Jump to content


 


Register a free account to unlock additional features at BleepingComputer.com
Welcome to BleepingComputer, a free community where people like yourself come together to discuss and learn how to use their computers. Using the site is easy and fun. As a guest, you can browse and view the various discussions in the forums, but can not create a new topic or reply to an existing one unless you are logged in. Other benefits of registering an account are subscribing to topics and forums, creating a blog, and having no ads shown anywhere on the site.


Click here to Register a free account now! or read our Welcome Guide to learn how to use this site.

Photo

Dell L702x won't boot unless heated.


  • Please log in to reply
16 replies to this topic

#1 data89

data89

  • Members
  • 9 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:08:00 AM

Posted 13 September 2014 - 06:31 PM

I have a Dell XPS about 3 years old. Twice a year it would shut down and not boot for 3-7 days, then would work again for several months. I have gone through all of the procedures suggested in the forums. Now it will not boot unless I do this: I figured humidity must have something to do with the problem, so, I opened up the bottom, removed the ram, opened the cd drawer, removed the battery, and put a heat lamp (make sure it doesn't get too hot) and fan blowing on the upside down laptop. I have to do that for about 3 or 4 hours. Then, it will work just fine for about 5 or 6 hours, till it shuts off in the middle of your tediously composed work (of course the work has not been saved for awhile). If I only cook it for an hour or so, it will shut down after about an hour, but the longer I cook it, the longer it works.

Can anyone tell me what's happening here?



BC AdBot (Login to Remove)

 


#2 dicke

dicke

    Paraclete


  • Members
  • 2,189 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Charlotte, NC
  • Local time:11:00 AM

Posted 13 September 2014 - 09:03 PM

Welcome,

I'm going to guess!

1. The moisture is causing a short

2. The components getting hot is causing a breakdown

 

The best solution might be a replacement system

 

Sorry I can't be more helpful but without a change in the environment [cooling pad, or other device which can increase the air circulation within the system I'm at a loss to even guess.

 

Dick


Stay well and surf safe [stay protected]

Dick E


#3 data89

data89
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 9 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:08:00 AM

Posted 13 September 2014 - 09:12 PM

Welcome,

I'm going to guess!

1. The moisture is causing a short

2. The components getting hot is causing a breakdown

 

The best solution might be a replacement system

 

Sorry I can't be more helpful but without a change in the environment [cooling pad, or other device which can increase the air circulation within the system I'm at a loss to even guess.

 

Dick

It does seem like a motherboard circuit has a bad solder joint, difficult to find.



#4 dicke

dicke

    Paraclete


  • Members
  • 2,189 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Charlotte, NC
  • Local time:11:00 AM

Posted 13 September 2014 - 09:19 PM

Cold solder joints will act that way. Trying to repair them with the tools available to most of us isn't recommended. A bit too much heat in the wrong place and a component is cooked, adding to the problems. Replacement is about the only viable option I know.

Keep us posted

 

Dick


Stay well and surf safe [stay protected]

Dick E


#5 data89

data89
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 9 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:08:00 AM

Posted 28 September 2014 - 04:26 PM

Does anyone know how to get this laptop apart? I'm actually a technician and work on desktops, all printers and even the older stereo component systems, but never laptops. I'm able to get the hard drive, battery (of course), ram (of course), and have had every screw out I can find, but cannot for the life of me figure out how to split the case, without exerting extra pressure, to get a good look at the motherboard. I figure, I want to know before I take it to someone who does work on laptops and could damage it.



#6 dicke

dicke

    Paraclete


  • Members
  • 2,189 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Charlotte, NC
  • Local time:11:00 AM

Posted 29 September 2014 - 03:41 PM

If you have an old credit card or similar piece of plastic that you can slip between the top and bottom you can ease the edge tabs back away from their hooks and get the case open. The keyboard and the top come off separately. I think there are about 8 screws that have to be removed from the underside in order to free it from the motherboard and keyboard. It's been a few years since I did bench repair of laptops so I'm going by a foggy memory.
Keep us posted

Dick

Stay well and surf safe [stay protected]

Dick E


#7 zingo156

zingo156

  • BC Advisor
  • 3,333 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:10:00 AM

Posted 29 September 2014 - 03:46 PM

Remove the keyboard and under that you will find more screws holding it all together. on some models there are screws under the cd/dvd drive. The best method: remove everything to be safe. Screws can hide anywhere so pry carefully.

 

As for my guess: bad solder joint. Heat may expand the contact enough for it to function, when it cools it loses connectivity. There was a problem with a certain xps laptop (I have one still) where a resistor right next to the power adapter plugin would get very hot, after heating and cooling the connection eventually breaks, re-soldering fixes the issue. I'll do a bit of research on your model and see if there is any known issue.


Edited by zingo156, 29 September 2014 - 03:48 PM.

If I am helping you with a problem and I have not responded within 48 hours please send me a PM.

#8 data89

data89
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 9 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:08:00 AM

Posted 29 September 2014 - 08:52 PM

I was just about to reply when my laptop shut down again and I had to put the fan and heat lamp on it for a couple of hours.

 

I'll try the suggestions for getting the case apart, might be a few days before I get back to you. Thanks for the help.



