Question about PC Laptops
Dell Insperion B120 several years old. Never used for internet, never ran well on battery alone, mostly used it with adaptor plug. Kept it dusted out, & defraged properly, now it won't power up--all black, no lights. I took it apart, dusted, removed dusted & replaced battery. When I put everything back, it powered up for a moment or two then back to all black. Could this be as simple as buying a new battery for it, if I do & it doesn't work do stores take them back? Please advise & thanks!!
If you are in the US, you can buy a digital
multimeter for <$20 at auto parts stores, Radio Shack and others. If you are
in the are where Harbor Freight stores are located, I have bought a few
serviceable little meters for $3.
These aren't precision instruments but they are very nearly as good as those I have that cost far more.
They come with somewhat intelligible Chinglish instructions and with it, you can learn a couple of things about your problem.
If the charger is plugged into AC, you can check to see if any voltage is available at the computer end of the cable.
If it is rated at (for example) 12 volts, you could find anything from 13 to over 20 volts and this would mean the charger can do something.
Your battery pack could have 2 to 4 contacts on it on the end that plugs into the computer.
With the meter set to 20 volts DC, you can check between all of the connections, two at a time, and if (again, an example) it is rated at 12 VDC, you should see at least that amount and it could be 13-14 volts depending on the kind of cells it uses.
I would do this test after sadly watching the LEDs all fade away since this means the battery is pretty much exhausted.
A 12 volt pack removed after this will probably show several volts and climb while you watch it but that only means it is sick, sick, sick.
If you find no two points that show some kind of voltage, an internal thermal fuse may have blown and if you aren't a techie, you will probably need a new pack.
So for a few dollars, you can gain knowledge as to what it is you really need; a battery pack or a charger and you will find other uses for the meter at home.
Posted on Dec 31, 2008
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