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2 Bronze

Help with 1501 power problem

In a duration of about 1 week, my original Dell battery (9 cell, 85 Wh) went from able to fully charge to holding no charge.  After going through the battery failure troubleshooting tests recommended on this forum, I determined that I needed a new battery.  I bought an equivalent battery.  In the meantime, the laptop ran fine on AC power (with or without the old battery in it). When I installed the new battery, the battery charged completely to 100%.  I unplugged the AC, and within 1 minute, the power completely failed (as in the computer shut off instantly).  What is going on?  Is this a battery problem or a more serious problem?  If it is an internal problem, is it worth spending $$ to get it fixed, or do I need a new laptop?  I am upset b/c the computer is under 1.5 years old.  Doh!
Replies (9)
3 Argentum

If you press the charge indicator on the battery, do all the LEDs turn on?


If you press and hold the charge indicator for 8 seconds, do any of the lights stay on?



2 Bronze

I am having the same problem with my 1501.  The computer does not recognize the origional battery.  Performance is extremly slow, especially for typing in word or any IE boxes.  Then I pull the battery and everything works great.  The battery will run the system for an hour and a half, just like new but it creates the performance issues and is not recognized as of just a couple of days ago.  The computer thinks it is still plugged in when running from the battery too.....  I'm out of warranty on this, but the battery works great with the exception of not being recognized and causing performance issues.  Is there possibly a recall on some of these batteries or is Dell covering defective batteries out of warranty?  All lights on the battery show green when the button is pressed, all go off after holding for several seconds.  I have updated the bios as well.  I don't want to buy a new battery, this is a lithium-ion battery and should be able to discharge more than the ten or so times that I have unplugged the laptop and run it on the battery.  I have the 6 cell battery if it matters.  


Thanks for any information.

3 Argentum

@qtoche wrote:

this is a lithium-ion battery and should be able to discharge more than the ten or so times that I have unplugged the laptop and run it on the battery.

The number of times you have unplugged and dischared the battery has very little to do with how long the battery lasts.  See te article linked to here for more information on what determines battery life.

2 Bronze

The main problem here is that the battery cells are still good.  They hold a good charge and will run the computer for about the same amount of time that they did when the computer was new.  There has to be somehing wrong either with other hardware or with software in some way, apart from the actual li-ion cells.  I can't see this many people having problems with battery or motherboard hardware starting at the same time.  I was thinking that there might be something incompatible with the SP3 update for XP.  I just removed the update but the problem still persists so I am not sure about this.  For some reason I do not have any availiable restore points either.  I can't remember when I upgraded to IE7 either, I'd like to roll back that one now too if I can figure out how to do so without a complete re-installation.  I'll give my set-up information just in case somebody notices something.


XP Pro SP2 (Just downgraded from SP3) <This is my own retail XP installation if that matters>

Turion TL-56

3 gig 667

160 gig hd

radeon express 1150 with new drivers and Catalyst control center as of today's date

Updated bios, processor drivers, motherboard drivers, dvd driver, and ethernet driver as of today's date



Office 2003

Visual Studio Pro 2005

Adobe Reader 8


McAfee Security Center



I lost the ability to dual boot into Vista Business a few months ago.  I'd like to check if this problem occurs on Vista, so I'll re-install on my separate partition for vista tomorrow and test it then.  Does anybody have a dual-boot set up?  I don't know why I lost the ability to boot into Vista, I'll have to research that problem too.


Thanks :)


2 Bronze

Yes, if I press the charge indicator, all the LEDs turn on and if I hold it for 8 seconds none of the lights stay on.  Thanks for your help.
7 Thorium

XP Service Pack 3 should not be the problem. It works fine on the insprion 1501.


Dual Booting is very easy. Install XP on your first partition and then install Vista on your second partition.


Also if you have only lost the ability to boot into vista, insert your vista disc, press F12 and boot from it opt to do a repair. It should repair the boot menu, this may or may of happened after installing / uninstalling SP3 but I doubt XP SP3 is causing your battery problems.



What does Fn and F3 tell you?

Message Edited by natakuc4 on 10-26-2008 06:38 PM
Dr Philip Yip
Tech Enthusiast and Author of the Unofficial Dell Windows Reinstallation Guide

Windows FAQs and OEM Downloads

#IDoNotWorkFor Dell
2 Bronze

Didn't really get closure to my original question.  My post was kind of sabatoged by someone with a similar problem (but it actaully is different than the problem I was having).  Can someone still help with my original problem?  Bottom line, do I spend money fixing it, or do I spend money on a new system?

3 Argentum

Try this, or maybe you've done this then what happens at each point:  Charge the battery.  When it is fully charged make sure Windows says it is at 100% and also press the buttons to make sure all lights come on.  Then unplug the laptop, keep an eye on the battery meter, does it go down really quickly or does the laptop shut off after a minute but the meter is still at 100% (or nearly 100%).  Does a warning pop up when the battery gets to 5 or 10% (it should, unless you've changed those settings).  If/when the battery dies press the buttons and see if now none of the lights come on.  Basically I want to see here if both Windows and the battery itself are reporting the same charge levels both when it's fully charged and when depleted.


Another thing, which will probably help even more, do you have another laptop that uses the same battery that you can test it in?  I think the 1501 is the same as the 1505/6400 which are pretty popular maybe someone has one you can try for a few minutes, or someone has a battery that they know works in their laptop that you can try in yours.


I can't imagine a new, working battery could discharge all it's power in a few minutes, I think that would fry the computer circuits or start a fire or something.  So I would guess either it's not actually getting fully charged, or the battery is no good (even though it is new maybe it's a dud). 

2 Bronze

Thanks for your response - I appreciate your suggestions.  After my initial problem with the battery, I have had success now when I use the laptop unplugged w/ the new battery.  The new battery holds it's charge (windows says its 100%) and when I unplug, it does not immediately power off nor does the battery meter drop.  I agree with you that the new battery shouldn't be the issue especially since the lights are indicating it is fine.  Thanks again.  I'll keep my finger's crossed that I keep experiencing normal behaivor from the battery!
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