Mysterious Laptop Problem

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bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
Help!

I'm posting this from my son's computer because, while using my laptop, I got a dialog box warning me that my battery was running low and I should switch to the power cord (in the wall) - except, I was plugged into the wall (I never run it on just the battery).

Then, after a few minutes, the computer announced that it was going into "hibernate" mode, and shut down.

How do I fix this (if it's fixable)?
 

danmpem

Puritan Board Junior
It could be a few things. The ones that come into my heard are the ac jack in your computer may be broken or your power cable might be bad. Remove the batter and plug in your power cable. Do you get a power light on your laptop?
 

Southern Presbyterian

Puritan Board Doctor
Sounds like there might be a short in the power cord. I experienced the same thing a few months back. Do you have another cord you can experiment with?
 

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
It could be a few things. The ones that come into my heard are the ac jack in your computer may be broken or your power cable might be bad. Remove the batter and plug in your power cable. Do you get a power light on your laptop?
I'll try that and get back to you.
 

fredtgreco

Vanilla Westminsterian
Staff member
It is likely the power cord. Our associate pastor had an identical problem. There was a problem with the brick in the adapter.
 

VictorBravo

Administrator
Staff member
It is likely the power cord. Our associate pastor had an identical problem. There was a problem with the brick in the adapter.
Agreed. I've had that problem a couple of times before. If you have a multimeter, you could check the output voltage of the adapter. I'd bet that it is zero.
 

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
Is the power adapter brick warm after you have it plugged in for a few minutes?
By "power adapter brick," I assume you mean that thick square thingy in the middle of the power cord. And, no: after the computer went into "hibernate" mode and shut down, I happened to notice that it was cool, if not cold.
 

Ivan

Pastor
Is the power adapter brick warm after you have it plugged in for a few minutes?
By "power adapter brick," I assume you mean that thick square thingy in the middle of the power cord. And, no: after the computer went into "hibernate" mode and shut down, I happened to notice that it was cool, if not cold.
I'm sorry. I may be stating the obvious, but is the cord properly attached to the power adapter brick?
 

rjlynam

Puritan Board Sophomore
Yes, that's what I meant.

That is your problem. I see this all the time. Go to your local office supply store and see if you can acquire a universal power supply. Make sure you set it to the voltage level that is one higher than what your laptop requires. If it requires say 19.5 volts, use the 20 volts setting, etc, etc.

Or you could order a replacement from the laptop vendor. My view is they are overpriced.

The only problem I've had with the universal power supplies is the adapters are not always custom fitted to the laptop's design which causes them to come unplugged easily. But if the universal supply gets you back up and running, then you could still use it as a spare if you wanted to go with a vendor provided supply.

Hope this helps.
 

ReformedSinner

Puritan Board Freshman
People do not realize that laptop power cords are delicate, and I see people twisting, turning, and using the cords to tie a nod, etc. Don't do that, they do break.

As for the issue. If the power cord is plugged in (to the wall, the 'brick' and the machine) and still not working, it's time for a new cord.

I hope you're still under warranty and if yes quickly call them and get a free replacement. If not, I would still suggest buying the original manufacture cord. For one your power plug is most likely custom made, and other universal adapter is easily lose. For two, the power voltage is specific, setting it to generic number will harm your laptop in the long run (like overheating.)

Don't feel bad. I had to replace my Dell laptop power cord twice. One of the primary reason I am now a faithful Lenovo (ex IBM) laptop user.
 

Semper Fidelis

2 Timothy 2:24-25
Staff member
I didn't notice in any of the troubleshooting steps above if you confirmed that you're getting power to the wall outlet you are plugged into.

It's either:

1. No power to the wall outlet.
2. Bad cord.
3. Bad AC/DC converter.
4. Bad Notebook power supply.

You could probably take the brick to a radio shack and have them test to see if you're getting DC out the other end of the power supply.
 

Abd_Yesua_alMasih

Puritan Board Junior
I had the exact same problem last week.

However my solution might not be so helpful.

I plugged in my laptop. Working away and then it warned me battery was low and was going to hibernate. So... I checked if it was plugged in right. It was. No problem. Just no power light. I unplugged it took it to another room and tried again. Still didn't work. Took it to a third room and same problem. So I gave up and took it back to my room, put it back in the old multi box it had been in and went to call a friend. My cell phone also happened to be out of battery. So I plugged the recharger in next to the computer. Bingo everything worked again. Yay go cell phones.
 

danmpem

Puritan Board Junior
Yes, that's what I meant.

