View Full Version : Haaaaaalp

2009-05-19, 05:09 AM
Okay, guys, here's the problem. I have an Inspiron 1520 Dell Laptop. Now, after about a year, both the battery and the charger died. I've been told this is average for Dell laptop gear. So, I purchased a new battery and charger. This charger is different and has a small orange adaptor. Stats on the sticker as follows;
Model: FY1904750
Input: 100-240VAC 50/60Hz 2.5A
Output: 19VDC 4.75A

Anyway, I've had this charger for a month and it's worked great but all of a sudden it's stopped charging my battery. It stops it losing power, but it does not regain any.
Please help, this is desperately urgent as I use this laptop for every single one of my classes in school, every day. I can't really do without it T_T

Generic Archer
2009-05-19, 05:33 AM
Do you leave it plugged in for long periods of time?

thats a guaranteed way to reduce battery life to less than 10 minutes, other than that ring them and hope that it is still under warranty, the battery and charger should be anyway if you got them from a reputable source.

2009-05-19, 05:45 AM
It's quite definately the charger, not the battery, as it doesn't work on my old battery either.

It doesn't have a short life, it just isn't charging up at all. It says 'plugged in, not charging.'

2009-05-19, 07:06 AM
It COULD be the actual computer motherboard. Have you been able to check how much voltage the charger is actually giving out? If it's the wrong voltage, then it will plug the computer in, but not charge the battery. If the charger is giving out the proper voltage, though, then it's a problem with the computer. Do you have a way to check it with another computer (not just the battery)?

2009-05-19, 07:14 AM
Unfortunately no. Now, the weird thing is, it was charging at school today, but not since I got home this evening.

I can't check it on any other laptop. My ex uses a tiny eeepc and her mother has an old microstar international. Incompatable with both. :(

2009-05-19, 07:34 AM
You'll need to find a multimeter or something to check the voltage with.

By any chance, does it have some sort of LED indicator light?

2009-05-19, 07:42 AM
It does, and it's on. I don't have a multimeter =/ It was charging at school today so maybe it's a poor amount of voltage coming from the powerpoints here?
If you manage to give me a way to get rid of this problem for free/close to it, I will marry you and give you beautiful children. I need this laptop and I need it to work completely.

2009-05-19, 07:50 AM
Before doing anything else and messing with a multimeter, check the configuration of the battery under windows. (Control Panel -> Power) You will have a dell utility that can detect information about your battery, the number of cycles you have and other pertinent information.
It is possible the battery is set to charge only when you get below a certain %age. Like 80% for example, this prolongs battery lifecycles.

I've only got my Thinkpad here so I can't send you a screenshot of the dell application.

Also were the charger and the battery you bought certified to work with your model of laptop? Did you get them from DELL directly ?

On my Thinkpad the application looks like:

2009-05-19, 07:54 AM
Have you tried every single power plug in the house? If the charger were having trouble it would probably not keep the LED indicator on at all times (at least mine didn't when it died).

The only way I can think of to know whether it is the computer or the charger is a multimeter. If it's giving out the proper voltage, chances are it's the computer. Or maybe just the battery (problems like that can be intermittent before they become permanent). If it IS the battery, then you really would have to get it checked out as something in your computer may be damaging the battery. Now, if it only charges at school, consistently, then it could be something in your house. I don't think so, though, since what the charger should do is lower the voltage from whatever comes into the house to the 19V your laptop uses, as well as converting it from AC to DC. As you can see, it takes anything from 100 to 240 V and I think everything else in your house is working fine? If everything is (you might try connecting something else to the plug your computer generally uses), then the voltage is in that range and therefore correct. I don't think the cable is broken, either, since you say the computer realizes it's plugged in.

You COULD try to turn it off, remove the battery, check that the contacts are okay and replacing it carefully in case that it's just the battery not connected 100% correctly.

I think, though, that it's more possible that either the charger is giving out the wrong voltage or the battery is very much dead again.

