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Laptop Won't Power On

Posted on 2014-02-24
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Last Modified: 2014-02-26
I'm working on a friend's Toshiba Satellite A505. When they first brought it to me, I couldn't get it to power on. The A/C adapter had a little tear in the cord but after a while, I was finally able to get it to power on. It must not have been charging or eventually stopped because it powered off after about 10 minutes. Since then, I have not got it to power on at all. I had them purchase a new A/C adapter, thinking that was the issue but it still doesn't work. Whenever, I plug in the adapter and try it, the battery light on the front just flashes. I've also tried it with the battery removed but I'm not getting anywhere. What else can I check?

Thanks
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Question by:itmoonlighter
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16 Comments
 
LVL 98

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39884454
That machine dates from 2009, so it is not new but not ancient either.

Disconnect the adapter and remove the battery and let sit overnight (even 24 hours if you can). Then plug it in without the battery. I assume the new adapter is the Toshiba replacement adapter.

See if it starts after the above.

If no, call a local service shop and see if it might be a motherboard problem.
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LVL 25

Expert Comment

by:Tony Giangreco
ID: 39884456
It sounds like a possible blown power supply. Just to make sure it's not something simple, I'd re-seat the memory chips, and pull yte hard drive. then plug in the power adaptor and see if you get a post or "no boot device found"  on the monitor.
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Author Comment

by:itmoonlighter
ID: 39884457
Yes, the adapter is the replacement one so it should work. There is a light on the front that has a power cable icon but it doesn't light up or anything when I plug it in. Maybe it only lights up once it's powered on but I'm not sure.
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Author Comment

by:itmoonlighter
ID: 39884499
I reseated the memory and removed the hard drive. Still just get the flashing battery light when I try powering it on. If it was a power supply issue, would it even flash that light?
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LVL 98

Accepted Solution

by:
John Hurst earned 2000 total points
ID: 39884503
If the power supply was dead, probably not. If it bad (not dead), it might.

More and more it looks like a motherboard failure (perhaps the circuitry coming from the supply).

That is why I suggest a shop to look at it to see if they can determine whether it is even worth fixing.
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LVL 12

Expert Comment

by:Gregory Miller
ID: 39884506
before letting it sit overnight. Remove the AC cord. Remove the battery. Hold the power button for 20 solid seconds. Plug in only the AC. Try powering it on.
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LVL 18

Expert Comment

by:web_tracker
ID: 39884691
the battery led flashes when plugged in, I assume the battery is plugged in as well. It may be attempting to charge the battery, which may be an indication that the charging circuit is working fine. The  problem is mostlikely a bad mother board. Is this the right ac adapter for this laptop, ie the voltage and ampherage are the same as the original ac adapter? You can find out the requirements of the laptop written in the battery compartment or on a sticker on the bottom of the laptop. Make sure it matches the requirements. The wattage does not necessarily have to match as the laptop will draw the watts as required. If this is an exact match to the original ac adapater, you are looking at either a bad power on button or a bad mother board, or something else is shorting out the system. Remove the keyboard, hard drive, memory, optical drive, and the wireless card then try powering it on with only the ac adapater, battery removed and then power on with battery in place.  Any change in the led when powered on? remove the power button bezel, is there  a power button below or is it built into the bezel itself? If the power button is below try pushing the power button under the bezel.  If no change in led status you mostlikely need to replace the mobo. Do you hear the fan spin up at any time then shut off?
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39885355
here my laptop troubleshooting guide, i hope it helps you :
- remove all external devices
- if no display - test with an external monitor
- test if it runs from battery alone, or from AC alone
- test also with a known good battery !
***some laptops have a reset button - if you have one use it!
- remove battery and AC adaptor, hold power button for 20 sec, connect AC and reboot --> any display ? if NO -->
- disconnect all disk and cd drives, battery , and other cards and peripherals, leave only 1 ram stick
- boot -->any display ?
-if you can access the bios battery, remove the battery, AC, and bios battery for a minute to reset the bios
or test it, it should read 3 V
*** you can test the disk on another pc, if you like !

===>>you can test if the mobo works outside the casing, connected to power and external video  !

you can also remove and reseat the video plug - it sometimes comes loose

for troubleshooting the display (LCD) problems : http://www.lcdparts.net/howto/symptom.aspx
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Author Comment

by:itmoonlighter
ID: 39885833
I unplugged the adapter and battery and held the power button for 20-30 seconds and then plugged the adapter back in but didn't get anything. Nothing lights up and no fans kick on. My guess would also be a motherboard because I would think it would work without the battery, while plugged into the adapter. I don't have a similar motherboard laying around. Is there a way I can test it to make sure? I would hate to have them buy a new motherboard and then it's the power supply.
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LVL 98

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39885845
The reason I suggested shop is that they should be able to determine what the problem is. It does sound like motherboard. The computer is not in any way new, so it may be time for a new computer. See what the owner thinks.
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39886242
did you test without disk and cd drive, and 1 ram stick?
0
 

Author Comment

by:itmoonlighter
ID: 39886246
I have not, I'll try that tonight.
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LVL 18

Expert Comment

by:web_tracker
ID: 39886774
If you can remove the keyboard as well. If someone accidentally shorted out the keyboard by spilling something on it. It may short out the computer. I seen that happen before, and my customer ended up having to replace only the faulty keyboard instead of a mother board. To replace the motherboard if you can still buy it, may be more expensive than what the computer is worth.
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LVL 93

Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 39888085
and of course - if it still does not show a screen  - it is likely a dead motherboard or cpu
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LVL 98

Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 39889590
@itmoonlighter - Thank you. I trust your friend is OK with repair or replacement.
0
 

Author Comment

by:itmoonlighter
ID: 39889746
Yes, I let them know and they decided spending that amount on a 5+ year old computer probably wasn't worth it. Thanks for your help.
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