That is your problem. I see this all the time. Go to your local office supply store and see if you can acquire a universal power supply. Make sure you set it to the voltage level that is one higher than what your laptop requires. If it requires say 19.5 volts, use the 20 volts setting, etc, etc.

Or you could order a replacement from the laptop vendor. My view is they are overpriced.

The only problem I've had with the universal power supplies is the adapters are not always custom fitted to the laptop's design which causes them to come unplugged easily. But if the universal supply gets you back up and running, then you could still use it as a spare if you wanted to go with a vendor provided supply.

Hope this helps.
Getting a new/spare cable is a good idea. I would recommend getting it on ebay, just because, as mentioned above, it is a lot more expensive from any other retailer. The ones on are about $15-20. From anywhere else, they can be up to $150.
 

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
Yes, that's what I meant.

That is your problem. I see this all the time. Go to your local office supply store and see if you can acquire a universal power supply. Make sure you set it to the voltage level that is one higher than what your laptop requires. If it requires say 19.5 volts, use the 20 volts setting, etc, etc.

Or you could order a replacement from the laptop vendor. My view is they are overpriced.

The only problem I've had with the universal power supplies is the adapters are not always custom fitted to the laptop's design which causes them to come unplugged easily. But if the universal supply gets you back up and running, then you could still use it as a spare if you wanted to go with a vendor provided supply.

Hope this helps.
Getting a new/spare cable is a good idea. I would recommend getting it on ebay, just because, as mentioned above, it is a lot more expensive from any other retailer. The ones on are about $15-20. From anywhere else, they can be up to $150.
Yes, this is my second power cord to die on me since I got the laptop (Dell) about 5 or 6 years ago. Both cords are from Dell. Based on what you guys are saying, it's too bad I can't just schlep down to my local "power cord store" and get a new one. But, no - that would be too simple...

Guess I'll have to go crawling to Dell, since these things are so Dell-specific. The last (second) one I got cost me $70 or $80. Sheesh.

I should blame Bawb for all this...:lol:
 

danmpem

Puritan Board Junior
While Dell's power cable plugs are very unique, they are now made with universal power cables. Just make sure you have the right current/voltage & a power cable that comes with multiple plugs (including the Dell one) and you're all set.
 

fredtgreco

Vanilla Westminsterian
Staff member
While Dell's power cable plugs are very unique, they are now made with universal power cables. Just make sure you have the right current/voltage & a power cable that comes with multiple plugs (including the Dell one) and you're all set.
My last Dell (6 months ago) ran on an universal power cable, but would not charge with one. That was what Dell told me. I had a UPC with a Dell "adapter" and it woudl run AC but not charge the Dell.
 

danmpem

Puritan Board Junior
While Dell's power cable plugs are very unique, they are now made with universal power cables. Just make sure you have the right current/voltage & a power cable that comes with multiple plugs (including the Dell one) and you're all set.
My last Dell (6 months ago) ran on an universal power cable, but would not charge with one. That was what Dell told me. I had a UPC with a Dell "adapter" and it woudl run AC but not charge the Dell.
:think: Hmm, very interesting...
 

rjlynam

Puritan Board Sophomore
Give me the make, model number, and voltage requirement of the laptop and I'll see if I have any spares laying around in my dead laptop bin to send to ya.
 

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
Give me the make, model number, and voltage requirement of the laptop and I'll see if I have any spares laying around in my dead laptop bin to send to ya.
You must go through a lot of computer power cords! Actually, I think I'm going to use this as an excuse to get a new laptop; as I said, this one's about 6 years old. Thank you for your kind offer, though!
 

rjlynam

Puritan Board Sophomore
You're certainly welcome. Computers and I/T feed my family. Don't blame you for getting a new computer though. Blessings to you in your search for a new one !
 

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
You're certainly welcome. Computers and I/T feed my family. Don't blame you for getting a new computer though. Blessings to you in your search for a new one !
Any suggestions, in case I don't go the Dell route again? I don't do anything fancy with it; just general use.
 

rjlynam

Puritan Board Sophomore
You're certainly welcome. Computers and I/T feed my family. Don't blame you for getting a new computer though. Blessings to you in your search for a new one !
Any suggestions, in case I don't go the Dell route again? I don't do anything fancy with it; just general use.
I would go with a Gateway. Or a Lenovo. It's a rare day when I get one of these in to fix.
 
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