The laptop that suddenly wants to be a desktop


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  1. palmtree5

    palmtree5 Sunny Vacation Supporter! Moderator

    So yesterday I was using my laptop on battery and it got down to 6% for a long time (like 10 or 15 minutes) then it dropped to 1%. Now it tells me that it's plugged in but not charging. Booting while on battery goes well for maybe a minute then it shuts off.

    This same laptop also starts revving the fan up whenever I move it a certain way while it's on (not sure what caused that). Whenever this happens, the computer seems to slow down and sometimes (usually if I'm running Windows at the time) freeze up.

    Things I've tried (battery):
    Leaving it off and plugged in for the entire day

    Things I've tried (fan):
    Taking the computer apart in order to access the fan to use a can of air to clean it out

    Not sure what's going on with it

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  2. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Well-Known Member Contributor

    not sure about the fan but it seems the battery is fried. lithium batteries over so much age have a little 'brain' in them that after so many charge/recharge cycles it will self-kill any attempt at recharging it. sometimes letting the power drain too far causes this issue--this used to plague tons of Dell laptop users, as this was a known issue. i even got an old Dell Latitude D610 who's previously working battery has self-killed after remaining dead and idle for so many days (it now displays the '1-3-5' flashing on the LED gauge on the battery itself, which is an error code for 'replace pack')

    if i am not mistakened, the reason for putting the electronics in there is due to the laptop battery fires specifically from Dell laptops. an aged lithium cell can be a ticking bomb and charging a dead one is also bad. after the battery fires, they decided to put electronics in there which are designed to make an older or dead battery incapable of being recharged--even if it is still good. the cycle limit is usually 300 charges from a dead battery, or i a battery pack has been drained to a certain pack voltage.
  3. Hadron

    Hadron Well-Known Member Contributor

    How old is the battery?

    I had a weird experience a few years back: 2 batteries for my then work laptop (standard and extended, so not the same hardware batch), and between 14 and 15 months old both just failed. I reckoned it was the charging controllers that failed - there had been no loss of capacity, then they just refused to charge and the laptop reported battery problems (some error lights).

    Of course the batteries had 12 month warranties. :(

    To be fair to Dell, the replacements worked just fine for the rest of the lifetime of the laptop.

    I hope you haven't got something similar here. I'm really telling the story just to say that I have met laptop batteries that just fail abruptly.

    Edit: Ah, ninja'd by Nick with similar experience. Funnily mine was a Dell d420.
  4. palmtree5

    palmtree5 Sunny Vacation Supporter! Moderator

    I've had the laptop for like 16 or 17 months and the battery came with it
  5. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Well-Known Member Contributor

    1 to 2 years is pretty much it for a laptop battery. especially one which has been allowed to drain to 0%. i advise to never let any lithium ion battery drain below 25%
    palmtree5 likes this.
  6. palmtree5

    palmtree5 Sunny Vacation Supporter! Moderator

    Ok really strange but my battery is now showing as fully charged. I had pulled the battery in order to check the model number and now it shows as charged :confused:
  7. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Well-Known Member Contributor

    does it run off the battery? my old Dell (running Mandriva Linux) will show both. either 0% charging or 'fully charged' but if i pull the plug it instantly shuts off. battery light of course flashes the 1-3-5 code either way
  8. palmtree5

    palmtree5 Sunny Vacation Supporter! Moderator

    Yes, it runs off of the battery if unplugged
  9. nickdalzell

    nickdalzell Well-Known Member Contributor

    hmm. maybe it just got overheated? would explain your fan running and all
  10. CharlzO

    CharlzO Well-Known Member

    yeah, if you haven't yet, try to clear out any dust in the vents, especially around the power area of the laptop. I've had some that have gotten so clogged up, they would drastically heat up, shut off at times, and just be miserable.
  11. Dngrsone

    Dngrsone Well-Known Member

    I have seen bad bricks do this-- the wiring starts to break down so it pretends to work, but it isn't providing enough voltage to actually charge the battery.
  12. palmtree5

    palmtree5 Sunny Vacation Supporter! Moderator

    FYI, if you read the OP, I've already tried that

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