What To Do If Your Laptop Or Tablet Battery Won’t Charge

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May 16, 2012 By Matt Smith

Occasionally we receive a question on MakeUseOf Answers about a battery that refuses to charge. his isn!t sur"rising.

#atteries are known to only last so long, an$ "oor con$itions can $rastically re$uce their life. %ssues with chargers or e&cessive "ower $raw can also be a "roble'. (et!s a$$ress this co''on concern. )ust what $o you $o when your battery is on the outs* here are several answers, an$ they a""ly to 'ost $evices with batteries + la"to"s, s'art"hones an$ even tablets.

Are You Drawing A Lot Of Power?

,very single electronics $evice in your ho'e, inclu$ing your -.- "layer an$ 'icrowave, has a "ower su""ly. he "ower su""ly is $esigne$ to han$le a certain 'ount of /uice. %n a $evice without a battery there is a 'a&i'u' a'ount of "ower $raw that 'ust be han$le$ + but no 'ore. -evices with batteries are $ifferent. hey co'e with a$a"ters that are 'eant to han$le a certain 'ount of "ower, but what ha""ens if you!re charging the battery and using every bit of /uice the $evice can $raw* 0our charging 'ay slow or sto". he 'ost e&tre'e an$ "o"ular e&a'"le of this is the i1a$ 2, a $evice that ba$ly out'atches the ca"acity of the a$a"ter. A""le!s latest tablet will so'eti'es use u" battery even though it!s "lugge$ in. 1ower co'ing in through the a$a"ter is out'atche$ by "ower use$ by the tablet. Many "hones an$ tablets e&hibit si'ilar behavior. U3# charging is a co''on cul"rit because a U3# connection $elivers less "ower than a connection to a wall socket. (a"to"s are less likely to have this "roble', but % have use$ ga'ing la"to"s that charge$ slowly if they were use$ for ga'ing while the battery in for a fill4u".

Is Your Battery Connection Secure?

his is the re4incarnation of 5is it "lugge$ in*6 for the wireless worl$, an$ /ust like that ol$ bit of e'barrassing a$vice, this one is equally vali$. %n fact, % say it!s 'ore vali$ now than ever before + unlike "ower "lugs, batteries co'e in all sha"es an$ si7es. 8hat can you $o* ake a very close look at your battery an$, if you still have the $evice!s 'anual, consult it as well. Make sure there are no ga"s an$ that the battery is flush with its 'ount. %f that see's to be the case, re'ove the battery again an$ check its connectors. %t!s rare, but a connection can beco'e blocke$ by $ebris, a "ortion of the connection 'ight beco'e bent or a connector 'ay have suffere$ corrosion. 3houl$ you fin$ any of the above to be the case you!ll nee$ to clear the connection. 8i"e away $ebris with a soft cloth, re4"osition any bent 'etal with a s'all "air of twee7ers an$ re'ove corrosion with a s'all a'ount of an a""ro"riate cleaner 9which 'ay /ust be water: + /ust be sure to let the connection $ry before using the battery again.

Is The Power Adapter Wor ing?

3o'eti'es a battery won!t charge because the a$a"ter 'eant to charge it is broken. he easiest way to check this is to re'ove the battery, "lug in the a$a"ter an$ see if the $evice turns on.

8ith that sai$, a woun$e$ a$a"ter 'ight a""ear to work at first but fail to work when you atte'"t a $e'an$ing task. -on!t /ust "lug in the a$a"ter an$ see if the $evice works. 0ou shoul$ see if it continues to work when the $evice $raws a lot of "ower, such as when you!re "laying a ga'e or watching a high4$efinition 'ovie.

!e"Ca#i$rate The Battery
%n so'e cases a battery 'ay see's to no longer be charging because of a calibration issue. ;alibration issues occur because a battery $oes not have a gauge insi$e it. he battery life gauge you see in your o"erating syste' is only a "re$iction. #attery si7e, current "ower $raw an$ known "ast battery life are so'e of the variables use$ to calculate how long your $evice will last + an$ so'eti'es, the calculation can be ba$ly skewe$. <esetting the battery can solve the "roble'. Allow the battery to $ischarge fully an$ then charge back u". he re4charge "rocess 'ay take 'any hours an$ 'ay not see' to "rocee$ as it shoul$, but give it ti'e. 8ith luck, your battery will su$$enly register a 100= charge an$ your troubles are solve$.

%i&e The Battery Ti'e To !eco&er

A battery that a""ears to be $ea$ 'ay have been $ee"ly $ischarge$. his 'eans that the a'ount of charge taken out of the battery was 'ore than it was $esigne$ to han$le, an$ as a result there!s so little charge left that it a""ears $ea$. #atteries foun$ in consu'er electronics $on!t often have this "roble', but %!ve run across it three ti'es, all with la"to" batteries. %n each case the la"to" ha$ been $ischarge$ until it auto'atically shut $own. A la"to" is su""ose$ to shut $own auto'atically at aroun$ 10= charge, $e"en$ing on the o"erating syste' an$ user settings, but these la"to"s ha$n!t $one that. hey!$ consu'e$ the battery until nothing was left an$ then shut $own col$. <eviving a battery fro' a $ee" $ischarge, if it can be revive$, requires that you turn the $evice off entirely an$ allow it to charge for an e&ten$e$ "erio$ of ti'e 9at least two or three hours:.

It(s Sti## )ot Wor ing*
% han$le a lot of electronics of various ty"es, so %!ve run across 'ore than a few batteries that a""eare$ to be 'alfunctioning, not charging or $ea$. ,very single one of the' eventually returne$ to nor'al behavior after % followe$ the ti"s outline$ above. 8ith that sai$, batteries $o eventually $ie. My ol$ (enovo la"to" reache$ a "oint where it woul$ only last twenty 'inutes on a charge. %ts battery was clearly rea$y to she$ its 'ortal coil, an$ no $oubt woul$ have if % ha$ not re"lace$ it. Once your battery issues are resolve$, be sure to treat it right to "reserve its future en$urance. ;heck out ina!s article about how to care for your battery to fin$ out 'ore.

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