Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Laptop Battery

Contributed by Haresh Karamchandani

Image from 21 Ways to Improve Your Laptops's Battery Life

We imported 5 units of HP2000z laptops from HP, USA for supply to an NGO client. These are competitively priced laptops (We got them for US$384.98) and supplied the client after adding cost of freight, clearing and forwarding.

Yesterday the client called me and complained that they had opened up 3 out of the 5 laptops for use but all 3 had “Battery Problems”. I questioned him as to what exactly is the problem and he replied that the batteries were not charging at all!

I immediately called up HP support and gave them the laptop serial numbers and product numbers. I got a very cooperative tech agent on the telephone and he remained with me on the telephone for more than an hour helping to troubleshoot the problem and eventually resolve it:

The first thing he asked us to do was to remove out the battery and the power adaptor from the laptop. We did that. Then he said that we should keep the power on button pressed for about 30-45 seconds even though there was no battery or power adaptor. We did that.

Then he said we should insert the battery back into the Laptop and plug the power adaptor back. We did that. Then he said we should put the laptop on by pressing the power button and at the same time as the laptop booted we should continuously tap on the F10 key. We did that.

Then he asked us what we could see on the screen. We could see nothing! The screen was blank! Then he asked us whether the keyboard lights were on, yes they were on. Then he asked us if the light on the power pin area was on, yes it was blinking. He then asked us to switch off the laptop. We did that.

Then he said that we should restart the laptop, but this time we should do it normally without pressing any F10 key. We did that. This time, the laptop booted and the screen lit up with the Windows 7 logo!

Then he asked us to check the battery icon on the bottom right hand side corner to see whether the battery was charging. Indeed it was! It showed 41% at that time. And about 5 minutes later it showed 51%.

Then he asked us whether we could see HP Tech Support on the screen. Yes we could and he asked us to click on that. Then he asked us to go to troubleshooting and then to Battery/Power. We did that. We saw a remark: battery performing normally, but the power adaptor needs to be plugged in. The power adaptor was plugged in. I asked him why we are getting this remark. He said that was absolutely perfect and in order. He said that we would not get this remark if the battery charge % was over 75%. We continued to charge the battery and 10 minutes later it was over 75% and again did this check. There was no remark!

Then he advised that it would be a good idea to calibrate the battery regularly. This is how the calibration is done: Charge the battery till it is 100%. Then remove out the power adaptor and use the laptop until the battery is fully drained out and the laptop turns off by itself. Then charge it again to 100% and repeat the same. Do this 3 times. He said that this procedure is advisable and will help calibrate the battery and keep it healthy and in good shape.

NATC supplies Laptops and Accessories to clients and also provides on-site support and warranties. This client just enjoyed the support! Another happy NATC client.

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