Inspiron 4000 - No power

Posted on 2007-11-29
Last Modified: 2013-11-17
I have a Dell Inspiron 4000 laptop that is not getting any power. I have 2 power cords and they both do the same thing: If I plug them into the wall or UPS first, the green light comes on. As soon as I plug it into the laptop, the green light turns off and the laptop does nothing. Anybody know why? This happened all of a sudden yesterday morning. Before that, it was fine.
Question by:Tharo_Systems
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LVL 88

Expert Comment

ID: 20373904
Try removing everything from the Laptop first, battery, CD Drive, RAM and Harddisk, then reconnect it to the power and check if it works. If yes, add the other items one by one to check what is causing this. If it doesn't work with everything removed, take the laptop apart and check if all internal cables and adapters are connected properly. It may also be necessary to resolder the the plug for the powersupply.

Author Comment

ID: 20374490
I already tried removing everything. Same results. I didn't take the whole thing apart though. I can't imagine that something came loose. This laptop has been in a docking station since it was delivered several years ago. It doesn't get moved. I will give it a shot. My only thought is that there is an electrical short somewhere in it since the power supplies both immediately cut off after connected to it. Thanks for the suggestion.
LVL 88

Accepted Solution

rindi earned 125 total points
ID: 20374659
If it can't b repaired through my above suggestion, then you need at least a new mainboard. I don't think it would be worth repairing then as the notebook is too old and a mainboard probably too expensive.
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Assisted Solution

g8kbv earned 125 total points
ID: 20382376
Sounds very much like a dead short somewhere after the "power in" jack on the PC itself, as you've tried two lead/adapters.   Try the Mk1 "Sniff" test.   Pick it up, and sniff it's vents.  If somthing smells burnt, it probably is!

You could try to run it with no battery fitted too, it should still power up (if it's getting power from the lead)   If it does, let it finish booting, then shut it down, saves more confusion later.

Of course, by the sound of it you are not using a battery anyway.  If that is the case, try fitting a charged battery, see if the thing starts up then.   If so, there are ways (very careful ways) to power a laptop externaly via the battery port, but that's another subject alltogether.

Make sure no one has (accidentaly) tipped any tea, coffee, beer, paper clips, or worst of all coke! into the PC, Suprising as it may seem most makers do not seal the boards against damp.

It may be recoverable, but from past experience (I've managed to rescue several "wet" laptops) you always end up with something that stays dead, more often than not, part of the battery or power system.  But at least you can pull the hard drive, and use that as a second drive in a USB caddy on another PC if you *Need* to get some data off it.

If that happens, keep the HD and RAM, and sell the rest as spairs on eBlag.  (sell the RAM seperatly if you don't want it, you'll get more money to cover cost of new PC, than if you leave it in the thing.)  Of course, you might just find another mainboard for the same model PC, but you take a risk that there is something wrong with that too.



Author Closing Comment

ID: 31411664
I don't have an additional battery to test with. I don't think it's the power port, because when plugged into the docking station, it still does not get any power. I think I will just ebay it like you suggested. Thanks!
LVL 88

Expert Comment

ID: 20382964
Your welcome

Expert Comment

ID: 20383896
Thanks for that...

Sadly, though I hate to just chuck things away when they fail, sometimes you just have to say Ho hum, and start over.  At least sticking it on eBlag, and being honnest about why, you'll get something for it, and it may help someone else with say a bad screen.

If you let it go with the Hard Disk, remember to first take it out, attatch it to another PC as a second (slave) disk, and remove all your personal and other identifying data.   Or just keep it as a second drive as suggested earlier.

Have a good weekend.


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