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Dell XPS M1530 won't boot

By camahule ยท 106 replies
Oct 24, 2009
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  1. superduffio

    superduffio TS Rookie

    Are you in the UK or US? If you're within the EU you're protected under consumer legislation and you can take Dell to the small claims court. Rules say high end consumer goods must last a 'reasonable' period of time, and I would certainly say 2-3 years is not a reasonable period for piece of electronic equipment costing in the region of 1000 pounds. How long did the replacement board last?
  2. Campey1986

    Campey1986 TS Rookie

    Unfortunately, I do not live in the U.K. I live in the US. The replacement board lasted about 2 years and one month because I got it replaced in June 2009, and it failed again on August 25, 2011. But during that time I still consistently got messages from Windows that the display adapter had crashed, and I got a lot of blue screen crashes with the message "Driver IRQ not less or equal." I do live in the state of Georgia, and we have a Lemon Law, so I thought I might pursue that. Plus I am filing complaints against Dell with every organization I can think of.
  3. tl23v0l2

    tl23v0l2 TS Rookie

    Hi guys,

    It seems we are on the same boat here. I'll tell my whole story of the XPS m1530.
    It's been 03/2008 since I've purchase this laptop. It was good when I first used it for atleast 1 week after the malfunction of my dvd rom after I've first used it. Good thing for me I still got my warranty and I spent 3 times going to best buy just to replaced this laptop and exchange it for a new one which is great.

    Using this laptop is a pain in my *** for the past 3 years. I've been in an autoshutdown issue due to clogging of dust in my cooling fan. The problem occurs when I play games the use to much ram like online games and autoshutdown will activate after it exceed its maximum heat tolerance. The solution I've done for this issue is I remove the back cover and unscrewed the cooling fan and remove all the stuck dust on it. My laptop works fine again and I maintain cleaning my cooling fan every six months.

    Now 2011, this black screen issue occurs on my laptop. My everyday daily used is like open my laptop, go online for 6~8 hrs then stayed it open until tomorrow. I do shutting down it once in a while but I preferred to lived it open and go thru a sleep mode status. And after yesterday I came back to work, I opened my laptop and hit some buttons, the screen won't go to its usual state of going back to life. I shut it down like my instinct told me to do so and wait for several secs but still black screen won't go out. After several turning ON and shutting it down I've gone tired doing it and get some info online and finally send me to this forum.

    The quoted above is the first thing I've done and it works for me BUT only ONCE. After I revived my laptop to its normal state, I update my windows and when I download all the updates I need, I then restart my laptop to install all the updates. And the BLACK SCREEN problem occurs again.

    I've used the quoted proceeding above again but it won't work anymore. I also do the fn + power button but the only thing happen is that it produce a 2 solid light left side of the power light and 1 blinking light following the 2 solid light. I dunno what is the meaning of those lights so please make me enlighten.

    Do of my frustration, I manage to pull out the hard drive which is my first time and remove the front plate and keyboard to check it underneath to see if I can find a problem on that. I also do my usual doings of removing my cooling fan and remove some clogging dust and remove/switch my memories to make some adjustment. I also notice my thermal paste is fading away which is a bad sign.

    Now that I wrote all the things happening on my laptop, my next thing to do is buy a thermal paste and put it on and hope some changes to happen. That's all for now and will be back here to update my situation. :D
  4. superduffio

    superduffio TS Rookie

    It's the gpu mate. You need a new motherboard. Changing the thermal paste will make no difference whatsoever.
  5. tl23v0l2

    tl23v0l2 TS Rookie

    I've rather do something done spend a lot of money. :))

    I'm going now in the store to buy some thermal paste and blow this thing up with a hair dryer (do you have an alternative for hair dryer?). Hope for some changes. :)
  6. superduffio

    superduffio TS Rookie

    I did the hair dryer fix, it worked for like two days. You need a new board trust me.
  7. oggo

    oggo TS Rookie

    Hi, just want to share my story.
    I got a Dell 1530 which turned black yesterday.

    First I tried the hairdryer trick without success, but then I tried tintintin trick to turn the PC on with the GPU heatsink a little bit away from the GPU itself.
    The GPU got very hot after approx 5min and then I removed the spacing material (isolated cable), screwed the heatsink thingy back (2 screws) och carefully tapped with back of screwdriver a couple of times (with PC still on).
    Then I turned the PC off with long press on power button so fans turned off completly, and after that turned it back on and it worked!!!

    It will probably fail again soon, but I got it running, and could extract some documents I needed.

    For a more permanent solution, I belive this is the way forward:
    w ww.youtube.com/watch?v=wt9bIc0XVV0
    Just have to find a shop who can do it for me, looks to fiddly for me :)

    Lastly, big thanks to all in this thread and forum!
  8. blank13

    blank13 TS Rookie

    Hi there, first off, many many thanks to everyone for all the informative posts.

