I have been dealing with the faulty soldering in this unit for over 9 months. Tried the quick fix of punching a hole in the unit over where the soldering is deafective. The Pc worked find for about 7 hours, but now there's no AC power to it.
I finally had enough and got on a live chat with an HP tech. The usual BS. Send us $298.00and we'll fix it. I persisted and told her that this is a KNOWN PROBLEM and that these units left the factory defective (cheap cold soldering). She stated that she "is aware of the defect" but kept insisting that because the unit is out of warranty, they would have to charge for the repair. I continued to insist that the warranty is not even an issue, as these units were defective from day one and are failing all over the country. I referred her to this blog, but she seemed to know about the issue already. She then wanted me to give her all of my contact info so she could have a Case Manager call me. I kept refusing and told her that I am writing to the State Attorney General's office (they monitor the business dealings of any company doing business in their states) and that I am attaching all of the complaints regarding this issue from this blog. I also told her that I am going to write to my local newspaper, as HP has a large facility in my city. She asked me to please not do this! They know the power that the Attorneys General of each state have.
At any rate she put her supervisor on and I got the same crap from him. I kept threatening them with bad publicity and thousands of letters from all of us to our State Attorney Generals. I got nowhere, except that this supervisor finally said that he didn't have the authority to authorize a no-charge repair, but if the case manager understood all of my issues, he could authorize it. I finally (after an hour and a half) agreed. But I told them that I was typing my letter of complaint to the Colorado State Attorney General's office today and composing my letter to the newspaper as well, and if this guy starts talking warranty or any other crap, I was going to hang up and start blasting the letters.
I would strongly advise anyone who is currently struggling with this issue or has resolved it at their own time and expense to write to your State Attorney General's office. I used to deal with them when I was working in Sales Promotion and we had to register Sweepstakes with them. They take their jobs seriously and will force businesses to deal fairly with customers and fine them if they don't. Most companies live in fear of being reported to the state AG's. So, I'm firing off an Email today, and if the rest of you do the same, and copy HP, maybe we'll get something other than the run around. I've spent over $500. to fix this disaster. Had I known from the start that this was a manufacturing defect, I would have done this sooner. I'm not spending another cent, but I intend to make HP's life miserable. The more letters that get sent and copied to HP, the more clout we'll have.
You can Google a search for your State Attorney General - just type in your state and Attorney General and you should pull up contact information.
The "case manager" is supposed to call me tomorrow. I'll post what happens then.
I too need info on this. for about 6 months I was under misinturpretation of now finding he droped his pc causing this kind of issue. His pc's out of warrentee as well and I's simply love to get the motherboard/ parts and replace the problem. If any furture details or motherboard picts please pass them on.
So... a follow-up post in case anyone is still using their old Compaq R3000 like me (I have had it over 5 years), hey it still works, except for the power problem, which I have fixed. In case you are having one of the following problems and are curious what it might take to fix, I will run through what happened with me. Since it is now Aug 2009 I may be the only one keeping one alive, but hey, since I found out so much, I thought I would share in case someone can give theirs new life.
My problems: flickering screen that needed to warm up and be twisted to stay on steady, intermittent power issues, plugging and unplugging to get the charge to work, power-down in the middle of using the laptop, and the sound buttons on the side didn't work. Doesn't speak to great workmanship, but I think most of you know that or you wouldn't be here.
Just a note, I have better soldering capabilities at work than probably 95% of others, an instant heat iron, a lab microscope, a heat gun at the station, and heat-shrink tubing, and 25+ years of experience, but you may be able do most of this with a 'Radio Shack' soldering iron and some patience. However, it isn't for the novice and you need to keep track of the screws and where they go.
Anyway, here is what was wrong with mine in case anyone has any of these problems:
1) I spent 3-4 hours taking it apart (I have done this two times and was faster and more organized the second time - only about an hour). There are other guides on how to do this which you can find in related discussions and even at the HP website (as of Aug 09).
2) POWER-JACK: I first thought mine was cold-soldered like many others. It wasn't, I took apart my R3000 down to the motherboard and re-soldered the power jack. After the tedious process of putting it back together again and being hopeful, I found that it still had bad behavior and wasn't fixed. So... I ordered a powerjack on Ebay, ~$5 shipped. When it came I fit it on the end of the power charger cord before soldering it and it was MUCH tighter. That was the problem, after many years of use, the power jack was way too loose. Took the unit apart again and soldered in the new jack. WARNING: my unit had yellow goop on the top around the power-jack that had to be cut away. Also, it isn't easy to get the old jack out, it takes a lot of heat on the terminals and I had to use a pair of pliers,
so be careful that you don't break the board or other parts if you try this.
3) POWER CORD: Yes, the end of the charger that plugs into the laptop had worn out and the ground was loose and causing intermittent charging problems. This repair involved clippping the cord, a lot of cutting with an exacto knife and rebuilding the end and using heat-shrink tubing to secure it again. To test your charger you need to put a probe inside and one outside and check the voltage. You should have ~18.5V when the charger is plugged into the wall. If you wiggle the cord and the connection is intermittent, you may have to fix this.
4) SOUND BOARD: I called HP support (twice) to find out if there was any way to test the sound control buttons on the side of the laptop before I took it apart so I could see if it was a hardware problem. After 1 hour of telling me to install new drivers and other such stuff I gave up. There is no keyboard test that tests those keys. I figured I must have bad solder on the button contacts as some others have, but that isn't what it turned out to be. NOTE: The mute light on my laptop also didn't work, which is a clue that it wasn't a button soldering problem. The sound buttons are on a separate little board that screws into and plugs into the motherboard through a white ~0.3" by 0.7" 2 piece connector. I found when probing with a meter that the buttons worked fine and I traced the problem to the pins on the motherboard piece of the connector that were cold-soldered and loose on one side of it. I re-soldered them (this was the 2nd time the laptop was apart) and when I was done it worked again! The buttons had died over a long period of time and had been dead for at least a year, probably 2, so it was great to have them back.
5) BLINKING SCREEN: When I took the laptop apart the 1st time I took the whole screen apart. I am not positive what was actually wrong, but all signs point to the cable being loose in the flat panel connector on the back of the screen. I don't know how this could have been anything I did, I think it just wasn't inserted correctly when manufactured. Another possibility is where the screen cable comes into the laptop under the left hinge. It turns a corner there and the hinge could have been pinching it. However, being able to twist the screen to help the problem seems to indicate that it was the connector on the back of the display. Since I have put it together again the blinking screen problem has disappeared.
Again, your problems may be different, if you have any of these, you may want to venture inside and try to fix it yourself instead of paying $200-$300 to get it fixed. Also, one of the steps in taking the laptop apart is removing the processor; make sure you use new thermal paste and clean off the old before putting it back together. You wouldn't want to kill such a great product ?!?! (Yes, I’m kidding!)
Good Luck and here's hoping it will last until I want to get rid of it.
One other note, I had spent around $80 for a new battery a couple of years ago, which may also be part of your problem if it loses charge.
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