Is it time to give up and get a new laptop?


Feb 25, 2015
Situation: A family member accidentally spilled (a bit of) tea over my laptop without my knowing. (I'd say about half a paper cup's worth). Laptop was not on at the time.
The laptop mentioned is a 3 year old m14 Alienware (2012 Edition)

What happened: I was not aware of the spill until the following day when I attempted to boot up my laptop with the PSU in and saw the water stains on the LCD.

What I did: Immediately shutdown the laptop and unplug PSU. I didn't have the proper tools on me so I went home and took out the battery. I left the laptop with a dehumidifier and let sit for a day in a hot and dry environment. From what I saw inside the laptop, there wasn't that much liquid inside. (There was some liquid on the battery and some on the HDD but it never got past that)

The Next Day: I attempted to boot up the laptop and succeeded, managed to go onto my desktop and even run small everyday programs. There was still water stuck between the LCD screen so I turned it off and kept in a dry area.

Day Afterwards: Attempted to boot up laptop again. ( I wanted to see if it was still ok before removing the LCD screen and wiping the water), Got 7 beeps of doom, which on the Dell site says that there is a CPU problem. After disassembling everything ( man I hate disassembling laptops...) I did not see any fried capacitors nor that hated burnt smell of electronics. I reasoned that the cpu wasn't actually fried, because if it did, it would have happened the first time. I tried to boot. The Seven Deadly Beeps persisted after reassembly.

Things I've attempted: I've tried the method of letting the laptop beep for 15 minutes - no success. I've also cleaned up the mobo with some pure rubbing alcohol.

My question is, is it time to give up and salvage the parts and invest in a new laptop?


Jan 13, 2015
It's probably a good excuse to upgrade, but if you haven't tried it, put the entire thing in a big sack of Rice overnight. Hot and dry isn't enough, you need a hydrophilic surrounding like silica gel (although I doubt you have a silica gel tub, if you do that and it would be better)

Considering it's been more than a few hours, I doubt this will work. Any little water contaminants that can't evaporate (things contained in tea) will be enough to mess up the delicate circuitry. It is likely that turning it on, and having everything move around shifted the water into more locations.
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