“My laptop won’t charge” is one of the most frequently reported issues from laptop users. Regardless of the brands and models, many users have faced the same issue.
But the reason isn’t the same for all of them. There are many elements involved in the laptop charging process. Malfunction in one of those elements can crack down the charging of your laptop. And, depending on which element is causing the issue, your approach will be different too. So, you need to find the reason first.
However, fixes are not always critical. Even most fixes are easy to do once you detect the exact reason behind why your laptop isn’t charging.
In this article, we are going to point out the reasons behind this charging issue and explain how to fix them. Let’s get started now.
Why my laptop is plugged in but not charging
There is a wide range of reasons why your laptop stops charging. From minor issues like loose cable connection to major ones like serious hardware damage, causes are diverse.
Here we are looking into some of the common reasons your laptop is not charging while plugged in.
- Faulty Charger: Whether it is the damaged cable, broken AC pins, or charging circuit dysfunctionalities, if the charger has a defect, it is quite obvious that it won’t be able to charge your laptop.
- Poor Battery Condition: Every battery has a finite life span. Therefore the battery health starts declining when it’s on a death rattle. A declining better loses its capacity to hold a charge, and it doesn’t charge anymore.
- Broken Charging Port of Laptop: Your laptop won’t charge with a broken charging port. If you harshly plug in or pull out the charger from the device, you can end up breaking the port or damaging it.
- Battery Driver Error: Battery drivers in Windows operating system can cause the error too. The drivers actually integrate external hardware (battery in this case) into the operating system. So, when the driver is dysfunctional, the system can’t detect the hardware (battery). As a consequence, your laptop battery won’t charge.
- Software Malfunctions: Charging errors can happen due to other software malfunctions. High power-consuming apps and harmful software can be the culprit also.
Just to mention, we are only discussing charging issues on laptops running on the Windows operating system. If you are a MacBook user, we have a detailed article on MacBook Pro charging issue.
How do I know if my laptop battery or charger is bad?
Battery and charger are the two primary elements involved in the charging process. Therefore high chances are, one of these can cause the issue. But how do you know if it’s the battery or the charger? The answer is simple: troubleshoot both components and check for possible defects in them.
Inspect The Charger
Start with inspecting the charger. That includes the adapter and the power cable. Check if the AC pins are broken. If one of the pins is discolored or damaged, the adapter cannot conduct the current from the outlet. In case of a short circuit, check if the adapter is overheated, has a burn mark, or is there any smell like a plastic burn.
Checking the power cable is comparatively easy. Go along the full length of the cable, examine it for possible bends, breaks, burns, and unusual warped flexing. If a short circuit or overload burns the power cord, it should be visible.
If your charger is looking visibly okay still not charging, use it to charge another laptop with the same power ratings. If that laptop is charging, your charger is fine. If not, you might have to get a new one.
Test Battery Condition
The battery shows certain signs when it’s on a decline. Don’t overlook when you see symptoms like overheating, longer than usual charging time, short run time i.e. charge draining quickly, and sudden shutdowns. Besides, both Windows and iOS will show warnings to replace the battery. You can check the battery status on Ubuntu laptops also.
You can check battery condition by removing it. Just shut down the laptop, eject the battery, plug the charger, and turn on the laptop. If your laptop functions properly, battery is the culprit here.
In the worst-case scenario, you may see the mouse touchpad popping out. Open the laptop back cover, and you will see a swollen battery. Bust a move before the battery reaches this stage. Otherwise, it may create more chaos by damaging other hardware on your laptop.
In such situations, get a new battery. Depending on brands and models, a new battery will cost you around $100 to $150 in the US market. While in the UK market, £60 to £100 is the approximate price range.
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What do you do when your laptop won’t charge?
There’s a list of actions you can take to deal with the charging issue on your laptop. Try the following approaches to find and fix why your laptop won’t charge.
