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dell c400 battery won't charge

  • hi,
    just recently my c400 stopped charging all batteries when connected to an ac power adapter. it's using a 70watt ac adapter which to my knowledge is compatible with it. i have tried 2 different ac adapters and 3 different batteries, upgraded the bios to a12, and it still will not charge a battery. when i connect the ac adapter up to the system when it is running on battery power, the led on the ac adapter goes out as if it has a power-to-ground short and tripped a resettable fuse or something. i've read other similar stories here on the message board and my laptop is out of warranty. my guess is that the system board is fried. is there a way i can obtain a schematic of the board so that i can check the fuses/mosfets on the board and make sure they are good. a new board would be too expensive. thanks.
  • Hi,

    Sorry I can't help you....thats because i have the same problem with a Latitude c400. The battery just doesnt charge....even if in the bios it says charging and under Windows XP as well....the battery stays flat empty.It seems like a common problem to Dell laptops but nobody seems to have an answer except change the motherboard or something very complicated and expensive for a plain user ....

    If anyone has a different idea please let us know. 

  • Got a similar problem with a Latitude CPx H... Recently bought a new battery, but the LED indicating "charging" stops shining after approx. 10 seconds and the battery stays empty. Even if BIOS and WinXP show "charging" status all the time.

     

    Greets ReneMT

  • yeah, this is obviously an issue dell will not address. it's clear from the amount of posts on this message board that this is a common issue. it's probably cheaper for them to handle it on a case-by-case basis rather than actually do more testing and revalidate their designs and perhaps issue a recall. all i can say is their validation process is lacking, or the part quality in their IC components are horrible. i'm going to ship it back to where i bought it, fortunately they still cover it under their warranty. this will be the last time i ever touch a dell.
  • I just updated the BIOS to A12 and now the battery is charging !!! But that doesn't seem to work for everyone...By the way I updated my BIOS from the harddrive in Windows XP and it worked perfectly.

  • Could you tell me how you did the upgrade? I've gor version A12 and can't charge... When I tried to update to the latest version (A14) I got a "battery error" because the battery is discharged - however I even can't charge it :-(((

    Is there a way to force the BIOS update to run without checking battery status?

    Sincerly

    ReneMT

  • VICTORY!!!!

    Oh, I'm so glad! My battery now is charging!!! I applied the latest BIOS update (A14) to my old latitude CPx H. The clue was, to rund the actual update file (CPTX_A14.EXE) on a floppy based update an pass it the /FORCEIT parameter. Some seconds later my BIOS was updatet. I rebootet an my battery is CHARGING! Great!

    Well, I'm still student, you know, currently having little money and needing a laptop for studies... I got my Latitude from a company for which I worked on some software projects as present. But it was in bad condition: I already replaced keyboard and hardisk. The battery was not charging from the beginning and a few days ago I decided to buy a new one for approx. 80.00 Euro (no original DELL, would be 160.00 Euro!). And than it was not charging... I was so angry! But now I hope everything will go fine!

    Greets

    ReneMT, Germany

  • The reason your laptop is not charging your battery is due to "sorry for the Technical stuff" a low voltage analog switch or a FET (Field Effective Transistor)that helps to control the charging circuit on the board. I have repaired a great number of these boards and you are welcome to look at my website. http://laptoplogic.mysite.wanadoo-members.co.uk

    It is not necessary to replace the board, it can be repaired by someone with the needed skills. This will also save you money!!!

  • The reason your c400 laptop is not charging your battery is due to "sorry for the Technical stuff" a low voltage analog switch or a FET (Field Effective Transistor)that helps to control the charging circuit on the board. I have repaired a great number of these boards and you are welcome to look at my website. http://laptoplogic.mysite.wanadoo-members.co.uk

    It is not necessary to replace the board, it can be repaired by someone with the needed skills. This will also save you money!!!