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External Laptop Battery Charger


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bnelse92's Avatar
bnelse92 bnelse92 is offline
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15-Mar-2007, 10:40 PM #1
External Laptop Battery Charger
I have a Dell Inspiron 600m laptop and the battery will no longer charge. I know this is a common problem with these and I have already confirmed that it is not fixable (unless I replace the motherboard). As this is a few years old, it would not be worth that expense. It runs fine when plugged in and it will run fine on only battery if the battery happens to have a charge from some other source and I really don't need a new laptop...so...I was wondering if there are any external battery chargers available for this or if anyone has ever built their own. I am pretty handy so I might even be willing to try building one for myself, but I don't know alot about battery tech. It is a Litium Ion battery and I know it should be pulse charged. Would this be a fairly simple do it yourself Project?
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16-Mar-2007, 06:05 AM #2
It is not easy.

The LiOn battery needs to be monitored while charged (you will note that there will be several connections to it) and any incorrect charge will be dangerous to both the battery and anyone near it.
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12-Jun-2007, 10:27 PM #3
Same problem here with a D600. The tech support guy at Dell says I need a new motherboard. Just to charge a battery???!! I too want to locate an external battery charger but can't find one. Did you ever find one?
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12-Jun-2007, 11:15 PM #4
Again I doubt that such a device exists. Every laptop model will have specific battery control electronics designed for the exact battery size and characteristic etc, so you are unlikely to find any "generic" unit.

As you may be aware, there have been multi-million dollar recalls on some batteries that were outside the specs, so nobody will lightly enter a third party manufacture arrangement for such a critical (safety-wise) component for one specific model?
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13-Jun-2007, 08:20 AM #5
You will not find an external charger for Li-Ion batteries, other than single cell models. If you look around, you'll also find you can't buy Lithium batteries in anything but finished modules for the same reason.

The charging circuit for most laptops is indeed on the MB, and if that is dead, you need a replacement.

Are you sure this is not simply the power jack in the machine being loose from abuse and requiring soldering and/or replacement?
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13-Jun-2007, 06:00 PM #6
Thanks guys for the comments.

My power input pin is fine. In fact I had a new motherboard installed about a year ago due to bent pins on the USB connector so this is very frustrating. I guess I'll just have to live with AC (always solid connection) or else carry around a 12V battery pack that I can input for power via the cigarette connector adapter. A shame to have a laptop than cannot run on a brand new battery.
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19-Jun-2007, 02:33 PM #7
I have also been told the same thing by Dell support. I have a Dell Inspiron B120. How are you plugging it in with stricly the AC?
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19-Jun-2007, 02:53 PM #8
Have you ever replaced the battery? I would bet it's just the battery has some dead cells and I just replaced the li-ion one I have in a Compaq because it would only run about a half hour and die.
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19-Jun-2007, 04:25 PM #9
If I take my battery out, and it will not stay on with it just plugged in to the wall... This would probably mean that i need the motherboard or AC power jack replaced... Is this correct?
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19-Jun-2007, 05:04 PM #10
That would be the top suspect, but I'd have to examine it to be sure. Determining this requires a physical inspection of the jack.
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aikidoka aikidoka is offline
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28-Jun-2007, 05:47 PM #11
external battery charger at JCbarn.com
I have an hp laptop that had the same problem - the AC connection was loose, the battery would never charge, so the computer was useless unless I got a new motherboard. I was told that soldering could be tried, but often isn't successful, or isn't successful for very long. I found an external battery charger for sale at JCBarn.com. It cost about $70.00. They have them for all kinds of laptop batteries, including your Dell 600. I then bought another battery, so that I always have one charging while the other one is in use. That might work for you, too.
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28-Jun-2007, 07:39 PM #12
Quote:
Originally Posted by aikidoka
I was told that soldering could be tried, but often isn't successful, or isn't successful for very long.
Actually, unless you've already damaged the MB beyond repair, the replacement of the laptop jack is almost always successful. I have no idea who told you that, but a proper repair can last as long, or longer than the factory installation.

I'll bet the person that gave you that advice has some stake in selling you a new MB.
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28-Jun-2007, 08:21 PM #13
Have to agree with JohnWill here.

The original is wave soldered during manufacure, a replacement is manually soldered.

Providing the person doing it knows what they are doing a superior and more durable solution should always result, as long as the motherboard is not beyond repair.
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29-Jun-2007, 09:45 AM #14
If there's any doubt, I sometimes add a bead of RTV to help keep the jack in place.
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