What are common laptop problems and solutions?


We often get asked ‘What are common laptop problems?’ Let’s find out…

Laptop computers are portable, convenient and efficient. You can do so much with them! They allow you to browse the internet, write documents, watch movies, listen to music and even play games; all this at your fingertips.

Unfortunately not everything is smooth sailing when it comes to laptops though. No technology will ever be perfect but these machines aren’t exactly flawless either. Here are some of the most common issues related to laptop computers:

1) Low Battery Life

This has always been an issue for laptops since they first came onto the market because their batteries don’t last as long as desktop computers. These days however there are more reasons than ever for low battery life; one of the main reasons is that the battery itself degrades over time and you’ll end up with either a battery that can’t hold much power or worse, won’t charge at all. If you are in Melbourne, you can get a new battery from here.

2) Freezing / Lagging / Slow Response Time

When we say freezing we’re not referring to when your computer suddenly stops working for no apparent reason (more on this later), but instead when it suddenly lags in response time when you press buttons or try to move around your screen. This problem often occurs when you have too many programs open at once so make sure to close any unneeded tabs before playing games etc. If the lag persists then there could be another problem and you should take your laptop in for repairs under warranty if possible.

3) Faulty Battery

It’s pretty self-explanatory; make sure your laptop is off and disconnected from the power outlet before removing the battery. If it seems like your battery is taking too long to charge, or not holding its charge as long as usual then you may need a new one (and this applies for any other removable parts such as RAM). It’s always best to try some basic fixes before replacing parts though, such as cleaning out the inside of your laptop with compressed air or replacing the thermal paste on your CPU. Finally, overheating can cause all kinds of problems so be sure that there are no clogged vents or fans.

4) Broken Screen / No Display

The most common laptop problem is a broken screen or no display. Whether the glass has shattered, the backlight has burnt out, or you’re experiencing poor color quality it’s always best to try some simple fixes before paying for an expensive repair. If your laptop’s screen is completely black then make sure that the brightness isn’t turned all of the way down and if the colors are faded or distorted then plugging it into an external monitor could reveal whether you have a faulty video adapter cable.

5) Battery Failure / Power Issues

If your battery seems to be dying too quickly after fully charging, or otherwise not working as well as usual then it may just need to be replaced . You can either choose to buy a new one from your manufacturer or an aftermarket company that sells batteries for a much lower cost.

6) Slow to wake up

If your laptop seems to be taking a long time to turn on, or regularly freezes when you try to open an application then it might be due to a full memory, which can often be resolved by freeing up the hard drive space. You can check how much space is being used by going into “Settings” and selecting “System.” Then select “Storage,” followed by “Used Space.” If it says anything above 20GB then you’re going- just delete anything that’s unnecessary and you should notice a significant improvement.

7) Blue Screen Errors

Blue screen errors are typically the result of faulty drivers or old hardware that needs updating. In some cases, your laptop might even have a virus, which can usually be resolved with the help of an antivirus application.


8) Fan Noise

If your fan seems to always be on full blast, it might be because you need to give the insides of the computer a thorough cleaning; all you need to do is remove the top-most layer (usually held in place by four screws) and carefully vacuum away any dust or other foreign materials.

9) Keyboard Malfunctioning

If certain keys are not working as they should then there could be something stuck underneath them that’s blocking their movement; if this is true for several keyboard keys then you’ll probably also notice that some of them produce different letters than what they’re supposed to. To fix this you’ll need to take your laptop apart and clean the keyboard with some isopropyl alcohol (not too much, though) on a cotton swab or piece of cloth (for example, an old t-shirt). Be very careful not to break any of the small key components; if possible, get somebody else to hold your laptop steady while you work on it.

10) Shaking / Vibrating Laptop

Does your laptop seem like it’s about to fall off your desk? This might be because it’s sitting somewhat precariously; if possible, get another book or something similar and stick it underneath one of the legs that supports its weight. Also, check out how level your laptop is; if it’s tilted to one side, that might be the problem. Make sure that you tighten all of the screws and latches on your laptop so it won’t be so wobbly and easy to set off balance.

11)  Overheating Laptop

Does your laptop cut out at random times often? This could be because of overheating; when a CPU becomes too hot, it cuts down its speed in order to prevent damage from heat-related stress. Check out a tutorial here on how to open up your laptop and clean out any dust / dirt that might be clogging up your cooling vents (look around the CPU fan, for example). If necessary, purchase some desktop computer fans or other cooling devices and set them up around the laptop to help it stay cool.

12) Screen Resolution and Colours

If your laptop’s screen resolution is poor quality, this can also be a bit of a turn-off if you like watching movies or playing video games on it. Make sure that you get the best possible screen resolution; it doesn’t cost much extra money and people will notice the difference when they see your laptop in action! Don’t forget about colours either – many laptops suffer from over-saturated colours (too bright), dullness (too dark) or other issues such as blue / red colour casts. These things really affect how good an image looks, so check out online reviews before buying to make sure you’re not getting a faulty product.

13) Laptop Screen Upside-Down

You can follow the steps outlined in our guide to fix a computer screen that is upside-down.

14) Laptop Won’t Turn On

This is a very common problem. You wake up one morning to find that your laptop is not turning on – when you know for sure that it did work perfectly the night before. I have some troubleshooting tips that you can try before getting in touch with us.

I am a computer engineer holding a bachelor's degree in Computer Science, complemented by a Master's in Business Administration from University of Strathclyde, Scotland. I currently work as a Senior IT Consultant in Melbourne, Australia. With over 15 years of...