computers

Although the iMac can last up to 12 or more years, many people consider upgrading their computer for a newer model approximately every 5 years. This provides users with the most up-to-date technology, faster processing systems, and more advanced features. Many Apple customers do not push iMacs to their full capacity due to this option.

If you are concerned about losing information from an upgrade, Apple has iCloud storage, a memory application that allows you to securely keep data in all of your Apple devices. You don’t have to worry about changing computers and losing significant data.

However, be wary about this storage offer. It can slow new devices down with the ongoing process of transferring information from one device to another.

If there are crucial applications, pictures, and other data that you will need on a new device, it’s best to pick and choose what you need so that you don’t slow down your new iMac. Transferring old, unnecessary data to a new iMac can take up space and even slow the computer down.

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