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  1. #1
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    Used computer just shuts down

    About 8 months ago I was looking at helping get a used laptop computer for an older lady neighbor. A fellow that presented as a technician with a company name of "Affordable Tek" here in St Augustine said he had a used Dell laptop that would be fine for her to just visit nature, national geo, and health sites.

    I wrote him this note,
    Hi Teddy,
    I'm the tallish guy who met you this past weekend and talked about computers. Somehow I managed to misplace your 2 business cards, so I went by the car shop the other day and picked up another one.
    So first question is do you still have that $75 Dell laptop that
    I was asking about for that lady neighbor of mine? I caught up with her Sun morn and ask her if she had made any decisions on a computer. She told me she was waiting until her daughter came to visit over the Easter weekend. ...so it was delay again.

    In the meantime I told her about yours, and she seemed to be interested, and of course the price was better than the ones at the flea market. So here is what I am thinking since it is a holiday weekend that you probably want to spend with your family. Why don't you come by my place at the Spanish Trails mobile home park and drop off that Dell. Then I can corner her and her daughter sometime during the weekend and sell them on your computer. If need be I can give you some sort of surety deposit....


    Anyway that is what I am thinking for this Easter weekend


    He brought the computer over to my house, and gave me a little demo. Surprisingly it shut down right in the middle of an operation. He said no problem, just a little glitch.

    The next day I was playing around a little bit with it to familiarize myself with it and go ahead and bookmark a few websites for her. The computer shut down on me 3 times during that period. I called the gentleman and told him it was a faulty computer , and I could not go forward with showing it to her in that condition that I could not explain.

    He stated it was 'just a setting', and he would see that it was fixed. He now claims it was a bad battery.
    My question to the forum, is it possible that these multiply shutdowns would occur due to a bad battery IF the unit was plugged into an external power source?

    I often take the battery completely out of my laptop, if I am plugged into an external power supply. So I think he is trying to bullshit me by this explanation of a bad battery??


  2. #2
    jwoods
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    It could be several things...I would open up the laptop and see how much dust has accumulated inside.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    It's possible that it's battery/charging circuit related.

    I wouldn't attempt to open it, any evidence of 'tampering' seen might be enough for you to get stuck with it.

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  5. #4
    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    I suspect jwoods is correct. Its most likely an accumulation of dust on the CPU heatsink, causing the CPU to overheat and shut down. Laptops are extremely difficult to open up to the point where you can clean the heatsink. Sometimes you can fix it by blowing air through the exhaust vents but I would steer clear if I were you.

    Jerry

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    I've come across where a laptop wouldn't run with a battery in and can't remember now if that was a motherboard problem, but see if it still shuts down with the battery removed.

    HWMonitor will tell you the state of the battery and if there is an overheating problem.

    http://www.majorgeeks.com/files/details/hwmonitor.html

    What else it will tell you will be dependent on the number and type of sensors the laptop has.

  7. #6
    jwoods
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    If you haven't already purchased it, have the guy either fix it, or walk away.

  8. #7
    Silver Lounger wavy's Avatar
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    If she can possibly afford another 2 bills get a new one w/ W7. not worth the effort to t/s a $75 laptop. Should be many on ebay cheaper that work.
    David

    Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwoods View Post
    If you haven't already purchased it, have the guy either fix it, or walk away.
    I never did 'purchase' it because:
    a) it was not for me but a retired lady that lives very close by (I was looking for her)
    b} I became distrustful of the fellow trying to sell it, as he brushed the problem off as just 'some settings'

    I did not want that lady friend to get involved with a used machine that was going to require service from this guy.

    Subsequently the fellow claimed I had purchased the unit rather than simply gave him a deposit on the unit till I could show it to the lady and her daughter over Easter weekend, ......and he claimed I would be responsible for a 25% restocking fee,...a restocking fee on a used machine that was faulty !...I don't think so !!

    So now he picked up his machine and is stone-walling me on the return of MY DEPOSIT.

