Toshiba Satellite A60 and A65 problems

posted in: Toshiba Problems | 432

Let’s talk about problems typical for Toshiba Satellite A60 and A65 notebooks. Do you own one of these laptops? Is it working fine for you?
Here are some typical issues I’ve notices with this model.

1. First of all – overheating
Does your laptop shuts down without any reason when you ran CPU intensive programs? If yes, then most likely it happens because the laptop overheats. It happens because overtime the heatsink gets clogged with dust. A layer of dust collects between the cooling fan and the heat sink (dashed line on the picture) and heat produces by the processor gets trapped inside the laptop. As a result of that, the processor overheats and the laptop shuts down.
Clogged fan

There are two different way to clean the heat sink and fan in these models:
- Buy a can of compressed air or find an air compressor and blow off the heat sink through the air intakes on the bottom of the laptop.
- Remove the keyboard and you’ll get an access to the cooling fan. Blow off dust from the fan and the heat sink.
In some cases the laptop overheats because of defective cooling fan. The fan should start working as soon as you power up the laptop. If the fan will not star, most likely it’s bad and must be replaced. You can find a new heat sink cooling fan for Satellite A60 and A65 notebooks by the following part number: V000042110.

2. Defective onboard memory

Here’s another common problem – bad onboard memory. This memory is integrated into the motherboard and if it goes bad you’ll have to replace the entire motherboard.
If your laptop starts with some weird characters or lines of dots on the screen, most likely you have a faulty onboard memory. If you test the laptop with an external monitor, you’ll see the same defective video on the external monitor too. You can test the onboard memory with Memtest86+ utility. Remove any external RAM modules and run the memory test. If the onboard memory fails, you’ll have to replace the motherboard.
The integrated memory module is located close by the memory extension slot, under the foil.
Bad onboard memory

UPDATE: If you have bad memory, you should read this comment.

3. Last but not least – power jack issue.

With Satellite A60 and A65 notebooks this problem is not as common as with Satellite M30X, M35X, A70 and A75, but it’s still a problem. Overtime, the power jack might get loose and the positive pin stops making a good contact with the motherboard anymore. As a result, the laptop switches to the battery power even though the power adapter is still plugged in. Usually you can temporally fix the problem by adjusting the power adapter plug on the back of the laptop, but after some time the problem reappears.
In this case you’ll have to disassemble the laptop, remove the motherboard and resolder the power jack.
Loose power jack

Do you experience the same problems or you have another issue with your Satellite A60 or A65 notebook? Please share your experience.

Instructions for replacing laptop power jack yourself


432 Responses

  1. cj2600

    Sean,
    I work mostly with Toshiba, IBM and business line HP laptops, but not with Sony computers. I guess you are asking about your laptop because the hard drive is buried inside the computer and you cannot easily access it from the bottom? Sorry man, I cannot help you with detailed instructions.
    In general you’ll have to do the following steps:
    1. Remove all devices from the bottom and remove all screws.
    2. Remove the keyboard
    3. Remove all screws located under the keyboard and disconnect all cables
    4. Split the laptop case

  2. Sean

    When you get a moment, I need to know how to get into a Sony VAIO SZ330P/B to replace a hard drive. Thanks in advance.

  3. cj2600

    I did the esc button option on boot up and prioritized the CD ROM to run first before the Hard drive and the recovery DVD worked.

    Also you can press F12 as soon as Toshiba logo appears and select the CD-Rom from the boot menu, or just place the disc inside the drive, reboot the laptop and press “C” key – it will force booting from the CD-Rom.

  4. System works great now, like it did a couple of years ago! Thanks for all of your help!

    I did the esc button option on boot up and prioritized the CD ROM to run first before the Hard drive and the recovery DVD worked. I thought it might be a useful tip for those who get into a pickle like I did. Take care,

    Jeff

  5. Hi again and thank you for your help. I tried the last known good configuration option but the screen goes black right after I chose it.

    If I insert the recovery DVD I can hear it spin for a minute but the screen just stays black. I can see that the backlight is on though and tried to increase the brightness but no luck. I’ll try the drive fitness diagnostic.

    Thanks for your help. Now that the system is not overheating I’d liek to try and save the rest of it! Take care.

  6. cj2600

    Jeff,

    Now when I boot up I only see the Windows XP start up screen for a few seconds and the screen goes black! I tried the safe modes but the screen goes black right after I choose any mode on the advanced screen.

    Did you try Last Known Good Configuration?

    The recovery disc won’t work either.

    What do you mean by that? If you cannot boot from the recovery DVD or the recovery process will not run?
    Just in case run a diagnostic test on the hard drive. You can use Hitachi’s drive fitness test (link in Resources on the right side) to test your HDD.

  7. Your Overheating solutions worked! After taking the keyboard off and cleaning out the dust the fan doesn’t run at high speed all the time.

    Since your solution worked so well I tried to slavage the system by getting rid of my ATI programs which were causing blue screens. I removed all ATI programs and then disabled the graphics adapter.

    Now when I boot up I only see the Windows XP start up screen for a few seconds and the screen goes black! I tried the safe modes but the screen goes black right after I choose any mode on the advanced screen. The recovery disc won’t work either.

    Please let me know if there is any thing that I can do to save the system.

    Thanks and you have a great site here.

  8. cj2600

    Steve, Cheryl,

    I can’t tell if these leads were soldered down or if they were just physically pressed together to make contact.

    I think they were soldered.
    Here’s a picture of the cooling fan connector on the motherboard.
    I don’t fix laptops on component level but here’s my guess.
    I think soldering the cooling fan wires directly to the leads on the motherboard is the best option you have, unless you can find and replace the whole connector. This is just a guess.

  9. Cheryl

    Steve,
    I have run into the same problem on a Toshiba A65-1062 that I am trying to replace the CPU fan on. It appears the previous owner mut have broken the connector from the motherboard and tried to solder the leads directly onto the board. Is there a better way of doing this? I’m stuck until I can find a better way!
    Thanks,
    Cheryl

  10. Steve Faiwiszewski

    So I was following the disassembly instructions on irisvista.com for my A65, but ran into a major oops when it came to disconnecting the fan power plug from the motherboard; the whole connector broke off the motherboard.
    So, how do I get it back onto the motherboard? Glue, or solder it? The connector apparently was physically mounted on both sides by these 2 tiny “feet”. I can’t tell if they were glued down or soldered. The connector has 3 electrical leads which make contact on the MB with 3 leads. Again, I can’t tell if these leads were soldered down or if they were just physically pressed together to make contact.
    Help!!

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