Hard Drive and Heads Recovery
Table of Contents

Hard drive head replacement is a complex process requiring high precision and technical expertise. Our highly skilled engineers have mastered this delicate operation at our company, ensuring that your data is recoverable, even from drives that have suffered significant physical damage. This blog post will take you behind the scenes to illustrate how our team performs these complex procedures. We will provide insight into the expert craftsmanship and dedication that goes into every hard drive head replacement.

When Hard Drive Read Write Head Replacement is Necessary

Data loss can be a major setback for individuals and businesses. Hard disk drives are the primary storage devices for our digital information, and their failure can result in the loss of valuable data. Fortunately, data recovery engineers can help recover data from damaged hard drives. One of the methods that they use to recover data is hard drive head replacement.

A hard drive consists of multiple components, including the platters, spindle motor, read/write heads, and the actuator arm. The read/write heads are responsible for reading and writing data to the platters. In the event of a head crash, the read/write head may physically contact the platter surface, damaging the head and the platter. This damage can lead to data loss.  In such cases, hard drive head replacement is necessary.

Failures Lead to Hard Drive Head Replacement

​Head crashes are one of the many reasons that may require hard drive head replacement. The following are some common failures that can lead to the need for this procedure:

Head Crash

The most common reason for hard disk drive failure is a head crash. A crash occurs when the read/write head physically contacts the platter surface. This can cause damage to the head and the platter, resulting in data loss.

Electrical Failure

Hard drives can experience electrical failures due to power surges, lightning strikes, or other power-related issues. This can cause damage to the read/write head, and the head may need to be replaced.

Read Write Heads Failure

Firmware Corruption

The firmware on a hard drive is responsible for controlling the read/write heads and other components. Corruption of the firmware can cause the hard drive to malfunction, resulting in data loss or corruption. A hard drive head replacement may sometimes be necessary to recover the data.

Physical Damage

Hard drives can be physically damaged due to dropping or other accidents. Physical damage can cause the read/write head to become misaligned, resulting in data loss or corruption. In severe cases, there may be a need to replace the read/write head assembly.

Wear and Tear

Hard drives are susceptible to wear and tear over time. The read/write head can become worn and damaged due to frequent use. If the damage is severe, replacing a hard drive head is critical.

Manufacturing Defects

In some cases, hard drives may have manufacturing defects that cause them to fail prematurely. A head’s failure can cause data loss or corruption. If the fault is severe, our technicians safely perform the replacement.

Our Engineers Describe How to Replace Hard Drive Heads

To perform a hard drive head replacement, data recovery engineers must have specialized skills and equipment. The process involves several steps, including the following:



The first step in the HDD recovery process is to review the problem with the hard drive. The engineer will assess the symptoms of the drive failure, such as clicking or grinding sounds, and determine if a head replacement is required.


Cleanroom Environment

To prevent further damage to the hard disk drive and to ensure a successful recovery, the engineer will perform the head replacement in a cleanroom environment. This environment is designed to minimize dust and other contaminants that can damage the sensitive components of the hard drive.


Head Swap

The engineer will remove bad heads from the actuator arm and replace them with a compatible head. This process requires precise alignment and adjustment of the new head to ensure it functions properly.



Once the head replacement is complete, the engineer will test the HDD to ensure the new head functions correctly. This involves running diagnostic tests and scanning the drive to verify that the data can be read from and written to the platters.



After the testing is complete, the engineer can begin the drive recovery process. This involves using specialized methods and head replacement tools to recover the data from the damaged hard drive with failed heads.

Performing a hard drive head replacement is a complex and delicate process that requires specialized skills and equipment. Our data recovery engineers are trained to work with the sensitive components of a hard drive, including the read/write heads, platters, and actuator arm. They are proficient in working in a clean room environment to prevent further damage to the drive.

Challenges of Head Replacement of Hard Drive

Finding a compatible replacement head is one of the most significant challenges in performing a head replacement. Each hard drive model has a specific type of read/write head designed to work with that particular model. If a replacement head is unavailable, the engineer may need to source one from a donor drive or find a suitable alternative.

Another challenge is the precise alignment of the new head. To ensure it functions correctly, the read/write head must be aligned with the platters to within microns. The engineer must also adjust the head’s flying height to ensure it does not contact the platter surface and cause further damage.

Data Recovery for Failed Read Write Heads

Despite these challenges, hard drive head replacement is a highly effective method for recovering data from damaged hard drives. In addition, it is also one of the most complex and delicate processes that require specialized skills and equipment. 

Engineers at PITS Global Data Recovery Services have the knowledge and skills to perform read/write a head replacement successfully.

Working in ISO Certified Class 10 Cleanroom, we achieve the highest results of data recovery from damaged HDDs. With years in the recovery industry, our professional data recovery company supports a 99% success rate. We are able to work on any type, brand, and model of a hard drive.

If you notice any warning signs on your hard disk drive, do not hesitate to contact our team. You can do so by filling out the form below or calling our customer service at (855)-967-3984

Frequently Asked Questions

Hard drive head replacement is a delicate process that involves replacing a hard drive’s read/write head. This is often necessary when the original read/write head has been damaged or is malfunctioning, causing data loss or corruption.

Hard drive head replacement can be necessary for several reasons, including wear and tear, physical damage, firmware corruption, power surges, or manufacturing defects. These can cause the read/write head to malfunction, leading to data loss or corruption.

The two main challenges in hard drive head replacement are finding a compatible replacement head and aligning it precisely. The replacement process of read/write heads for each hard drive model is intricate due to their unique compatibility requirements. Furthermore, the head must be aligned with the platters to within microns.

Yes, there are risks. If not done correctly, the process can cause further damage to the hard drive. Therefore, it’s recommended to be performed by professionals in a controlled environment such as an ISO Certified Class 10 Cleanroom.

At PITS Global Data Recovery Services, we support a 99% success rate for data recovery from damaged hard drives after head replacement.

You should contact a professional data recovery service immediately if you notice any warning signs from your hard disk drive, such as unusual noises, frequent crashes, or error messages. You can contact us at PITS Global Data Recovery Services by filling out the form on our website or at 855-967-3984.