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Polar bear on ice flow Tips

Tips!

Why won't my computer turn on?
Why won't my mouse work?

Why won't my computer turn on? Believe it or not, we get this question a LOT! There are a number of reasons why a computer
fails to switch on and most of them are relatively simple to fix.

  1. Be sure there is power coming to the jack that you are using for your computer and peripherals.
    If you have voltmeter handy and fell confident to use it, be sure there is sufficient voltage and
    amperage out of the jack. In the U.S., it should register around 120 VAC and at least 15 A.
    Call a certified electrician or your local power company if needed.
  2. Be sure the power cable is tight against the wall and that the cable is not frayed or damaged.
    If not, call a certified electrician to change the jack and/or replace the cable with a similar
    UL rated one ASAP.
  3. If you are using a multiple outlet device, be sure it is turned on and that the circuit breaker is engaged.
    Some older units may have a replaceable fuse that needs to be swapped out if broken. Also,
    extension cords are frowned upon for computers and peripherals.
  4. Some computers are also fused, be sure these are in good working order.
    If you can't tell by visual inspection, a good continuity meter is is helpful.
  5. If you have recently installed a board or device inside your computer, be sure the device is firmly seated
    and attached to power inside the casing. Be sure the cover is replaced properly as there is sometimes
    a safety switch that cuts power to the unit if the cover is removed. Be sure the internal switch makes
    contact with the power button on the case. Be sure your hard drive and memory are fully seated
    in their respective slots as well. Be careful and use a shock-proof strap for this kind of maintenance.
  6. If all the above fails, you might just have a bad transformer (power supply). This happens more
    often than you imagine! Replace one with a factory part or a factory compatible part. It's not hard,
    but does require a screwdriver/nutdriver and nimble fingers.

Why won't my mouse work?

These issues are fairly simple to resolve.

  1. If it is a wired mouse, be sure it is plugged into the computer. It can easily get dislodged, especially
    after moving computer parts, desks, or if you have animals around.
  2. If it is a mechanical mouse (one that has a rubber ball in the bottom), be sure the ball is still there,
    they sometimes fall out of older mice. Also, be sure the ball is clean and the sensors are clean.
    There's a washer that will slightly unscrew on the underneath. Remove this and take out the ball.
    You will notice two rollers perpendicular to each other in the recess. Be sure there is no accumulated
    dirt on them. You can use your fingernail to gently remove the debris. DO NOT use liquids!

    Replace the ball and washer and see if that helps.
  3. Check the cable attached to the mouse. If it seems frayed or loose where it is attached to the mouse,
    you will probably have to replace it.
  4. If it is an optical mouse (one that has a small light on the bottom), be sure the lens covering the light
    is in place and not scratched. As with the mechanical mouse, also check the cable to see if it is frayed
    or has too much play where it attaches to the mouse itself.
  5. If it is a wireless mouse, which are generally optical, be sure there is a fresh battery inside the body of the mouse.
    Be sure the USB adapter, if you need one, is still firmly attached /inserted into the computer itself. Also, some
    older mice require you to "sync up" to the computer/adapter. Each part of the pair of mouse/adapter will have
    a tiny button on them to help with this issue. Each brand of mouse is different, so refer to your manual for the
    correct method to establish a connection.
  6. If all fails, it's possible the mouse has just lived its natural life and should be disposed of properly.
    Don't feed to the local cats. Find a reliable mouse at your local computer supplier and replace it ASAP.