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Coffee spill on laptop. How to save hard drive?


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#1
adifrank

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My wife just spilled hot coffee on our Dell Studio 1555 laptop. Within two seconds the screen went black. Immediately after that I disconnected the computer from the electricity and then removed the battery. Now the laptop is open and turned over.

My main concern is the data on the hard drive. Although it majorly sucks - I can live with having to buy a new laptop. But there is some data on the hard drive that is not yet backed up and this I REALLY want to save somehow.

What can I do? I've read several explanations on the web about what to do with a laptop after a spill - but they all seem to refer to a laptop that is still working (because they say to not bother shutting it down). In this case I just want to check the laptop's hard drive and make sure it's okay as soon as possible.

I'd be really happy if someone could help me out with suggestions - how to tackle this. Thanks!
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#2
rshaffer61

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Your best bet is to purchase a external hard drive enclosure for your laptop hard drive. Make sure it is the correct interface IDE or SATA for your hard drive with USB connections.
Then using a different system attach it to USB port where you can then backup the data on it.
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#3
adifrank

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thanks rshaffer61.
some people at work have told me that if i leave the laptop turned over to dry for 2 or 3 days that there's a possibility i could switch it on and find that all is okay. i'm far from being an expert on these things... so i don't know.
some i'm faced with a dilemma of:
1. waiting 3 days and hoping for the best
2. not waiting and go ahead with your suggestion (remove hard drive and place in external enclosure)

i guess my main concern about option 1 is whether or not this could be dangerous for my hard drive, assuming that it is still okay currently. what i mean is - say the hard drive is fine but some electronics in the computer have been damaged... or maybe there's some liquid in there that still didn't dry out - could switching on the laptop to see if it still works somehow harm the hard drive?

thanks!
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#4
rshaffer61

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Probably not dangerous but there is a possibility if the system is not completely dry that it could short out.
I personally would suggest going with my options as that way you can make sure the drive itself is dry and if so be able to access your data to back it up.
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#5
adifrank

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ok. i'll do that. thanks!
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#6
rshaffer61

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Please update me on how everything works out for you. We like to know good or bad. If there are any other questions please ask as I will continue to monitor this topic for you. :thumbsup:
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#7
123Runner

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I would go with what Rshaffer61 recommends. Then after you get the data you could always put the drive back in and see what happens.

Purchasing a new laptop will get you (of course) a new hard drive so if the other one does fail you still have the data (hopefully).
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#8
adifrank

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will do.
i'll try to do this over the weekend and let you know how things turned out.
thanks!
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#9
rshaffer61

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Are you still having problems with your issue?
It has been 17 days since your last response and I was wondering if the issue has been resolved?
If so can you explain how it was resolved so others may be able to fix it if they have the same issue.
If not please let us know and we can continue with helping you to resolve the issue.
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#10
adifrank

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Hi. Sorry for not reporting back. I actually have good news. Here's a short rundown of how things went:
1. I left the laptop turned over to dry with battery out.
2. Removed hard drive
3. Purchased external enclosure for hard drive
4. Hard drive was ok! backed up data
5. A few days ago I inserted the hard drive back into the computer, inserted battery and hit the power button. It turned on and up came the windows XP logo!

So it seems all is okay after all. I was sure the computer was dead. At the time of the spill the computer went dead and made a weird sound. I haven't tried any diagnostics yet, but it seems to be fine after all.

Thanks for the help!!!
You can mark this issue as resolved.
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#11
rshaffer61

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Congratulations adifrank. :rockon: for a successful resolution for your issue.

I'm glad we could help and please let us know how everything works out for you.
If there is anything else we can do to help please feel free to ask. I appreciate that you allowed us to assist you with your issue and for your patience.
Thank you for choosing GeeksToGo for help. :thumbsup: :ph34r:
This issue now appears to be resolved.


If other members are reading this and have a similar problem please begin a New Topic and someone will assist you as soon as possible
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