Same thing happened to me. I just took a screwdriver and tried to scrape all of the corrosion - I was able to get enough off for it to work. If that didn't work, I would've gone ahead and put the door in a glass of coke and leave it in there for a day.
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Answering a question with a question may solve your problem. The batteries you took out of the flash unit were they dead and how long had they been sitting in the flash? If the batteries had no life left and had been sitting for some time it's possible that there is corrosion in the battery compartment. That corrosion will look like white powder or could even be black. You will need to get that out of there and clean the contacts, don't get that stuff on you or blow in the compartment in case you have it come up into your face or eyes. If the compartment is clean it's a good possibility that the batteries were installed incorrectly all it takes is one to be out of sequence and it wont' work.
That white powder is battery acid, if you have been handling the batteries wash your hands well with soap and water it's very corrosive. Dispose of the batteries and start cleaning the battery contacts. I have used long swabs and rubbing alcohol to get the bulk of it off, clean the complete area then use a new eraser on the end of a pencil, make sure the rubber dust you create is cleaned out as well from the battery compartment. I have used a hand blower with the battery compartment facing down. Don't blow in it with your breath some of the material may enter your eyes. Again it's corrosive take precaution not to get that white powder or the alcohol wet swab on anything because it will eat it away. The contacts must be clean for the battery to make connection, try a new set of batteries to see if it powers up. If not remove the batteries and put a small bit of abrasive paper taped to the end of a pencil and sand of the contacts gently. Clean the area with the alcohols swab again and blow dry with the air blower/puffer. When dry reinstall the batteries and it should work. Always remove batteries from your gear when it's sitting for long periods of time hope this helps
Corrosion is sometimes a fix us users can do. Other times it must go in for repair. What happens is the corrosion may leak past the point we can see in to the internals of the housing eating out wiring.
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yes, if the corrosion is not to bad. you can use the eraser on the end of a pencil to remove the corrosion if this fails use a small paint brush (artist) and paint the terminals with vinegar. The corrosion is alkali and the vinegar is acidic (and about the same ph) you will see the corrosion foaming as it is being neutralized. Once done repeat with clean water to eliminate the acidic vinegar.
Clean the battery contact inside and on the battery cover with a pencil eraser. Just rub on them until shiney. DO NOT use sand paper or anything abrasive since that damage may may it more prone to corrosion. If cleaning the contacts does not work it will need to be sent to KNion.
Check the battery contacts are clean and not corroded, apart from that you have covered the most obvious cause. Probably need to be sent off for repair. I might be interested in this if you decide to sell. Ta Mark
Does the flash turn on when you push the battery door down? By push it, I mean HARD... If so, you might be able to cure this by getting some jewelry screwdrivers and flexing IN the metal contacts in the battery compartment door to increase the battery contact.. just be careful not to break the metal (but if you do, a replacement battery cover is about $16)