I heard from a reader with a problem.  She wrote: “I’m having an issue with my 4-year-old laptop. I can’t get it to hold a charge. It works when I have it plugged in, but as soon as the plug is removed, I lose all power. It won’t charge at all.”


Usually, when a laptop won’t charge, the issue is the battery,  power adapter, or adapter port.  Since you laptop works when it’s plugged in, I don’t think the issue is the adapter or the port. It sounds like you may need a new battery.


But before we replace it, we might as well try removing it (If it is removable. On some devices like my Surface Pro, it is not.)  and replacing it.  Turn off the laptop and unplug the adapter before removing the battery.  Flip your laptop over and you should be able to figure out where the battery compartment is.  If you don’t see it right away, check the support section of the manufacturer’s website for instructions. Remove it for about five minutes, then put back in place.  Then attempt to let it charge for a bit. If that doesn’t help, it’s time to replace the battery.

If it’s a removable battery, you can just look to see what kind your device needs and order a replacement from the manufacturer or another place that offers replacement batteries. Make sure you get the specific battery for your device. If it’s not easily removable, you’ll need to take it to a professional to see if it can be replaced.