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Old 03-23-2008, 07:32 AM   #1
tvdw
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A laptop with a keyboard, got water in it, now I have a problem


Hi all,

About a month ago my laptop was standing outside and it began to rain, I got it inside, but the keyboard was malfunctioning.

I simple connected a USB keyboard and the problem was fixed, but I don't really like the solution.

When I try to use the normal keyboard, the keyboard gives a wrong output. For example, with the "a", it gives "qa", and with the "s", it gives "w2s"

I wonder if this could be software-mapped.. So I can use my normal keyboard again.

I'm using Fedora 8

Tom
 
Old 03-23-2008, 09:34 AM   #2
lakris
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Hi,
it *is* possible that no harm has come to the electronics with short circuits, oxidation etc. A short circuit could cause any amount of problems and very hard to trace down. There is a film to protect bare metal and the keyboard doesn't actually work by connecting metal parts, only registering high or low resistance between films/layers (Sorry but my english doesn't allow me to explain it any clearer!). If You are lucky it is only a mechanical problem. Maybe some goo, dust, cigarette ashes, hair and other stuff has been shifted around and causing keys to register double or triple. I would suggest using it a lot, thereby once again moving around any particles. Maybe even clean it out with a vacuum cleaner (carefully), and then open up the keyboard and use tops, liqour, try all "dry" methods first.

I have myself on occation had cups of coffe and beer washed over a laptop and they all survived it. I had to quickly remove power source and the battery, turn them upside down, dry wipe off as much as possible and place them relatively close to a moderate heat source. On the other hand, I haven't had the same luck with cell phones...

/Lakris
 
Old 03-23-2008, 10:24 AM   #3
tvdw
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well, I have already tried those things, but they don't work.. That's why I'm wondering whether there's an other solution..
 
Old 03-23-2008, 10:24 AM   #4
Reefcrazed
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Yeah the best thing is to instantly remove power, turn the device upside-down and shake it to remove excess water. Do not apply power for a few days, including batteries and let the device dry out. Why not replace the keyboard ? Laptop keyboards are normally super easy to swap out !!

I agree with the poster above me, newer cell phones are super sensitive to water. The older ones were way more forgiving, I dropped an old Nokia in a parking lot, it literally sat in a puddle of water for an hour in the rain and I could see it was still on. That cell phone worked till I retired it. The newer one died while sitting in the yard and caught a little bit of morning dew and never came back on.
 
Old 03-23-2008, 12:46 PM   #5
michaelk
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Might try contact cleaner or 100% alcohol (not the drug store stuff) to attempt to remove any stuff in the keyboard. No magic software will fix your keyboard.
 
Old 03-24-2008, 02:41 AM   #6
tvdw
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What I meant is that I've already tried all of those. The only way to fix this problem probably is to manipulate the keyboard driver to handle these new keycodes. Isn't there a way to do this?

Tom
 
Old 03-24-2008, 12:32 PM   #7
michaelk
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8042.c would be the place to start. This is where the system decodes the keyboard scan codes.
 
Old 03-24-2008, 02:08 PM   #8
pixellany
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Instinctively, trying to change the coding sounds like the worst way to go. As soon as you change it, one of the keys will recover--or another one will change.

If you can't recover with some combo of alcohol rinse, compressed air, and perhaps the gentle application of hot air from a hair dryer, then just replace it. Also, I would remove the keyboard to clean it---no reason to expose the rest of the HW to these measures.
 
Old 03-24-2008, 02:47 PM   #9
michaelk
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Yes, I agree that trying to kludge software to overcome a hardware problem in this case is not the best solution.
 
Old 03-26-2008, 04:45 AM   #10
Lonewolf Yorks
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I don't know about laptop keyboards, but when I spilled a full glass of red wine into a desktop keyboard, I dismantled it totally and washed it in warm soapy water letting it dry fully before rebuilding.

Shame I had to do it again for the same reason not too long after

Still works OK though!

Wolfie.
 
  


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