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how to Troubleshooting a AC/DC Adapter problem and Laptop Power Connector




 Troubleshooting a AC/DC Adapter problem and Laptop Power Connector



Note that these steps correspond with decision points on the flowchart and are reached through the interactive diamond symbols. The text below cannot be read sequentially.

Is the laptop power LED lit? Laptops typically feature a row of LED's on the front which report the status of different laptop systems.There's an LED that should light when the AC adapter is plugged in, an LED that should show when the battery is accepting a charge, and an LED that lights when the power is on. Most laptops also include LEDs to show hard drive activity and when the wireless is powered on. Some brands put a light right in the power button to show the unit is powered up. At this step of the troubleshooting process, we're looking for the LED that confirms the battery is charging or that a good power supply is connected. When the laptop isn't turned on, these should be the only two LEDs lit.

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Does the LED wink if you wiggle the power cord? Once you've located the LED that monitors the status of the AC adapter or tells you whether or not the battery is getting charged, try wiggling the power cord. If the LED blinks on and off as you wiggle the cord, it means you have an intermittent short or open circuit, and the laptop isn't likely to get the power it need unless the cord is in just the right position and you don't breath on it. So the next step is to troubleshoot whether the problem is frayed conductors in the power cord, a broken solder joint or tab inside the laptop's power port. The common failure point for the cord is right where it enters the injection molded section that holds the metal connector tip. It's the injection molded part that you hold when pushing in or pulling out the connector. If moving the cord very slightly winks the LED, so slightly that there's little chance the movement is transmitted to the connector, then the problem is almost certainly a frayed wire right where it's molded into the connector.

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Does the laptop beep multiple times? Laptop computers start up with a Power On Self Test (POST) procedure, just like PCs. The test is carried out by the Basic I/O System (BIOS) which is in sole control of the laptop until the operating system takes over high level operations. If a failure is detected during the POST test, it will normally be reported by the BIOS as a beep code. Make a note of the series of beeps, which will depend on the BIOS and the laptop manufacturer, and then use your favorite Internet search engine to search for your specific laptop model with the key phrase "beep codes."
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