Today I show how to fix a known video problem on some HP laptops using bubble wrap.

Most likely the fix is not permanent but this will buy you some time, enough to backup personal files or even use the laptop until you get a new one. There is no guaranty this fix work 100%.

Here are some HP models affected by this known video failure problem: HP Pavilion dv2000, dv6000, dv9000, tx1000 tablet PC, Compaq 700, v3000, v6000 and probably some others.

If you know more models, please mention them in comments after this post.

CAUSE OF THE PROBLEM:

As I know, the video problem somehow related to NVIDIA graphics chip located on the motherboard. Overtime the graphics chip separates from the motherboard and the video fails.

SYMPTOMS OF THE PROBLEM:

The computer turns on and all LEDs light up but there is no video on the screen or external monitor. The internal screen remains completely black and blank.

I found this trick mentioned by Walliot in this post. This trick called “towel fix” and used to fix “no video” issue in xbox360.

HOW TO FIX:

1. Remove the battery and hard drive.
2. Plug the AC adapter and turn on the laptop. Make sure it’s is actually on, all LEDs should work.
3. Wrap it up with towels so all air intakes are closed.
4. Keeps the laptop wrapped in the towel for about one hours.
5. Unplug the AC adapter from the wall the let it cool down (do not move it for a while).
6. Unwrap the laptop and try tuning it on.

I didn’t really believe that this trick might work and tried it just because of curiosity but… IT WORKED!!!!

#1. HP tx1000 Tablet PC repair.

First, I tried this fix on a failed HP tx1000 Tablet PC.
I didn’t have paper towels at work but I had plenty of bubble wrap.
I closed it in a tablet mode (with hard drive and battery removed), plugged the AC adapter and wrapped the laptop properly in bubble wrap.

After that I just waited for about two hours and unplugged AC adapter from the wall. Waited for about 30 minutes and tried turning it on.
Success!!! It starts with with video.

I just couldn’t stop and tried the fix on another one.

#2. HP Pavilion dv6000.
This is a different model with very similar failure symptoms. It failed exactly the same way as the first one.

This time I did something extra. To make sure there is no cool air coming into the case through the bubble wrap, I closed all air vents with sticky tape.

After that I turned it on from AC adapter (again with hard drive and battery removed) and wrapped the base.

It was running like that for about 60-70 minutes but then I noticed that all LED lights went off.

Not sure what happened. Maybe the motherboard overheated too much and shut down on its own. Anyway, I didn’t touch it for about 30 minutes and let it cool down.

My fix was successful again! The laptop turned on with video and booted to the desktop.

HOW THIS FIX WORKS:

Here’s my understanding of how this fix works.
When you run a laptop wrapped in towels (bubble wrap in my case), it gets very hot because there is no air circulation inside the heatsink.

The heatsink gets so hot that it melt solder between the chip and motherboard and the video chip gets resoldered to the motherboard.

Now I have to test for how long this fix last. :)

RELATED POSTS:

Also read backing the motherboard in an oven and how to reflow failed NVIDIA graphics chip with a heat gun.

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181 Comments

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  1. 181
    Caleb Says:

    Hi. I have an HP Pavilion DV6000 the is getting no power at all. The blue led that my charger plugs into is lit but nothing else is. Fans wont turn on, makes no noise and is virtually lifeless. Also battery does not work. Help?

  2. 180
    yousaf Says:

    Ok I shall try heat gun now. Tnx a lot bro :-)

  3. 179
    cj2600 Says:

    @ yousaf,

    I tried it once more. And this time its screen turned on after half hour but I didn’t turned it off and after 10mins it automaticaly turned off. I let it cool down and then conected harddisk but it was again black screen. What do u think now? Do u think using heatgun will b better?

    Heatguy is more effective. You have nothing to lose, correct? Try it.

  4. 178
    yousaf Says:

    @cj2600
    Hi. I tried it once more. And this time its screen turned on after half hour but I didn’t turned it off and after 10mins it automaticaly turned off. I let it cool down and then conected harddisk but it was again black screen. What do u think now? Do u think using heatgun will b better??

  5. 177
    cj2600 Says:

    @ yousaf,

    I removed hard drive and battery, turned on my gateway cx210x and wraped it in plastic shopper and then a towel and left it for about an hour. I checked it after an hour and it was yoo hote like fire :p I let it cool down for half an hour but still I have no vodeo on my laptop. What should I do?

    Probably buy a new laptop. :)

  6. 176
    yousaf Says:

    I removed hard drive and battery, turned on my gateway cx210x and wraped it in plastic shopper and then a towel and left it for about an hour. I checked it after an hour and it was yoo hote like fire :p I let it cool down for half an hour but still I have no vodeo on my laptop. What should I do??? :-(

  7. 175
    Dominic Says:

    Thank you SO much!! I didnt even have to let mine run for over 15 minutes when the screen came on.

  8. 174
    adrian Says:

    Worked on my HP Pavilion dv6655ec with Geforce 8400M GS. I removed battery, hard drive, taped all air vents and wrapped the notebook in towel (display was not wrapped). Plugged AC power, turned it on and let it overheat itself. Progressively the fan speed increased and after 45 minutes I started to wonder how long should I let it run. Fortunately few minutes later the notebook shut down itself due to overheat (ambient room temperature was very hot 31C, so it took little bit shorter, than in the blog post). I disconnected AC and let it cool down for 6 hours (still wrapped in towel). Then removed the towel, connected AC and hesitantly turned the notebook on. To my surprise I was greeted with HP logo and no disk found message (as my hard drive was still removed) :-) Thank you.

  9. 173
    cj2600 Says:

    @ Renee,

    I let it run for 10 minutes with towel and bubble wrap off. I then shut it down let it cool for 30 min. I put the hard drive and battery in it, turned it on and it works.

    If you have important data on the hard drive back it up ASAP. The laptop might fail again.

  10. 172
    cj2600 Says:

    FRank,

    Now I have 1/2 a screan. the L/S is all lines. It works perfect with an external monitor.

    Sounds like a problem with the LCD screen.

    Could the repair man messed something up.

    It’s possible but I cannot tell without looking at the laptop.

    What is your HP laptop model? Some HP laptops had known issues with the video card.

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