Nothing reminds us of how dependent we are on batteries like a failing one. Portable electronics become no longer portable, and this can wreak all kinds of havoc on our day-to-day lives. A laptop battery that suddenly stops charging can feel like the death knell for productivity, but a few simple diagnostic and repair tricks can save the day!
Batteries are fickle things and should never be disassembled. However, the following instructions involve much simpler steps that can help you to determine where the problem exists.
Plug Your Laptop in Elsewhere
Most laptops and their power adapters come with built in fail-safes to protect them against the effects of a bad power supply. The first and easiest is to try plugging the laptop’s power adapter into a different wall outlet. Sometimes, this alone can get a battery back on its feet and charging.
Even if the battery does beginning charging, continue watching to make sure it remains charging. If it doesn’t, this could indicate a problem in one of several things: the power supply, the AC adapter, or the power outlet. The problem could exist in any of this places, rather than just the battery.
Examine the AC Adapter
If the adapter’s connection to the laptop feels in any way loose, remove it and inspect the AC adapter port. A port pin should be visible, without any bend or give inside of the plug. If this has been bent, the best bet is to consult a computer repair professional to see it restored.
More immediately, a toothpick or compressed air can be used to clean ports and plugs of any debris, but this should only be attempted while the computer is powered down. Keep in mind that these parts are very important and also potentially fragile. Damaging them could cause further issues for your computer, so use caution!
Inspect the Laptop’s Battery
If you still see no results, the laptop’s battery itself may be the culprit. Power down your laptop, and then unplug the AC adapter. Next, remove the laptop’s battery and examine the slot on the computer chassis.
If the battery or the laptop are excessively hot, allow both to cool before continuing. If any visible stains or marks exist within the battery slot, or on the battery itself, these may be signs of a faulty battery or liquid damage. If liquid damage is likely, allow the battery to rest in a container of uncooked rice for up to 24 hours. Unless this liquid damage is very recent, though, you’re likely out of luck.
It should be noted that not all laptops feature a removable battery. If disassembly is required, it’s best to contact the laptop’s manufacturer or a repair professional. Certain seals in the laptop’s body must remain intact to ensure your computer’s warranty.
Reboot the Computer on Battery Power
If the battery and its port are both free of residue or damage, then wait a full minute before replacing it and powering the laptop on. Allow the computer to remain on battery power for up to ten minutes, and then reattach the power adapter.
Let your computer run for a few minutes, and wait to see if the battery begins charging.
If the laptop’s battery still will not charge, I’d recommend contacting the manufacturer. Replacing the battery and the AC adapter can be expensive, but is the next best resolution to the problematic charging issue.
Most often, a finicky battery can be fixed by following the above steps! If your laptop is charging once more, it’s still important to keep an eye on the battery, and repeat the process if it begins to falter again.