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Imagine that you go to turn on your computer, only to find that it’s completely unresponsive. Or that the power is on, but nothing happens How are you going to get your work done?

Anyone who’s operated one of these programmable machines for any length of time knows that hardware and software failures are bound to occur — and usually at the worst possible time.

“But it’s not all doom and gloom,” said Mike Cruz, who founded The PC Teks with his wife, Maria, in March 2011. The PC Teks is a computer-repair services firm at 3825 Mission Ave. in Oceanside. “Many people who have been told to go out and purchase a new computer have come to us, and we’ve made them work again for a fraction of what it would have cost to replace their current system.”

Ron Caruthers, CEO of Ducerus: Your Total College Solutions, agrees. “Mike has been working on our computers for years. I have yet to encounter a problem that he can’t fix. Most recently, he repaired a computer that was completely smashed and retrieved all of the data for a fraction of what I would have paid elsewhere.”

Cruz, a former Marine from Camp Pendleton and a self-described “natural-born tinkerer,” said that many breakdowns are due to hard-drive failure or malicious software that makes unauthorized changes to a computer. Other common problems, he said, include cracked or defective screens, liquid spills and poor or slow performance.

At no cost to the customer, The PC Teks will conduct a thorough diagnostic analysis of computer problems or malfunctions, Cruz said. He added that some problems are more complex and require additional time to correctly diagnose, but that most repairs average between one and two days to complete.

“We do more than just swap out parts,” said Cruz, as he demonstrated a repaired computer that he believed was shipped by the manufacturer with a defect. “We looked very closely at the system and found what the hidden flaw was and fixed it.”

As prices for some laptops have become more affordable and warranties have become less generous, many people are inclined to believe that the cost of the repair is more than the product is worth. But that’s not always the case, said Cruz, who often recommends a simple upgrade or some preventive maintenance to avoid future problems and to help prolong a computer’s life.

Wishing to distinguish The PC Teks from the competition, Cruz said that he prefers to rely on client referrals, rather than marketing gimmicks. With an eye towards becoming a bigger part of North County, Cruz said he strives to offer the best pricing and service, along with a friendly overall experience.

“We’re fair in our pricing and honest with our customers,” Cruz said. “All repairs are done on-site, by me, so customers know where their computer is at all times — and they can call my cellphone if there are any questions.”

The PC Teks offers hardware, software, network setup and repair services at the store or in the comfort of your home. Active-duty members of the military and their dependents — as well as police, fireman and seniors — can receive a 10 percent discount on the cost of a repair.

The PC Teks is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Find more at or call 760-433-2731.

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