    I would really appreciate some advice; anyone here managed to fix the problem permanently, either by applying new thermal paste or by using a heat gun on it to reflow the solder ?

    I have used the 'lift heat sink above GPU' trick three times now to revive my laptop, I might try the heat gun method next before I go ahead and get a new laptop .. although one of my heat sink assembly's screws are stripped, so I'm not sure if I'll be able to do it.

    Thanks in advance!
  9. superduffio

    superduffio TS Rookie

    1. I got Dell to fit a re-conditioned motherboard. They didn't charge me a penny, and I'm well out of warranty. They know all about this problem, try calling them.

    2. There are quite a few laptop repair places offering fixes for this problem on eBay. The price is about 50 pounds, very reasonable.
  10. blank13

    blank13 TS Rookie

    Thanks for your reply. May I know how exactly did you explain the issue to Dell ? So that I can try to do the same thing. I'm in Australia though, so I'm not sure if they're as generous over here!
  11. superduffio

    superduffio TS Rookie

    You're welcome. I rang them up on the uk customer service line, they put me through to the 'out of warranty team'. In India. They were *reasonably* easy to communicate with. I explained the problem I was having (black screen) and that I knew it was caused by the faulty nvidia gpu. They clearly have received a lot of calls as straight away they said they would send someone round to fit a re-conditioned motherboard. Before I even had to threaten them with going to the small claims court, which was what I was going to do! I suggest be polite, let them know that you know about the faulty batch of nvidia chips, abouth the free repairs offered in uk and us (i don't know if they did the same in europe and asia?)and the american class action lawsuit. If they don't offer a free repair, up the ante, tell them you know your rights as a comnsumer etc. Good luck! Let's know how you get on :)
  12. blank13

    blank13 TS Rookie

    Alright sounds good, thanks for the tip!
  13. SpiderNZ

    SpiderNZ TS Rookie

    Hey superduffio

    I have the same problem with my XPS M1530, called the Dell XPS support and even though my warranty has expired they will come a fix the issue for free.
    BTW I am in NZ and Dell support is in OZ, so you should get the same service.

  14. blank13

    blank13 TS Rookie

    Thanks for the update spidernz! Thats good to know, I haven't called them up yet, but will soon.
  15. matthew1174

    matthew1174 TS Rookie

    Before You Heat Gun Your Motherboard...

    Call Dell XPS Support 1-866-398-8977

    I have experienced the same problem with my XPS M1530 laptop. XPS support was awesome. I have never had a customer service experience, with a piece computer equipment, like I just had with Dell. Three years out of warranty and they still fixed it. I was very close to cooking my chip...very glad I didn't.
  16. Jfaber

    Jfaber TS Rookie

    Just call Dell

    I just want to say thanks. Just called Dell for my almost four year old M1530 (year past waranty) and they will be repairing it for free. Never would have though of just calling them if it wasn't for the posts here. Title of this thread can be changed to add <solved> imo.
  17. tdevost

    tdevost TS Rookie

    Hi there, I'm having the same issue with my M1530.

    I've had this laptop for four or so years, so it's well past its warranty.

    Here's what I've tried:

    - fn + power: num lock blinks while caps and scroll are solid; screen is off
    - D + power: LCD does the colour thing, turns off; computer remains running
    - the 30 second thing: nothing
    - lifting the heat sink: the bloody thing won't budge, I guess I don't have the right screwdriver; don't actually know what the hell I'm doing because I've never taken apart a laptop in my life

    Anyways I nearly broke the damn thing and chucked it out the window.

    I only need to get the bastard working at least once so I can get my files. After this I can't be bothered. I'm buying a desktop.
  18. Jacques123

    Jacques123 TS Rookie

    Hey guys,
    I did join the club and must say I am so happy I found this thread. Really a nice example of how people help each other out in the most effective way.

    I am only posting this because I want to add a detail:
    I had the same diagnose ( left led blinking, other two leds constant) and I tried to overheat the GPU. I unscrewed the cooler over the GPU, lifted it a bit and let the laptop run for ~5min. Because I earlier read something about the RAM I also took out the RAM to check. I probably put it back in the wrong order, because when I wanted to start after that I got another diagnose: left led constant, middle one blinking, right led constant. This indicates some problems with the RAM. First I thought the trick didn't work with my laptop because the same black screen appeared. But then I realized that I got another diagnose. So I looked it up, took out the RAM and put it back in the right order. And: Everything worked, just as other people told here.
    So the LED diagnose is very important and the solutions told here refer to that particular GPU problem. Not a big insight but might cause some headache to people who don't make sure they have the right LED diagnose.

    Thanks to everyone for sharing his solutions.
  19. blank13

    blank13 TS Rookie

    Hi there, hopefully you guys are still reading this thread and can give me some advice:

    I just called up Dell XPS Support and told them about the black screen. I said I suspected its the faulty NVIDIA GPU and wondered if they could send someone to have a look.

