Computer Won’t Turn On? Try These 5 Actions

November 12th, 2020

computer won't turn on

“Well, what gives?!” 

There are few things more annoying than staring at your own reflection in the monitor of a desktop or laptop computer that won’t boot up. In this piece, we’re going to provide a handful of steps you can try to get your computer to come to life once again. 

1. Check Out the Power Source

If your computer seems completely devoid of life or movement (no lights, no fans spinning, etc.), the problem may be as simple (or complex) as the power. (No judgment—we’ve all been there!)

First, make sure that the power source is fully plugged into the computer, that the cord is fully plugged into an electrical outlet, and that the outlet is supplying electricity. You can test your outlet by unplugging another working device and plugging it into the necessary outlet.

If your computer is running through a power-strip-style extension cord or the preferred surge protector, check to see that any power switches are in the “on” or “power” position. 

Dead Laptop Battery

Another reason your laptop won’t turn on is that the battery is completely drained. Even when not in use, batteries can lose some of their power over time—especially if your laptop has other accessories plugged into the ports that do not have their own power sources. At times, leaving the laptop on the charger for a time may supply the necessary charge for the computer to the point of allowing a boot-up. Other times, the battery may have outlived its usefulness and may need to be replaced. 

2. Monitor Problems  

Just because you can’t see anything on your computer screen doesn’t necessarily mean that the computer is kaput—your monitor just may need some attention. If you’ve attempted to boot up your computer, hear the familiar whirling, but are still staring into a blank screen, make sure that your computer monitor is: 

  • turned on
  • is properly connected to a power source
  • is properly connected to the computer
  • Has the screen brightness turned up appropriately (it sounds silly, but it happens) 

Most external monitors have their own power buttons on the front along with menu buttons to adjust settings. For laptop computers experiencing such issues, the screen may be disconnected internally or may have experienced other issues inside—possibly from impact, liquid damage, or from another source. 

3. Accessory Devices

For as helpful as additional accessories can be, they can occasionally impact computer operation. To rule them out as the problem, attempt to turn on your computer after unplugging all accessories from the USB ports short of the mouse and keyboard. If the computer turns on properly after trying this, you can determine the culprit by repeating the process while plugging in one USB accessory at a time until the problem returns. 

4. Software/Driver Issues

Certain malfunctioning drives or other components may be the reason your computer isn’t booting up properly. Fortunately, you can start your computer in “Safe Mode” to get the bottom of the issue. 

How to Start Safe Mode On Windows 7 or Older: 

  1. Attempt to start your computer normally. When you detect that it’s starting up (regardless of the monitor activity) hold down the F8 key. 
  2. If a menu pops up, you can release the F8 key and navigate through Safe Mode. 

How to Start Safe Mode On a Mac / Apple Computer: 

  1. Shortly after booting up your computer, hold down the Shift key. 
  2. Release the Shift key once the Apple logo appears. 

From Safe Mode with your Windows OS, you should be able to run a System Restore which will roll back the operation of your computer to a date in the past when it functioned properly.

5. Take Your Device to a Computer Repair Professional

“But the reason I’m reading this is to keep from having to visit a computer repair technician!” 

We know, we know. However, if you’ve exhausted all do-it-yourself options, you’re really left with no other choice. The good news is that the remedy may be an extremely quick and inexpensive fix that an experienced computer repair professional can address—possibly even over the phone! Keep your chin up.

Spilled Drink On Laptop? Do This Immediately to Avoid Liquid Damage

November 12th, 2020

spilled drink on laptop

No time to lose! Execute these steps now!

  • Step 1: Unplug It Immediately
  • Step 2: Turn It Off
  • Step 3: Remove the Battery…If You Can
  • Step 4: Look for Dangerous Signs
  • Step 5: Dry It Out (Not With Rice!)
  • Step 6: Take It to a Professional

Step 1: Unplug It Immediately

Liquid and electricity do not mix. Quickly and safely disconnecting power sources is your best chance of reducing the likelihood of electrical shorts within your laptop. Even before turning it off, your first gut response to spilling your latte all over your Macbook should be to make sure your hands aren’t wet and safely unplug any power supply. Also, unplug any accessories plugged into any ports on your laptop.

Step 2: Turn It Off

Once your wet laptop is successfully disconnected from any power supply, turn it off in the way that is usually frowned upon: press and hold down your laptop’s power button until it completely shuts down. 

Step 3: Remove the Battery…If You Can

To protect your system from electrical shorts due to whatever you just spilled on the keyboard, removing the battery will help salvage your laptop. Most laptops with removable batteries have a few latches that make removing the battery fairly intuitive. Some laptops, unfortunately, do not make removing the battery easy or even possible without certain tools. If removing the battery is not possible, you’ll want to skip to Step 4 and Step 6 immediately.

Step 4: Look for Dangerous Signs

Before you can begin the process of removing moisture from your laptop, make sure that there are no signs of smoke, bulging components, or other instances that make handling the device potentially dangerous.

Step 5: Dry It Out

So far, your laptop should be safely disconnected from any power sources and completely shut down. Now you should be able to safely be able to attempt to remove the moisture. If you feel comfortable enough with removing the backplate, do so. Use a lint-free paper towel or cloth to wipe off visible moisture. Lay your laptop upside-down on something lint-free, yet absorbent such as a paper towel. It’s best to leave the laptop to dry for about a day before attempting to connect it to a power source again and turning it on. 

Bonus: Don’t Use Rice!!

The internet is full of articles that sing the praises of burying a soaked electronic device in a bowl of rice to remove moisture. While this practice may be useful for some devices without many moving parts or ports such as tablets and mobile devices, doing so with a laptop is not advised. Even though rice does a fairly decent job of absorbing moisture, laptop hinges, keyboards, and ports will likely become jammed with rice, possibly leading to more damage than the spill. Save your rice for dinner.

Step 6: Take It to a Professional

Believe it or not, if the proper steps are taken, many laptops can make a full recovery from drink spills if the right steps are taken in time. Even if your computer seems to work fine following a spill, it’s still a good idea to take it to a computer repair specialist for a professional inspection. The computer repair technician can inspect sensitive components for moisture damage that can prematurely shorten overall the lifespan of your laptop computer.