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dell inspiron 1545 will not start?

by dalton_edge / November 28, 2010 6:39 PM PST

my girlfriend has had this dell inspiron 1545 for about a year and a half. it has always worked with out problems and has seemed to be adequate for her needs. that is until yesterday. she brought it to me and told me it would not turn on. I asked what she did to it and she insists that she has done nothing out of the ordinary (but who knows?). Regardless, the system does very little when pressing the power button. this is what I know 1)press the power button and the power/on white light on the front of the unit comes on and stays on solid white.
2)for an oh so brief time (a second or two, maybe) it faintly sounds as if the hard drive might be trying to spin, then nothing.
3)there is no display of any kind, ever. black screen upon powering up and black screen remains until powered off. therefore, if there are any error messages or if the screen would ordinarily say something at this point, I can not read it as the monitor is not working.
4)i can press random keys at random times and get various beeps and at one point it even played a brief melody of some sort. However, i can not specify which keys, the beep sequence or the melody. i can reconize that at some point after pressing keys i do reconize what i believe to be the windows goodbye sound.

this is what learned from various sites and what i have tried:
1)all the various post telling me to remove the battery etc....to discharge stored static, this does nothing.
2)removing the battery and trying to start using only AC power. again no help.
3)removing and reseating the memory cards, the hard drive and the battery, and nope still nothing.

i am hoping for the best here and want to avoid replacement or even the expense of taking it to a service tech, as with the economy being what it is we are broke, broke, broke. please help me if you can.....thanks!

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Re: laptop will not start
by Kees_B Forum moderator / November 28, 2010 6:48 PM PST
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Could be bad RAM
by Jimmy Greystone / November 28, 2010 10:22 PM PST

Could be bad RAM, but I'd put my money on the motherboard having given out. Still, try each RAM module in each memory bank to see if that does anything. And sometimes Dell likes to hide a memory bank under the keyboard, so make sure you account for the total amount of memory that is supposed to be installed in the system.

The odds if it being bad RAM are probably pretty low, but it's one more thing to check, and if it works, is a relatively inexpensive repair. So you may as well give that a try. You can also try removing the HDD and see if it will at least get to the BIOS splash screen. I'm highly dubious of that idea, but at this point you have little to lose.

If it's not the RAM, then you're probably going to have to break it to her that the laptop is dead and repairing it would not be economical. Repairing the system would likely be well in excess of 50% of a brand new system with considerably better specs. So unless she has some kind of sentimental attachment to this particular laptop, it's probably time to toss it. Or put it up on eBay for someone who may be looking for a working display or some other part. Help offset the cost of a new one a little.

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update
by dalton_edge / December 2, 2010 12:15 PM PST

Kees

see reply to jimmy's post below

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update
by dalton_edge / December 2, 2010 12:31 PM PST

Kees and Jimmy,

I appreciate both of you getting back to me on this. I had feared the worst and made a decision to carry the unit on down to my local tech. When suddenly!!!!! I saw the light!!!! literally. A bright reflective beam of light!!!! it hit the screen just right and i could so ery faintly see the windows login page. Wow, right?

So with a little bit of research, I have personally diagnosed the problem to be something to do with the back light. So here is my new question for either one of you are both:
Is the light wired independantly from the display itself? I am wondering if the display is there and lacking just illumination and due to the suddenness and oh, girl insisting she did nothing vould it perhaps be a loose connection or pinched wire or something other. but if not and it is neccessary to replace the entire display could handy dandy old me handle the installation of such or would I need a tech. I figure I can pick one up maybe online cheap enough and spare the labor cost to get us back in working order. I can fix most anything but have no idea on this, I do not want to get in over my head ending up back at the techs door anyway. Can you give me a difficulty level 1 - 10 with 10 being most difficult and maybe throw in some pointers if you think I am going to manage doing the job myself.

thanks again - greg

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You can research that.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / December 2, 2010 1:13 PM PST
In reply to: update

Google up "How do I replace my Inspiron CCFL INVERTOR?"

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