One other question, though. Do you have the old charger? What does its sticker say? Is it the same voltage output? If your new charger gives out more voltage than the old one, it will cause the computer to say it's plugged in but not charge the battery.

2009-05-19, 08:07 AM
BW: Yup. I've tried removing it etc, too. I don't have the old charger, but I have an old battery that came with it which was still chargable but had a highly depleted charge-time, it lasted about a year before its life dropped. It doesn't charge either. The battery I'm using now is EXACTLY the same as that one, but the charger is different to my old charger (which I don't have anymore.) http://www.b2c-battery.com.au/product_model.php/81588+Dell+Inspiron-1520+Laptop-AC-Adapter

That's the charger I've got. One year warranty, but the receipt has dissapeared, so...;-;

Ashtar: I have 'power options' and it just gives me the ability to choose 'balanced' 'power saver' and 'maximum performance' and also the ability to check my charge level, whether i'm charging or losing power (currently rated as 'idle' because it's doing neither). The link above, as mentioned, leads to the charger I have, its warranty and what models it's compatible with.

2009-05-19, 08:10 AM
Also I should mention; a similar thing happened with my old charger a little while before it died completely; it started on a specific powerpoint but eventually it wouldnt charge at any of them in the house.

2009-05-19, 08:23 AM
Is it possible you have "unclean" power coming in to your house? Like spikes, irregular ~ Hz or other stuff? That could cause a power supply to fail earlier. If it still charges at other places, maybe you should have your installation checked, especially if you have a high rate of electrical failures (lightbulbs need regluar replacing, fridge, electric oven or other need servicing often...).

2009-05-19, 08:29 AM
I'm inclined to think that it is indeed your charger. The old battery didn't die completely from what you said (just doesn't charge or last so well anymore) so I don't think it's your computer. It's still possible, but I don't think it's likely.

When a computer repair shop gave me a wrong charger, I had a similar issue. The computer would be connected, but the battery would not charge. However, in my case, since the issue was a higher voltage, I also got a very weird behaviour out of power options. It basically gave me a VERY wrong estimate of the battery life (17 hours? Seriously, what on Earth...). Does your computer give you any such odd indication?

I think you really should look for that receipt, though. Does sound like a likely dying charger.

What Ashtar said is also a very good thing to check.

2009-05-19, 08:29 AM
We don't seem to have any of the latter complaints except for some lightbulb problems a while back, but that was more likely than not because they were all put in at about the same time, so it's reasonable that they'd die around the same time.
I'd say it's possible we've got irregular Hz but I've got no real way of checking...

BW: It could be, but I'm really curious as to why it's dying within a month. I've taken care of it. Completely new charger, bought at the same time as the battery. Considering they were both new I'm thinking more and more it's something wrong with this place, but I'm hoping I can get the charger itself checked out at a computer store somewhere...

2009-05-21, 05:38 AM
The charger is probably a lemon. Sometimes, due to a manufacturing defect or whatever, some chargers or batteries fail early.

If anyone else at school uses a laptop with a compatible charger (meaning same output and it fits easily) try borrowing it and seeing if your battery charges. If it does, you need a new charger. If it doesn't, the problem is probably with the laptop.

2009-05-24, 05:05 AM
Ok guys, we're assuming it's the motherboard...Any idea how much a new one will cost if it turns out to be true? D:

2009-05-24, 05:34 AM
Ok guys, we're assuming it's the motherboard...Any idea how much a new one will cost if it turns out to be true? D:

How much is a new laptop?

2009-05-24, 05:38 AM
How much is a new laptop?

Desktops tend to be cheaper. :p

But that's about right, a laptop with a dead motherboard is a laptop that needs to be thrown out.

2009-05-24, 05:57 AM
But my laptop is currently 1100 dollars D:
Replacing the motherboard would be about 500 or 600 if we got it at cost, yeah? Because we know a guy who basically owns a computer business who, if we got to replace the botherboard, would do it at cost. Doing it to help, instead of for a profit, etc.