Question about Toshiba Tecra A5-S416 Notebook

2 Answers

Abnormally Switches off

I have a Toshiba Tecra A5-S416 laptop - it used to work fine, but now when I switch it on, it suddenly goes off after a few seconds... These are the observations I have made...

1) When connected power connector, external power indicator light on notebook glows (green) for less than a second and goes off.
2) After several attempts of unplugging power jack and replugging, the external power indicator light and the battery charge light (which is orange) glows for about a second or sometimes for about 5 seconds and goes off.
3) When switched on (without power jack plugged in), switches on for about 8 seconds (maximum, else for about 1-2 seconds) - sometimes shows XP boot screen and goes off (but within 8 seconds)
4) If I plug in the power, it will not switch on - Even if I remove power plug - have to remove the battery and reconnect it to switch on (without power)...

What could this problem be? I checked with another power adapter, same problem... It seems like the motherboard to me.


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  • Asif Anver Nov 10, 2007

    Thanks Cyryl,

    Really appreciate a prompt response, which is enough for a rating :)

    There does not seem to be any short in the battery as I get the same observations without the battery connected...

    I shall try the BIOS part - its going to be tough with the laptop switching off fast...

    Will keep you updated...

  • Asif Anver Nov 11, 2007

    Hi - thanks so much for the prompt response... I have tried with another power supply (similar, Toshiba) but faced the same problem :(

    Will keep you updated about this once i try to get into CMOS tomorrow - by the way, there is no warranty - it expired a year back.

    Thanks again and hope u enjoyed your caffeine :)


  • Asif Anver Nov 12, 2007

    Hi Cyryl...

    Thanks so much for the quick response :) I tried playing around with the BIOS - not that many options though - however, I did manage to reset to setup defaults, tried changing a few settings, etc... Still no luck - so it all comes down to the motherboard (like you said)...

    I have managed to strip the laptop from all its parts, remove the motherboard (no physical damages or burn marks) anyway, I put it back together as well... Leaving devices like WiFi Card, modem, Hard Drive disconnected switched it on but still no luck -

    Well, its either a replacement board or a new laptop (I found a replacement board in ebay, quite cheap, but its used so I dont want to burn my fingers purchasing that one...) - ill simply wait a few weeks and purchase a new one :( my wallet already seems light... :)

    Thanks a million and well, the problem is nothing else but the board (like you stated) - Keep up the good work - really appreciate this.




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Try to get ur on/off switch replaced ( Laptop Power Switch )
it may be sticking

try and mail ur response @

Posted on Mar 27, 2008

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I'm afraid that this sounds like either a fuse, capacitors or a blown relay on the motherboard. Otherwise, it could also have something to do with some kind of problem involving the battery.

First and foremost, take the battery out of the system before doing anything else. See what happens without the battery in the laptop. If the problem seems to be solved by doing so by some chance, then you probably have a short in the battery itself. (Which would explain the issue.)

Beyond that, the most I can advise on is checking the power settings in your BIOS as quickly as you possibly can before it shuts off. See if there is anything in particular that might have an effect on the system's operation. I would disable any power-saving features and such... Just to cut those unnecessary variables out of the equation.

See if you can get it into the BIOS...and see if it still shuts down once it is in the BIOS. (No doubt it will... It wouldn't make ANY sense if it didn't, now would it?)

Try those things for now... But do NOT rate me if this does not fix your laptop. Remember that we are here to TRY our best to provide a solution. This is not meant to be a solution.

This is meant to find a cause for the problem. Only THEN can we give any kind of solid solution or conclusion.

Either way, I ask that you wait to rate me until after we follow these steps and I give you my conclusions. If the laptop is fragged, I ask that you give me a fair rating based on my attempt. Not based on the fact that I could not fix your laptop.

Remember that hardware failure is NOT OUR FAULT. We tried to help either way.

Thanks and let me know what happens. K?


Posted on Nov 10, 2007

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  • Cory Kielion
    Cory Kielion Nov 10, 2007

    Excellent. I'll keep watching. I get an email when this thread receives a response. Might take me a couple hours to see the response, but I spend a lot of time at my computer. :)

    I'm curious to see what happens here. If my old Tecra is any indication of the newer ones, I can safely say that navigating the BIOS is kind of a pain in the rear. Good luck with that.

    But I'll be honest with you... If this doesn't help the issue, I'm afraid that the motherboard's power systems have most likely fragged themselves. Not much you can do without opening the laptop itself at that point, really.

    I HATE opening laptops. They're such a pain in the butt. ESPECIALLY Toshibas.

    Let me know. :)


  • Cory Kielion
    Cory Kielion Nov 10, 2007

    Wait a minute... You know what?

    My brain must have stopped working properly about 24 hours ago.

    I didn't take into consideration the power supply itself! Is it
    external? It should be one of those power supplies that has a box with
    a cord on either end, right?

    What you might consider is that THAT could be the problem. If you have
    an extra adapter or you can find another one, then I would make sure to
    try it out and see if the adapter might be the problem.

    Wow... Where the hell was my brain?!? *laughs*

    Sorry about that.

    Anyway... If we suspect that the power supply (adapter) might be the
    issue, you can contact Toshiba if your system is still under warranty
    and they would most likely send you another one.

    Otherwise you could but one of those really nice multi-model power
    adapters from your nearest electronics outlet (such as Best Buy or
    CompUSA) or office supply store. (Such as Staples.) The one I have is
    really nice, but it costs quite a bit. I got mine for free from
    working in the tech dept at Staples. :P

    Here is the one I
    have. It has a wall outlet plug as well as a swappable car plugin.
    Very long cable on it.. Has many different attachments for a large
    number of different laptops and they're always making new attachments
    you can buy as more models of laptops come out.

    But it retails for like $130 last I checked... Ugh.

    Anyway... That's just one example. You can find others out there that may work for a much lower price I'm sure.

    OR ebay is always an option to find a replacement for the one that came with the laptop of course. :)

    NOW I have given you complete information. I'm gonna go get caffeine.
    That's been missing all week and I haven't felt quite right since.

    I'll be watching. :)


  • Cory Kielion
    Cory Kielion Nov 11, 2007

    Ah. I was afraid of that.

    So at this point, I was heading (inadvertently) in the right direction. If multiple adapters for it are having the same effect, then it's obviously not the power adapter.

    This leaves the power systems in the laptop itself. (Which is more or less considerable as the motherboard.)

    You're basically stuck with one of two options here.

    1.) Start looking for spare motherboards on ebay. It's a complex operation pulling a laptop apart. Hope you have a LOT of time and even more patience as it requires a LOT of attention to detail.

    2.) Spend the extra few bucks and start lookin' into a new laptop.

    I've done motherboard replacements for laptops using motherboards parted out from laptops that had issues like broken LCD screen, etc. Bought them on ebay and such. It's a valid solution as long as the seller guarantees the product against DOA. (Dead On Arrival.) It can also save a bit of money.

    Otherwise... If you don't want to spend the time slogging through pulling apart the unit and figuring out all the dynamics of the assembly, replacing the board and eventually putting it all back together... OR you just plain don't feel like you're qualified to take on such a project...

    ...then how about that new laptop I KNOW you've been eying for the last couple of weeks? Hmm? *laughs* Sorry. Can't help you pay for it. I'm saving for one of my own. Hehehe...

    Let me know how it goes when you go to fighting with the BIOS. This is most likely going to be the last-ditch effort to see if we can affect the system's current operational status.

    Good luck, man. Keep me posted. :P




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