Friday, June 24, 2011

Simple ways to troubleshoot laptop battery problems

Laptops are a godsend for those who are always on the move, but they are heavily dependent on battery power.  Your laptop is nothing but a piece of hardware if the batteries are not functioning well enough. Most laptop users get frustrated when their laptop batteries get drained on a regular basis, and many mistakenly buy new batteries, only to go through the same problem as before.

Let’s take a look at some of the common laptop battery problems and check out some simple solutions for the same: 

Problem 1: When you plug in the adapter in the power outlet, the battery indicator on your laptop does not flash. When you switch on the laptop, the battery notifier displays Plugged In, Not Charging, or the battery charging indicator bars does not light up.

Problem Areas:
  • Battery Adapter
  • Laptop motherboard
  • System BIOS
  • Battery
You need to follow the isolation technique to diagnose the root problem. Remove the batteries and install them again and check if they are being charged when connected to the adapter.

Step 1:

Borrow a compatible adapter from your friend and connect it to your laptop. If the battery notifier indicates that the batteries are being charged, you can conclude that your adapter is faulty.

Solution: Replace the adapter.

Step 2:

If the batteries are not being charged after changing the adapter, then your DC power jack on your laptop may be loose or damaged. Go to Step 3 to verify if the DC power jack is not damaged.

Step 3: 

The laptop BIOS plays an important role in charging the batteries when the system is off. The BIOS contains information about the connected AC adapter and the installed battery pack. The information/values change in real-time in the Device Information section of your BIOS when you connect or disconnect the adapter. If the AC adapter is listed as “Unknown Device installed”, then you have to change the adapter.