Check hardware issues
Troubleshoot the hardware issues first. You have checked the charger and battery earlier. So, if they are causing trouble, you already know it.
Now look for other concerns. Plug the charger into a laptop’s charging port and see if there’s any loose connection. In case the charger juggles or falls out of the charging port, the power jack of your laptop must be completely or partially broken. It needs repairing. You can also remove the back cover of your laptop and check for possible flaw’s inside.
Hardware issues are really critical ones. If you have the competence to repair them, you may try. But we recommend you ask for professional assistance if required.
Use right power adapter
Every laptop has a recommended power rating. Low-power adapters won’t be able to charge your laptop properly. On the other hand, an over-power charger can cause serious damage to your laptop, including burning down the chagrin circuit, and even worse, the mainboard.
Check the original charger that came with your laptop. Voltage, current, and power ratings must be written on the power adapter. Otherwise, Google it with the model number.
Update Battery Drivers
Go through the following steps to update Windows drivers for batteries.
Step-1: Open the device manager from control panel. You can also search for “Device Manager” in Windows start menu.
Step-2: Select Batteries in the device manager. When it expands, you will see two drivers: 1. Microsoft AC Adapter, 2. Microsoft ACPI-Compliant Control Method Battery.
Step-3: Right-click to “Microsoft AC Adapter” and choose the “Update Driver” option. Do the same for the “Microsoft ACPI-Compliant Control Method Battery” later.
Step-4: Finally, when the pop-up window appears, select “Search automatically for drivers” to update the battery drivers of your laptop.
If the updated driver is already installed, yet the problem isn’t solved, you can try by reinstalling the drivers. Click to Uninstall Device, then Restart your computer. The drivers will automatically reinstall and fix the errors.
Check Windows Power Settings
To make it clear, Windows OS does not have any settings that can resist your laptop from charging. Yet, some of the settings can cause charging errors. So it’s better to be sure about all the power settings.
Go to Windows Settings > System > Power & sleep. There you can customize Screen and Sleep time. Proceed further to Additional Power Settings to discover more settings. You try customizing your existing Power Plan and see if the charging problem is solved.
Power reset your laptop
Sometimes laptops stop charging when there is a disturbance in the process. It’s a self-protective mechanism. Perform a power reset in such a situation.
Step-1: Shut down your computer and unplug the charger.
Step-2: Then remove that battery and all the peripheral devices from your computer.
Step-3: Now press the power button and hold it for about 15-25 seconds. It will drain the capacitors.
Step-4: After that, put the battery in place and turn on the laptop.
Step-5: Finally, connect the charger and see if it solves the problem.
If you realize the battery is overheated, leave it for some time to cool down before connecting to the laptop again.
Run a security check
Some unauthorized third-party apps can put you in trouble. They can cause such an atypical power drain that your laptop battery and charger aren’t capable of dealing with. Run a security scan using the Windows defender or reliable antivirus software to get rid of the harmful software and apps from your computer.
Run a troubleshooter when your laptop won’t charge
If none of the above measures works, try a power troubleshooter on your laptop.
Step-1: FirstOpen the windows settings and go to “Update & Security.”
Step-2: Then select “Troubleshoot.” There you will find “Additional Troubleshooters.” Click on it.
Step-3: Under the “Additional Troubleshooters,” choose power and click to “Run the troubleshoot.” It will detect the issue. And depending on the issue, the troubleshooter can fix it too.
Change the power outlet
Maybe the problem isn’t with your laptop; it could be an external issue as well. Connect the charge to a different power outlet. If the laptop is charging, then fault is in the power outlet you regularly use. Call an electrician to check the line current and avoid using the outlet till then. However, the best practice is to use a separate outlet for charging your laptop.
By and large
If you followed all the instructions so far, you should be able to fix the charging issue of your laptop. We have covered all the best-known fixes that you can try on your own.
However, if you see your laptop won’t charge despite all of these attempts, it is time to go for professional on-site support. Find the nearest service center, and ask them for help.