Flea Power What it is and how to drain it

What is flea power in computers?

Flea power is the residual or static electricity that remains on electrical components  like the motherboard even when you have them switched off. Bad computer capacitors can store static electricity even if its powered off, disconnected from the AC adapter and without a battery.

The retained power also know as electrostatic discharge is a tiny charge which can make your fans spin or computer to run for about 10 seconds. This may cause your computer to fail to turn off as discussed hear with this dell xps 13

Remove Flea power on Dell inspiron laptop.

Dell laptop showing  power button
Dell laptop power button

Earlier we wrote an article on how to fix a Dell laptop which wont turn on . The laptop failed to turn on because of the electrostatic discharge. Flea power can cause your motherboard to short out and cause your computer not to turn on or just show a blank screen. So to clear the flea power on your laptop or desktop computer do the following steps

  1. If its a laptop remove the battery and then disconnect it from the  AC adapter.
  2. Press and hold down the power button for 15 seconds then release it.
  3. Put the battery back and then connect the AC adapter.
  4. Turn on your laptop or the computer.

This is not a dell only problem it affects all other brands be it an HP laptop or a server. Basically if it has failing capacitors it will have such issues. Draining the power is a fix for a number of things, maybe the computer is showing a blank screen, it won’t turn on or its a short circuiting motherboard.

The same applies for desktop computers.

Its not a frequent problem unless your job is servicing servers and troubleshooting hardware problems. So when trouble shooting your computer next time keep in mind draining flea power can be the solution to the problem.

I have used it to “fix” a lot of computers so to say

Computer motherboard showing capacitors

What causes it.

In as much as this will fix your computer if the same issue keeps occurring the issue is hardware related, which means draining flea power will be a temporary fix.

What this means is that if your computer continually keeps retaining that much static charge to cause a malfunction, it can be a case of band grounding , bad capacitors, open circuit etc.

Please don’t hesitate to leave comments and suggestions below.


  1. Thanks for the great info.. I was just wondering what the flea power is and how to fix problem on laptop that won’t boot up.

  2. I have a Dell desktop running Windows 7 and am bedeviled by a flea power problem. Every night I shut down (and turn off the monitors (2)), and 5 mornings out of 7, the power won’t come on. Green light in back (power is being delivered), but pushing the power button… nothing.

    So I go through the same routine: first, disconnect power (takes about 25 seconds for the green light to finally dim out). I wait another 30 seconds, and then I press the power button and hold it for 20 seconds… presumably discharging any remaining static electricity). I then reconnect power, and 1 time out of 10, it will start up.

    On the 9 other times, I have to disconnect everything: monitors, internet, usb connectors (mouse and keyboard) and of course power cord. Press and hold power button for 20 seconds, release, and then reconnect power cord (only). Then, holding my breath, I press the power button. 5 times out of (remaining 9), it will start up. And the other four times it “tries” to start: a little light flashes behind the power button, and nothing. I press again, another tiny flash, and nothing, I press one more time, and 3 out of 4 times, it will “turn over” (like a car with a failing battery…). That one remaining time? I have to disconnect the power cord and again press the power button to release (new) static electricity. (The little flash appears, convincing me that “some” residual power is there in the machine, but somehow not enough.) So far, after the second drain, that last remaining time does start after reconnecting power cord the second time. I then have to reconnect everything.

    It’s getting real tedious, so if anyone has 1) a diagnosis from experience, or 2) a solution other than “buy a new computer”, I would love to hear it.


    1. Rick
      Hardware is the main culprit when it comes to flea power problems. Have you tried running the built in Dell ePSA (Pre-boot System Assesment). If you haven’t, run it and see if any of the hardware gives errors. To run ePSA press the F12 key when computer attempts to boot. It goes through all the various hardware on your computer checking for errors. If you get an error message use the online dell diagnostics to figure out what the error code means.

