Having problems with your Gateway 450SX4 Notebook ?

Gateway 450sx4 has very dim lcd, almost invisible. otherwise it (the computer) is ok


Answers :

Hello and thank you for using Fixya's services.

I have a couple of questions and some troubleshooting tips for you:

Questions: Is the splash screen coming on at all? Any picture or text right when you boot up? What Windows are you running (Windows XP or Vista)? Are there any lights on when you boot up or beeps? If so how many beeps do you hear?

First troubleshooting: If it boots up and is at least showing the splash screen (Gateway splash screen or text) then it would be that the operating system is corrupt. This can be caused by several things included viruses, power surges or hardware failure.

The solution for this would be to take the hard drive out and slave it to another working desktop computer to retrieve your data. The attach the hard drive back on and reformat it (I can add specifics to doing this once I know the operating system).

Second troubleshooting: If you hear the operating system chime but do not see a picture and all the lights are on, then this would indicate that the back light on the screen is out. You can test this simply by hooking the laptop up to a monitor and see if you get a picture. If the computer screen shows on the monitor, then your back-light is out. If it doesn't show up then your video graphics card is out.

If the back light is out, it is easier to order a new screen (new or used) from eBay and just switch out (simple process and you can find a replacement for under 50 dollars on eBay). If it is the video graphics card, then you can also purchase one from eBay and switch out (a little tougher because you have to take the top of the laptop off). You can get assistance with this from the manufacturers website and pull specs for free.

Third troubleshooting: If you do not hear any beeps and the above solutions did not work. Then your motherboard has failed. This can be caused by surges or dust. You can purchase a replacement from eBay for a fraction of the cost and replace (this is tough and I am not sure if they have specs for this). You can do it yourself, just be sure and put everything back together as it was.

Fourth troubleshooting: To test the battery, take the battery out of the laptop and turn on with just the adaptor. If it boots, then the battery will need to be replaced. There is no way of testing the power adaptor but 85% of the time, this is the problem. Even if lights come on, the adaptor sometimes gets so overheated that it silently goes out but gives just enough power to make the lights come on. The power adaptor can be found on eBay for under 20 dollars and is cheap enough to replace (first) to make sure that is not the problem. The battery can also be found on eBay for under 60 dollars.

Please let me know if you have any questions and I will be glad to assist.
I had the same problem and it was the screen inverter
\015\012GATEWAY 400 450 & SOLO 9550 INVERTER BRD \015\0123RUA2IV0003 on ebay $9.99 and it took about 1/2 hour to replace. It seems these go out fairly often and I replace the one on my Compaq laptop as well. If you can see the screen very slightly in a dark room it is probably the inver which is easy to get at and cheap as well
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