#9 zingo156

zingo156

  • BC Advisor
  • 3,333 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:10:00 AM

Posted 30 September 2014 - 07:15 AM

Well there wasn't really anything about known issues I could find. I found a few threads recommending a reflow, something I personally do not recommend unless it is a short term solution until you can get a new laptop. I have done many reflows and it seems most of them fail within a few months to a year again. 

 

Depending on how hot you are actually getting the internal components, you may in a sense be partially reflowing or it could just be the heat expanding components and putting enough pressure on something to make contact correcty.

 

I would disassemble it and look closely at the motherboard. I would follow the power jack pin out. Sometimes you can get lucky and find a cracked solder joint and just resolder it and go for a few years. If you have a dedicated video card, you might consider removing that and testing with onboard if that is an option. If I recall correctly some of those models had dedicated and intel graphics. In my experience, laptops with dedicated video chipsets used for gaming generally ran hot and gpu's failed pretty frequently.


If I am helping you with a problem and I have not responded within 48 hours please send me a PM.

#10 data89

data89
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 9 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:08:00 AM

Posted 30 September 2014 - 10:27 AM

Well, I went at it this morning, 3rd effort and with cc and special plastic goo scraper made an assertive effort to get the case separated. I could tell, nothing was held by screws, but, I would get the sides split up to just below the keyboard area (the half under the touch pad) and was afraid of breaking the case, so that's it. I had taken the DVD drive out and the 3 screws below it, plus, of course, the hard drive, 2nd HD frame, and memory, and battery. About 18 screws in all. I don't see how you would get the keyboard off before splitting the case. There seemed to be no retaining hooks as far as I got, just a seating ridge, but, it would not budge past 1/2 way.

 

I'm going to call a computer store this morning, that used to be a customer of mine, and see if they are familiar with laptop repair. I hate to get a new laptop, I really like this 17" with Win 7 and it's the 4th or 5th Dell l had, but the first with any hardware problem at all.

 

If I do need to get a new laptop, then, I'll really get at this one and aggressively split the case.


Edited by data89, 30 September 2014 - 10:30 AM.


#11 zingo156

zingo156

  • BC Advisor
  • 3,333 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:10:00 AM

Posted 30 September 2014 - 11:25 AM

This might help:

 


If I am helping you with a problem and I have not responded within 48 hours please send me a PM.

#12 data89

data89
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 9 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:08:00 AM

Posted 30 September 2014 - 07:03 PM

Fantastic, I had not thought of searching for a video. Thank you very much. With the video, I was able to break the entire laptop down to the motherboard. I cleaned fan and other parts, re-seated the cables, cpu, etc., even got every screw back in it's place on re-assembly.

 

A few hours ago, when I started this, I was watching the video when it shut down and would not come on again. So, I thought, now's the time to take it apart. I finished watching the video on the old desktop (WIN XP). Remember, now, it shut off and in the past once it did that I would have to put the heat lamp and fan on it for a couple of hours, at least, before it would boot up again. Well, after finishing re-assembly, I turned it on and it booted right up. It's been on about 20 minutes now. I'm going to leave it for awhile and see what happens.

 

Been on for hour and 1/2 now and still working.


Edited by data89, 30 September 2014 - 08:29 PM.


#13 zingo156

zingo156

  • BC Advisor
  • 3,333 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Local time:10:00 AM

Posted 01 October 2014 - 07:05 AM

I have had a few computers work fine after a complete tear down and re-assembly. One was due to a lose screw rolling around causing shorts and power downs etc. The other remains a mystery. I hope that solves the problem!

 

Youtube is a great resource for tear downs. I have used it many times on a few new models when I used to get stuck.


If I am helping you with a problem and I have not responded within 48 hours please send me a PM.

#14 data89

data89
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 9 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:08:00 AM

Posted 01 October 2014 - 08:26 AM

It booted this morning, no problem, still have my fingers crossed. A lot of our computer problems used to be solved just by checking for such things. In fact, with inkjet printer repairs, we found most could be fixed with a cleaning. After awhile I just charged a flat rate for repair on them.

 

Two things, I found, may have contributed to the problem with the laptop. 1) the plastic screen underneath was coated with dust and may have prevented air movement through the fan and resulting in overheating of the CPU. Though it doesn't explain why putting a fan and heat lamp was a temporary fix. (Maybe the fan alone would have done the job, but, I was also concerned with humidity). I have noticed that the laptop fan is not running nearly as often as it had been. 2) On the metal frame that holds the circuit boards, and most everything else, there was metal tab, about 3/8 of an inch, as part of the frame moulding which appeared to contact the surface of the top cover and seemed to be a grounding point, which was built up with quite a bit of corrosion.

 

Anyhow, seems good for now, and thanks for your help and everyone who contributed.



#15 dicke

dicke

    Paraclete


  • Members
  • 2,189 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Charlotte, NC
  • Local time:11:00 AM

Posted 01 October 2014 - 06:02 PM

We'll be here

If all continues to go well go well try to drop back and confirm the fact. 

Thanks

 

Dick


Stay well and surf safe [stay protected]

Dick E





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users