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Old 09-02-07, 08:04 PM   #1
DXchulo
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What's wrong with my computer?

I've had a Dell laptop for about a year or two. I've been having some kind of power problem. I don't know (nor do I care to know) too much about computers, so bear with me.

It all started out when my computer would show the little battery icon when it was actually plugged in to the wall. I figured my AC adapter was bad because if I played around with the position of the cord I could get it to work.

This is probably dumb, but I put off getting a new adapter for a while. In fact, it's coming in the mail on Tuesday. The problem has been getting worse and worse. Well, tonight I was running on battery and my screen was flickering. This has happened a little in the past, but I always thought it came from switching from battery to plugged in and back.

Now my screen has a little black spot in the lower left corner. I'm not sure what happened, but somehow things are getting hot and there's a strange smell going on. What's going on here? Have I screwed things up by not fixing it earlier? Have I had a bigger problem than a bad adapter all along?
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Old 09-02-07, 08:08 PM   #2
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I'd suspect a bad battery. They can overheat when they're bad. Try running it with the battery out, plugged in, and see if you still have the same heat issues.
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Old 09-02-07, 08:10 PM   #3
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Sounds like what you have on your hands... is a Dell.
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Old 09-02-07, 08:13 PM   #4
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My laptop was doing the exact same thing. A new AC adapter fixed it.

As for the black spot on the screen, that's a little weird. It could be the battery or the hard drive, depending on its placement... does your fan run a lot? What part of the computer is getting hot? (Check the bottom of the laptop.)
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Old 09-03-07, 01:25 AM   #5
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The little black spot is a dead pixel.
Google how to get rid of them.
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Old 09-03-07, 02:01 AM   #6
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IIRC, Dell batteries are only warrantied for a year, so if you have any issues, I'd recommend a new battery.

This applies to almost any appliance that has batteries -- after 2-3 years, almost any battery will lost a significant majority of charge it held when it came from the factory.
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Old 09-03-07, 04:21 AM   #7
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Dell, chances are it's the adapter socket on the back of the computer, we get 3 a week in the shop. If the Power Supply & battery don't do the trick then look at replacing the power jack.

The black, as mentioned above is dead pixels... CPR might help.
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Old 09-03-07, 06:08 AM   #8
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Last year there was a huge recall on Dell batteries. They were known to overheat and can fry additional components inside the pc.

Check this website to see if your laptop qualifies.

https://www.dellbatteryprogram.com/
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Old 09-03-07, 06:57 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by michiganboy View Post
Last year there was a huge recall on Dell batteries. They were known to overheat and can fry additional components inside the pc.

Check this website to see if your laptop qualifies.

https://www.dellbatteryprogram.com/
I've actually seen that, but mine isn't on the list. Thanks anyway, though.
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Old 09-03-07, 06:59 AM   #10
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Now my screen won't show anything. When I first turn on the computer I get the "Dell" screen, but then nothing. The computer stays on, but not the screen.

Isn't this fun?
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Old 09-04-07, 11:38 AM   #11
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Are you able to get any video if you plug a monitor into the VGA port?
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Old 09-05-07, 09:44 AM   #12
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Luckily for me, the computer's still under warranty. A Dell guy is supposed to come replace the motherboard today. Hopefully everything will turn out fine.
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Old 09-05-07, 09:46 AM   #13
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sounds like a bad 7th sfetzer valve to me.
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Old 09-05-07, 10:57 AM   #14
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Dell is known for having issues with the socket on the back of the computer breaking where the power adapter plugs in, exactly as Stacey said. The issue you described would fit this suggestion.
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