I ordered new RAM for my old (but beloved) Dell Inspiron 14z laptop, and when it arrived I was so excited that I absent-mindedly tried to install it without shutting the system down.
Dummy me, I removed the battery but forgot to shut the system down or unplug the charger. As soon as I inserted the first of new RAM stick I saw a spark. My heart just sank.
Now the computer won’t turn on. No lights, no sound, and the screen stays black when I press the power button. I tried re-installing the original RAM and even tried a hard reset. Nothing works.
I know the battery and charger are working because I tried them with my wife’s laptop (they are the same exact model).
Is there something else I can try, or is my laptop toast? I’m hoping it’s a simple fix because the warranty ran out a LONG time ago.
Rick’s answer: I hate to be the bearer of bad news George, but your laptop’s motherboard is almost certainly fried. Your accidental attempt to install RAM into a “hot” laptop most likely resulted in a short circuit/current surge, and computer circuitry doesn’t fare all that well when subjected to those.
If your computer was responding in any way at all, I would suggest trying new RAM modules (DO NOT try the ones from your laptop in your wife’s machine!), but since it appears to be completely unresponsive I really think you’d just be wasting your time and money. I’m afraid it’s time to go shopping for a new laptop.
The good news is they have never been cheaper or a better value for the money than they are right now.
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