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My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP

 
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DiscouragedDellOwner



Joined: Jun 19, 2006
Posts: 4



PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 7:29 pm    Post subject: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP

I recently purchased a used Dell Latitude C640. It WAS working fine for the last couple of weeks until yesterday. I turned it on and about 15 minutes later, while I was using it, it just shut off. I have tried to restart it numerous times but it only stays on for about 30 seconds, 2 minutes at the most if it turns on at all. It shuts down at various time(IE After windows boot up, during bios boot, and all times in between). Please help!
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Gary66



Joined: Sep 01, 2005
Posts: 8353



PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 8:12 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

1. You do not give us much to go on.
2. Many things could cause this including overheating, memory problems..etc.
3. Recently purchased-return it and ask for a refund.
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DiscouragedDellOwner



Joined: Jun 19, 2006
Posts: 4



PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 8:16 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

I know that I have given you very little. I don't have much more though. When I plug in the AC power cord, known good, the LED on the laptop does not indicate that AC power is connected. Other that that I gave you all that I know. Everything in the bios looks fine, when it will boot up that far, after the bios I get a warning saying that the clock is not set and windows is not giving me any warnings.
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Gary66



Joined: Sep 01, 2005
Posts: 8353



PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 9:22 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

The Laptops battery may be shot. Did this come with any type of warranty?

See parts list below--URL

http://search.dell.com/results.aspx?s=gen&k=Dell+Latitude+C640&amp...t=prod&
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DiscouragedDellOwner



Joined: Jun 19, 2006
Posts: 4



PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 9:26 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

I thought about the battery thing also, but all 5 leds on the battery light up. I have also tried another battery and a new power cord. Now the computer will not even start. The HD led light up for a second, but nothing after that. No there is not a warranty.
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goretsky



Joined: Dec 07, 2002
Posts: 9833

Location: Southern California

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 4:51 am    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

Hello,

The report of the clock not being set sounds like a failed CMOS/RTC (Real Time Clock) battery, however, I don't recall one of those causing a notebook computer to shut down.

A likely culprit for that symptom, though, is the system overheating, as Gary66 noted. In this case, cleaning the ducting for the fans as well as the fans themselves might help, since dust and debris blocking them cause the cooling system to operate less efficient and remove less heat from the system. Here is an article from the old version of the Lockergnome Help Forum discussing notebook overheating issues and possible solutions which may be of help.

Regards,

Aryeh Goretsky
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DiscouragedDellOwner



Joined: Jun 19, 2006
Posts: 4



PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 12:49 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

Would the notebook overheating cause the notebook to shut down after only a few seconds or not start at all even after long periods of being off?
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nlinecomputers



Joined: Jul 25, 2003
Posts: 1701

Location: Anywhere but this forum.

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 12:56 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

No it would not. Likely this is a problem with the voltage regulator on the motherboard. This is not a replaceable part. You replace the entire motherboard which will likely cost more then you paid for that old unit. I'd say you have a great doorstop. Crying or Very sad
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Werebo



Joined: Aug 09, 2003
Posts: 4078

Location: SE London, UK...

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 1:25 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

It might be the 'Power Brick', the PSU box that plugs into the mains and drops the voltage down to PC voltages, remote but a possibility Confused ....

It's most likely why the previous owner decided to sell Sad ....

Any chance of getting your money back again??? Goods sold that don't work might well be covered under your local equivalent of 'Fair Trading Standards' if applicable....
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:00 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

I now own a little Compaq laptop that was given to me because it had some serious problems.
For starters, the owner had broken the jack off of the motherboard where the AC power enters the PC.
Secondly, the main DC battery was shorted.
Then he had gotten the keyboard wet and shorted it out.

A Doorstop, right?

heck NO!

I removed the shorted DC battery and just left it out.
I soldered two wires onto the motherboard and brought them out to a power jack that would accept the plug from the AC Power supply.
Then I plugged in a Y connector into the PS2 jack on the back of the laptop, and I plugged a standard keyboard and PS2 (optical) mouse into the Y connector.

Now it works just fine. Razz Twisted Evil

It's only a doorstop if you give up on it.
However, if you're not an electronics tech, getting it fixed may just be more expensive than buying another one.

Good Luck to ya,
Shadow Cool
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nlinecomputers



Joined: Jul 25, 2003
Posts: 1701

Location: Anywhere but this forum.

PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:32 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

Sounds like you ruined a perfectly repairable laptop.

You can get those jacks from a billion sources on the net. They run about $10-15 at most. Some are $5.

Batteries are things that have to be replaced on Laptops all the time.

And laptop Keyboards can be found all over ebay.

Heck this guy might be able to find a replacement motherboard on ebay. Unlike a lot of Laptops Dell laptops are very easy to take a part and they have the complete service manuals for almost all of the them online. All you need are small philips head screw drivers like jewelers use and you can easily take them apart.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 21, 2006 9:04 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

Quote:
Sounds like you ruined a perfectly repairable laptop.


You err! I DID repair it.

The jack wasn't bad....it was physically ripped right off the motherboard ripping up some of the traces in the process and burning part of the mobo.

I used to design and build PCB's....I do know something about them.

Soldering two wires onto the appropriate spots on the mobo and bringing them out to a jack....was the most equitable repair.

As for the keyboard....it wasn't the keyboard that was bad....it was the motherboard itself....

But with my repairs...it makes me a very nice little portable computer. It's my backup system.

I have a large brief case to carry it in, along with my mini keyboard and mouse. For me it works just fine and I didn't have to send it anywhere for any expensive repairs.
As for the battery....they are about $69 and I just don't need one, at that price. It never goes "walkabout" but just sits on my bench, so a battery really isn't needed at all.

It fills my needs and so far hasn't cost me anything.

Lamont Cool
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 7:50 pm    Post subject: Re: My Dell shuts off on it's own...PLEASE HELP [Login to view extended thread Info.]

I'm just fixing one now. The problem seems to be that the CPU isn't seated properly due to - shoddy workmanship? After reseating it, the system starts up fine. I may have to put a small shim in there to make sure it stays tight, like a piece of a business card.
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