    I told him I've heard of people getting refurbished motherboards, but he said that since I'm out of warranty and that there is no note in their system about any known issues or free/extended service (for my particular service tag), the only thing I can do is a diagnostic test and then purchase some replacement parts from them.

    I called the Australian XPS Support on 1300 790877 (the call goes to a service centre in Malaysia). Did anyone have any luck with the Australian XPS Support ?

    Thanks in advance.
  20. superduffio

    superduffio TS Rookie

    Hey there. Bad luck. The best thing to do now is write a good letter to Dell in Australia. They can't ignore that. Collate all your evidence about the problem, ie. that you are certain it's the faulty nvidia chip, tell them you know about the successful class action law suit in the US, and also state that you know users in other countries have received help when out of warranty. State that you are very disappointed blah blah blah, and hope that they can help you. Best of luck!
  21. M kersting

    M kersting TS Rookie

    Bad news for anyone dealimg with this problem in Australia - Dell Australia flat out refuses to help, other than offering a technician and parts that you must shell out for...I don't know why Australians are getting the shaft on this, when the US and UK seem to have no problem getting motherboard replacement.
    Somewhat good news: a good TEMPORARY fix that I got off another forum really does work, and doesn't involve baking the GPU: use scotch tape (or any tape) to seal off all your vents while the power is on. Wrap the laptop in a towel, with the lid shut, to further ensure the vents are blocked. Let it sit like that for 25 minutes. Then unwrap and manually shut down (hold down the power button). Let it cool for 25 minutes, then boot it up. Presto, we have screen action, up and running again.
    I bought a cooling pad today, and am just letting the darn thing run. Hopefully I can buy some more time this way- bit of a pain, but doing what I can.
    I am writing a letter to Dell Australia letting them know what I think of their policies, and telling them to catch up with the rest of the world. So ticked off right now - if I had bought this laptop at home (US) it seems this would be a differnt story.
  22. Edward Richards

    Edward Richards TS Rookie

    If anybody here's worried about losing documents, files and stuff, it's really not that hard at all to retrieve them. Unscrew the four cylinder-like-shaped screws, that do not have their own removable panel, beneath the big RAM/CPU/Graphics/Fan panel and to the right of the wireless card one. When I say beneath, I do not mean taking the whole mobo out, and under there, I mean turning the laptop upside down, with the battery at the end away from you, and they're at your bottom-right.

    Two screws are on the surface and two are in their own little holes. Once done, on the side of the laptop is a small panel/flap thing, next to the I394 port. Simply pull it out, it may take a little bit of force, and voila! - there's your hard drive.

    For XPSM1530s it's a SATA connection, so if you have spare cables inside your desktop, you can just connect it in there - desktop and laptop hard drive SATA connections are the same. Otherwise, pop down to your local computer shop and ask them for a 2.5" SATA Hard Drive Caddy, or kindly ask them if they could use their own devices to somehow mount it - in ours we have a docking station, as well as many adapters. Personally, I bought one of these cheap and cheerful chinese ones, which has lasted 3 months, so far, and mounts 2.5 and 3.5 SATA and IDE - http://www.amazon.co.uk/TOPDIGI-DUA...N22C/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&qid=1341434727&sr=8-8

    Anyway back to the graphics problem - I did the overheating hair drier fix, as well as disassembling the fan and removing all the dust. It worked for ~2 days, but then died. Re-did it, and it worked for another ~2 days, and then repeated it once more, and of course... another ~2 days. Will phone Dell UK tomorrow and hope for the best!

    For other people with the problem (late onsetters, like me) I'd try this fix, as one user on another forum, said it's lasted him 8 months and still going.
  23. Matt Post

    Matt Post TS Rookie

    As previously mentioned by everybody, the hairdryer/heatgun trick is somewhat temporary but can get you by ( got me by for two months). Personally I ordered a replacement motherboard online, which took a while to find a legitimate seller. The mobo was swapped and upon reassembly the alt LED (next to the power button) was continuously blinking. I first tried resetting the bios settings and dumping the memory cache, I then held 'd' and powered up to confirm the display was functional, and finally tried the 'fn' key which made the 'num / 9' LED blink continuously. In the end I found my underlying problem was the RAM / memory was not seated completely into the slots. It took an unusually high amount of force to click in properly and now my problem is completely fixed along with a replacement harddrive for the prone to fail seagate momentum 250gb. Although this was a user error on my part during the reassembly, I thought I would share incase anyone else is still trying to res erect their dell xps 1530m's!
  24. can1631

    can1631 TS Rookie

    Salber 77,
    thank you very, very much! I had been going to dismantle my 1530 with the idea to sell some of its component 'cause I though it was definitively dead, when I tried with your advice to let it run some minute without cooling and, incredible to say, it started working again! What can I say... computers never stop surprising their users!!!

    Thanks a lot again
  25. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Be prepared for another failure soon :(

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