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I had a co-worker bring me his Asus A55a laptop that would not power on. The problem turned out to be the small power control board right under the power button. The parts was only $15.00 plus shipping. The local geek shop wanted $180.00 ( 3 weeks turn around time).
That is a bad situation to be in out of warranty; There is no easy quick or cheap fix for this; This would be something for a Local PC Shop to fix unless you are savvy enough, and have the precision hand of a surgeon. You can conceivably fix it yourself.
Long story short; You are correct; My first guess is a broken solder point somewhere on the motherboard or Power Supply;
Power Supplies are a cheap fix, but if you do not find the problem in the Power Supply you will have to replace the motherboard.
Most local PC shops will suggest buying a new laptop because the cost of repair if it's the motherboard is nearly equal to a new laptop.
Find an alternative source of power to test the laptop in other words eliminate the AC Adapter and battery from the equation; Test using a different AC Adapter only, see if the Laptop boots up; If it does, it's more than likely either a bad battery or bad AC Power Adapter.
It's a shot in the dark but the Power Jack may be loose and when power is applied to it the heat buildup may secure the connection to the motherboard which allows you to boot. (Although this would be a first time explanation regarding this) Usually power jack issues are intermittent start ups. Replacing of the power jack; cheap, you can buy the part yourself; again if you are good with soldering you can fix it yourself as well; You will have to disassemble the laptop completely to do this. This repair is expensive at a local PC shop in excess of $100-200 or more.
A motherboard replacement can cost in excess of $300 or more at a local PC shop.
Hope this helps or at least guides you in the right direction.
IF YOU TAKE OFF THE STARTER AND BRING IT TO YOUR LOCAL SMALL ENGINE REPAIR SHOP I THINK YOU WILL FIND IT IS A CHEAP FIX, DOING THIS JOB (REWINDING OR LOADING) IS JUST A LITTLE BIT TRICKY AND HAVING A PRO DO IT SHOULD COST ABOUT 20 BUCKS. IT'S ABOUT TAKING IT OFF THE MOTOR WHAT SAVES YOU THE MONEY = COOL CHEAP FIX ..
JAY THE POOL PUMP GUY IN LONGWOOD FL
Unless you are good with a bunch of body tools, you don't want to fix it yourself. I wouldn't take it to the dealer, there are plenty of body shops around that can fix it. But most will tell you it is not worth fixing. You might hang around the body shop at the dealer and make friends with the guy, He has all the paints right there, then drop the question on him. How much to fix this scratch? I'm afraid that a rattle can just doesn't do it. Hope this helps.
You need a special tool to fix timing problems. You'll need a timing gun. Most cheap garage shop has this tool. Just bring your car to a cheap shop and have your car properly timed. This is only a 15 minute job. I hope this helps.
Most laptops graphic cards are built right to motherboard. You can probably bring it to computer repair shop and they can solder new capacitors on it. But they don't make them seperate where a person could swap it out.