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No power on Dell Inspiron 1720

By nebthet
Aug 24, 2009
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  1. I bought this 17" Dell Inspiron 1720 just over a year ago.
    A week ago I was using it and everything was running just fine. I turned around to do something, for less than five minutes and when I returned the computer was turned off.

    I pressed the power button, no power, no lights to indicate any power is going to the unit.
    I checked my power supply, tried different power outlets to no avail. When I would plug the power supply in the green light would come on indicating the unit was working, but as soon as I plugged it into the back of the laptop, (when I put my ear to the power supply) there would be a little zap and the green light would go out.

    Thinking it was the power supply, I had some friends bring over their Dell power supplies. The P-10, two prong power supply.
    It did the same with theirs.

    The next thing I checked was to see whether or not the battery had any power left.
    It did. When I pressed the button on the back it had 5 lights indicating it was full.

    So, before I go and have to more than likely shell out lots of money to someone to fix it, I would like to know if any one else has come across this same thing and what it may be.

    Thanks.
  2. luvhuffer

    luvhuffer TechSpot Paladin Posts: 638

    Remove the battery.
    Plug in the power supply. Ensure the system is powered off.
    Remove all external peripherals.
    Press and hold the <Fn> key on the keyboard.
    Continue to hold the <Fn> key while pressing the power button.
    Release both buttons.

    See if that works. If not, go here and run this diagnostic.
  3. nebthet

    nebthet TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for the info luvhuffer.
    I tried what you told me to do and nothing happens.
    As soon as I plug the ac adaptor into the back of the computer, it shorts out any adaptor it plugs into. I went through several of these.

    When I plug the power adaptor in and don't connect it to the computer, it has the green light on it nice and bright.

    I went to the Dell website as well. Because I am currently using an old.. Mac OSX10.3 500mhz proccessor I have come across a lot of programs and websites where I cannot get very far due to the new scripts being used and unfortunately the new scripts are now only compatible with osx 10.4 or higher, so my hands are tied that way.

    On the link about, I could only get as far as the question where it asked me if the AC adaptor light was on or off on the D series adaptor.
    The light is on when not plugged into the computer... off when it is.
  4. harsh123

    harsh123 TS Rookie

    hey nebthet,

    I have the same problem too with my 1720 and have had it just over a year too. As you have described the exact same thing happen to my laptop too! I called Dell up to see how much whould it cost to fix the problem they said that your mother has gone and needs to be replaced! approx £250 :( I was checking ebay out to see if i can find any cheap deals and get it fix by some1 professional! but havn't had any luck. Really dont want to pay the amount Dell is asking for! Whats up with your situation?
    Cheers Harsh
  5. nydatapc

    nydatapc TS Rookie

    Hello Nebtech,
    We had 2 dell laptop Latitude D520 and Inspiron 1721 for repair in 1 month with the same problem you're facing...after a long dell support conversation, and after we changed ...twithout no results, we diagnose the laptop with a faulty motherboard problem and because the time was short for us we just replace the motherboard and the problem was solved...we still have the mobo in our stock hoping someone will come with an solution.
  6. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    A known laptop motherboard failure. We have seen three in our shops. We have expert motherboard techs, but none have figgered out a fix. Online boards from eBay are a risk. and the cost from Dell is outrageously high.
    If your laptop is still under warranty, ask for repair or replacement asap. Dell techs know the problem is wide-spread.
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