Dell Precision wont turn on – (Solved)

The Dell Precision mobile workstations are powerful coupled with being light weight there are a must have if you need your computer to do some heavy lifting.

Since you are here, I assume you own one and your Dell precision wont turn on.

No need to worry, before you spend money on tech support here is a list of thing to do to fix your notebook that wont turn.

How to fix Dell Precision that wont turn on.

Clear Flea power

This is the easiest to do and usually solves most of the glitches causing the laptop not to turn on.

Flea power is the residual electricity that remains on the motherboard when you laptop is not connected to a power supply. The residual current can cause your laptop not to boot or power on normally.

To clear flea power:

  1. Disconnect the laptop from power supply.
  2. Remove the battery.
  3. Now press and hold the power button for about 20 seconds.
  4. Connect the laptop back to the power supply.
  5. Press the power button to turn it on.

If the laptop has lights on and the fan is blowing clearing flea power will fix it and your laptop should boot properly.

NB: Most battery are easily removable but if yours seems hard you can try the same process with the battery still in there.

Also consult the specific dell precision manual on how to remove the battery if you cant figure it out.

Check power supply and source

Does the workstation have power. I know its an obvious thing, but sometimes we miss the obvious in our frustration. Check to see if the laptop is receiving power.

For example on the Dell Precision 5540 Mobile workstation, there are lights on the edge near the touch pad which turn on when you connect the charger or when you turn it on.

Hence there should be a light that turns white when you connect the charger to the laptop and it has power.

Wall socket

If no lights appear on the laptop when plugged. Test the power outlet where you connected to see if there is power coming from it.

Alternatively plug a different gadget to see if it charges. If it doesn’t then you will need a live power source.

Laptop Charger

Another thing to check is the laptop charger. If the battery is flat and the laptop is not charging then definitely it wont turn on.

Most dell laptop charges, have either a green or blue light which shows if the charger is receiving power.

Don’t use charger with bent or frayed cables as a simple short circuit might cause you more problems than buying a new charger which you can get for cheap here.

Alienware charger sticker
Dell laptop charger


A dead battery will also cause your laptop to fail to boot.

If its just a dead battery then its easier to diagnose.

Just remove the battery connect the laptop to the charger and turn on the workstation. If it turns on fine without any issues then you know the problem is the battery.

Check the battery for swelling, as has been reported on a bunch of Precision 5510. A swollen battery is a recipe for disaster. If you have a swollen battery get it replaced and get a proper dell battery here .

While you there check and see if the terminals where the battery gets connected are clean and there are no bent pins.

Swollen battery can cause issues with computer turning on

Connected accessories causing laptop to not turn on

Are there any flash drives connected to the computer. I once put a flash drive with an operating system on my Dell precision 7730 and it took me a while to figure out why it was giving me the error no boot device found .

Disconnect any connected peripherals.

Some users also mentioned disconnecting their Logitech mice solved the problem. So just disconnect everything if its still not turning on.

Display / External Monitor

Precision laptops use powerful graphic cards, but these can also have issues, hence interfering with display resulting in computer showing a black screen.

An alternative would be to connect an external monitor using HDMI cables and see if the laptop will display on the secondary monitor.

Also note you may need to switch the screen from the primary to secondary after connecting the second monitor. In windows you use a combination of keys for example on my laptop right now you will need to press Fn + F8 keys simultaneously.

With the exception of where Function (Fn) are reversed as in the article on inverted / reversed function key

HDMI Cable to connect to external monitor
HDMI Cable for connecting laptop to external monitor

Overheating causing immediate shutdown

If your Dell Precision is overheating it will immediately shutdown to prevent other components from get friend. Its protective mechanism to give you time to figure out what the problem.

The first thing to check would be the fan.

Is the fan spinning? Whenever you press the power button, the computer initiates the pre-boot self test which includes spinning the fans. So if you don’t here the fans spinning then that might be the issue causing overheating.

Another issue is dust accumulation on the computer interrupting the cooling system hence leading to overheating normal its nothing that a can of compressed can cant fix.

Dell Diagnostics

If you are able to get into the BIOS you can run Dell Diagnostics as explained here.

To run Dell Diagnostic

  1. Press the power button.
  2. Immediately press F12.
  3. Then select Dell Diagnostics.

Diagnostics should automatically start running. If there is an issue you will get an error code which you can look up as described in the article I linked above.


You have tried everything above and still your Dell Precision wont turn on, check out this general extensive general guide on how to fix a computer that wont turn on.

If your laptop is still under warranty you can call up Dell tech support and see if they can help.

Had a different solution share in the comments section below how you were able to make you Precision boot

One comment

  1. Thank you.. keeping the power button pressed for 20 seconds without removing the battery did not boot but a subsequent power button press did make the laptop come up. Seems like there was BIOS update needed.

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