    I'm going to have to spend the money to take him to small claims court,...for my satisfaction, and hopefully so he doesn't treat some other person that way. I've tried to discredit him in the social media, and through Florida consumer affairs.
    https://www.facebook.com/Affordable-...69355/reviews/

    I've tried to make this fellow aware that he will likely lose the court case, and if he subsequently fails to pay the judgement amount it will effect his credit rating for the next 20 years. ....all over his failure to simply return my DEPOSIT in full for a faulty used computer he tried to push off on me!!

  10. #9
    WS Lounge VIP mrjimphelps's Avatar
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    You know, it's just possible that he got stuck with a faulty computer, and now he is trying to unload it on you.

    I had a boss like that once. He often got stung by others, and so he would pass the problems on to the customers.

  11. #10
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    You haven't mentioned the laptop model and vintage. There were several laptops manufactured c. 2005-2010 that had class-action lawsuits regarding overheating problems, some involving nVidia graphics chips. Do a google search for "Carideo Settlement" or "Lundell Settlement", to name a few.

    If yours is one of those (and you're going to keep it), then opening it up and cleaning vents, fan, and repasting cpu/gpu will help keep it running longer, but the problem will ultimately return. (Dell's response in Lundell, for example, was to simply extend the warranty period, which didn't actually solve the problem.)

  12. #11
    Silver Lounger wavy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beiland View Post
    I never did 'purchase' it because:
    a) it was not for me but a retired lady that lives very close by (I was looking for her)
    b} I became distrustful of the fellow trying to sell it, as he brushed the problem off as just 'some settings'

    I did not want that lady friend to get involved with a used machine that was going to require service from this guy.

    Subsequently the fellow claimed I had purchased the unit rather than simply gave him a deposit on the unit till I could show it to the lady and her daughter over Easter weekend, ......and he claimed I would be responsible for a 25% restocking fee,...a restocking fee on a used machine that was faulty !...I don't think so !!

    So now he picked up his machine and is stone-walling me on the return of MY DEPOSIT.

    I'm going to have to spend the money to take him to small claims court,...for my satisfaction, and hopefully so he doesn't treat some other person that way. I've tried to discredit him in the social media, and through Florida consumer affairs.
    https://www.facebook.com/Affordable-...69355/reviews/

    I've tried to make this fellow aware that he will likely lose the court case, and if he subsequently fails to pay the judgement amount it will effect his credit rating for the next 20 years. ....all over his failure to simply return my DEPOSIT in full for a faulty used computer he tried to push off on me!!
    Better you than me. I might have tried to retrofit his skull w/ that notebook. But really good luck w/ the small claims court. Judge Judy to the rescue
    David

    Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.

  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrjimphelps View Post
    You know, it's just possible that he got stuck with a faulty computer, and now he is trying to unload it on you.
    This guy is in the business, not just an individual who got stuck with a faulty computer

    ....and with a relationship he hoped to establish with me, he wanted recommendations to other residents of the retirement community.
    Last edited by satrow; 2015-11-11 at 04:30.

  14. #13
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    BTW, be aware that the computer itself was picked up by the gentleman about a week after I informed him it was unsuitable to be shown to my neighbor lady friend.
    So I am no longer in possession of it, and have simply asked for the refund of the surety deposit I gave him.

    UPDATE:
    Just today I have been inform by him that he will refund my money next month. Seems he reread the original email I sent him saying that I was acting to help him sell this laptop to a neighbor, not acting to purchase it for myself, so the check I gave him was a 'surety deposit'. He also reviewed the copy of my check that I gave him that day, and sure enough it says 'computer DEPOSIT" not purchase. I think he realized that the judge in small claims court was going to find my story accurate and substantiated with emails and a copy of the check.

    Now we'll see if i get my refund back?

  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sudo15 View Post
    ... see if it still shuts down with the battery removed.

    HWMonitor will tell you the state of the battery and if there is an overheating problem.

    http://www.majorgeeks.com/files/details/hwmonitor.html

    What else it will tell you will be dependent on the number and type of sensors the laptop has.
    ditto!

  16. #15
    Silver Lounger wavy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beiland View Post


    Now we'll see if i get my refund back?
    If he was gonna give it back don't you think he would have done it already? Maybe you have one of those TV shows that embarrass the wrong doers? I would go straight to small claims, you can always cancel (well not sure about that). Do not give him time to take a vacation.

    David

    Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.

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