How to Repair: The AC power adapter type cannot be determined

The battery pack is an integral part of your laptop computer. The battery makes your notebook computer portable and has a lot of freedom of movement. However, an AC adapter is needed to charge the laptop.

For Dell users, there is a problem when charging a laptop as you may encounter an error message that the power adapter type cannot be determined. If you encounter this error, you can ignore it and press F1 to continue booting your computer.

But ignoring this error is not the final solution. So how do you fix the error that says that the power and type of the power supply cannot be determined?

What is the cause of the “Power supply type cannot be determined” message?

As the error message implies, it means that your computer cannot detect the connected charger. The power connector consists of 3 pins, 2 of which are power and ground, and the third is a signal line for identifying the power supply as a compatible device (Dell).

If the laptop does not receive the signal, the power supply cannot charge the battery, but it can power the laptop. This protects the battery from high currents if the charger power is higher than the manufacturer’s specification. If you ignore this message, system performance will decrease and you will notice that your CPU clock speed has halved.

This problem may be caused by using the wrong charger. It could also be due to an interrupted data link to identify the charger; it could be due to a problem in the charger (cable, plug, or center pin) or in the laptop (power input jack or motherboard). A new adapter is a good idea; replacing the battery is not. This error has nothing to do with the battery. You will get the same error message if you plug in the adapter without the battery.

How to eliminate the “Cannot detect power adapter type” error message?

Disable power failure warnings

  1. Restart your computer and enter BIOS by pressing DEL or F2, depending on your computer model.
  2. In the BIOS, go to the Advanced tab and disable the Adapter Warnings option. This option may also be present on another tab.
  3. Save your changes and exit. Reboot your computer and the warning will disappear.

If you can reboot the computer normally, but the warning continues to appear, you can permanently disable the warnings by changing your BIOS settings. Every laptop has a setting that determines whether or not the power down warnings will appear.

Turn off your computer

  1. Unplug the charger, turn off your laptop, and remove the battery.
  2. Press and hold the power switch for at least 30 seconds.
  3. Replace the battery, plug in the charger, and reboot.
  4. Check if this solved the problem.

Buy a new power supply/charger

If during troubleshooting you find that your charger doesn’t work on a similar computer or that a similar charger works on your PC, it’s time to replace the power adapter. If you’re sure your charger has been working for a long time, the problem could be anywhere.

It could be loose soldering in the charger, a broken contact, blown capacitors, a faulty connection, etc. If you think you can repair the charger (by replacing cables, capacitors, soldering), try it. In most cases, the charger cannot be salvaged and you will have to buy a new one.

Note the power rating (e.g. 65W, 90W, 130W, etc.) of your regular charger, the voltage (12V, 19V), and the charging current (1A, 2A, 4A). Make sure that these numbers match your new charger, otherwise you will get the same error.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Unplug the AC adapter from the power outlet.
  2. Unplug the AC adapter from the computer.
  3. Check the power adapter and cables (including the power cord) for signs of physical damage or overheating.
  4. Check the adapter for bent, broken, or damaged pins on the plug or connector.

After entering the BIOS settings, go to the Advanced tab and select the Adapter Warnings option. Press Enter to change the value and select "Disabled" from the list.

Hold the plug of the power adapter where it connects to the laptop and slowly move it up and down and side to side to see if the laptop recognizes that the power adapter is plugged in.

In the Control Panel, Power Options, check the status of the power circuits. In the Control Panel, Power Options, check the status of the power meter.

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