    2. Hi, i have a dell inspiron and i am suffering from the same problem, it all started when i left my laptop on charge over night and there was some problem with my home’s power source. At first the laptop didn’t start and after some hit and trials it did start without battery. Eventually with my research i am confused between overheating and flea power as the laptop does shuts down abruptly and starts only after draining the flea power. Help ASAP.

      1. Hi Nikesh.
        1. Normally if a PC is wont turn on because of overheating it takes a bit of time to cool down then it will turn on. If that the case you may want check if your cooling system is working are the fans spinning and so on.

        2. What is happening when you put the battery back, does it charge, does it switch off those might be some clues

    3. (granted, this issue was from 3 years ago, so, this reply is for the benefit of others)

      Given your symptoms, I’d say you’re due for a new power supply. Desktops need new power supplies every 5 years or so, depending on usage, of course (n.b., continuous use is better than constantly turning the machine on and off). Power supplies are inexpensive (under $50) and can be installed in-store or by the owner (after unplugging, the hardest part is removing and replacing screws; also, sometimes the power supply can be a really tight fit). Make sure to get the right size power supply; do NOT opt for “more power,” which would mean a larger power supply, and, odds are, no fit!

  3. Hi! I have a Lenova ideapad 110S and I’ve only had it for a few months. Suddely this morning my laptop wont charge. It comes on with the Charger connected but it dosen’t charge at all, so Im basically using it as a desktop. I called the company and got assistance but all they said was to send it in and I really need it for college stuff. I’ve tried almost everything and I was wondering if you could help me. I want to try and remove the flea power but I cant remove the battery. Please help if you can. Thank you x

  4. I didn’t know it was called flea power, but I have used this complete draining technique to sort out many problems with Dell laptops not wanting to boot or throwing up other problems.
    But what to do with an E7270 – where the battery is inside the machine? I can remove it, but it’s quite a hassle (removing the screws and then the battery and its cable – running the risk of damaging something inside the machine each time I do it)…
    What is the protocol for laptops with internal batteries (especially if this is the new trend?)?
    Many thanks!

    1. I have found out on some laptops pressing an holding the power button works even if the battery is is still connected.
      You can attempt to do the same. Press and hold the power button without removing the battery.

  5. Brilliant solution. It fixed my Dell XPS 13 9350 i7!!!
    My laptop was ‘pretending’ to have a LCD failure and wouldn’t not boot (i.e. 2 Orange LED flashes, 7 White LED flashes). I managed to check my LCD by pressing the power button and the ‘D’ key to force the inbuilt screen diagnostic test. I was surprised when the screen came on and displayed the 3 RGB colours in sequence.
    So I tried you FLEA power solution 3 times, but it didn’t work. So being seriously miffed, I didn’t bother to put the battery back in and put my laptop in the draw for 24 hours.
    I then reluctantly phoned Dell to arrange an expensive out-of-warranty repair. As I was boxing up the laptop I decided to give it one last chance. I held the power button for about 1 minute, then put the battery back in, screwed the base back on and pressed the power button.
    It powered up first time as if nothing had happened!! Works perfectly and all diagnostics are fine.

    Unbelievable. I was looking at a £400+ repair job and its now not needed. Can’t thank you enough. Never heard of FLEA power before, but I do now.

    So to anyone in the same situation, leave your laptop for 24hrs with the battery removed. Then follow the instruction in this article. It brought my stone dead very expensive laptop back to life. All Good!

    1. On a laptop such as a Dell XPS, you don’t need to actually remove the battery. Just unplug the connector to the motherboard. I then loosely put the bottom cover back on. Hold the power button for 10 secs, then wait a min. I then plug in the external power, if it’s the Flea problem it should boot right up. I then shut it down, open it back up, plug in the battery, loosely replace that bottom cover again, then see if it will boot on battery. Mine did. I shut it back down, flipped it over and re-screwed on the bottom cover. Done. Works like it’s new.

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