Question about IBM ThinkPad R30 2656 Notebook

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When I power on my laptop it be's a white screen and then goes black after a few seconds. I can hear the sounds and everything else works normal. I'm confused about the problem.

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You have a failed backlight or an inverter issue. Look at the screen from about an inch away and check if you see a dim image. If you do, it's the backlight only. For a replacement backlight, see http://www.lcdparts.net/CCFL3D.aspx (look for the Lenovo/IBM and your screen size). To replace the backlight, take the screen away from the bezel (sometimes it is held with screws) Remove the tape, and the frame holding the parts together and separate the reflector (make a note of how things are put together) then you have to Dremel (or use another rotary tool) to remove the plastic to get the backlight out. (They are often molded into the frame.) Then put in the new backlight and reassemble everything. lcdparts.net has some specific laptop repairs (http://www.lcdparts.net/howto/default.aspx) but for an overview: http://www.inventgeek.com/Projects/BacklightFix/overview.aspx


To check the inverter, open up the screen section of the case and remove the shielding. The inverter is a board usually near the bottom of the screen Look for any scorch marks or bulging or damaged capacitors. (Sometimes other parts will fail on this part but these can be spotted easily. Capacitors look like cylinders on a tripod.)

If you borrow (or have a) high-end multimeter (able to measure high frequencies - 50 kHz) or an oscilloscope, hold the multimeter probes a fraction of an inch apart about an inch above the board and power up the TV. If you see a 1 or an actual value, you have a good inverter. If you see a reading near 0, the board is bad or the multimeter can't resolve the frequency.

In either case, you can buy a replacement inverter for $50-150 and just do a simple swap. Disconnect all of the wires (connections are similar to molex and ribbon cables in a computer) and remove board (a few screws usually). Connect the cables to the new inverter. (If you google backlight inverter replacement, you'll find videos and text descriptions.) Note the part number on the board, including the Rev number, and order the exact one (shopjimmy.com or lcdparts.net are good starting points). Universal inverters do exist but can result in reversed controls (up to lower the brightness). Replacing individual parts on the board is cheaper but more prone to not tracking down all of the bad parts.


I hope this helps.

Cindy Wells

Posted on Jul 13, 2010

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