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T520 Power Button partially malfunctioning

T400/T410/T420 and T500/T510/T520 Series
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hoax32
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T520 Power Button partially malfunctioning

#1 Post by hoax32 » Sun Aug 15, 2021 7:27 am

Hey guys,

I have an issue with a T520 of mine which has me puzzled.
It is a very early T520 which sat stored locked away for almost a decade and is in perfect condition.
For whatever reason the power button does not properly function on this machine and a keyboard replacement did not help to remedy this problem:

The power button turns on the machine but does not function once the machine is actually on.
You can not use it to shut down (confirmed that the function is assigned to it - problem exists in Windows 7 and Windows 10) and the hard shut off function by holding it down for 5-10 seconds does not work either. It is as if the machine does not register the power button input once it is on.
The only function of the power button that appears to be functioning is its ability to power on the machine if it is actually powered off - it will not awake the machine if in sleep mode - only if completely shut down.

I already updated the BIOS and embedded controller to the latest version with no remedy in the problem.
Any suggestions? I am puzzled.
IBM ThinkPad X22
-----------------------------------

CPU: Intel Pentium III-M Tualatin @1.13GHz
GPU: ATI Mobility Radeon 8MB DDR [OC'ed] CORE: @213MHz - MEM: @200MHz
RAM: 640MB 133MHz SD RAM 3-3-3-6
HDD: 30GB ATA 5400RPM 8MB Cache
OS: XP SP3

atagunov
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Re: T520 Power Button partially malfunctioning

#2 Post by atagunov » Sun Aug 15, 2021 5:58 pm

Hi, you could try and see how the power button on the docking station functions - if you happen to have access to a suitable docking station (and these are pretty chip and quite useful for running x20 and x30 machines).
X220, 2 *T520

hoax32
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Location: Lewisville, TX

Re: T520 Power Button partially malfunctioning

#3 Post by hoax32 » Mon Aug 16, 2021 4:50 pm

Thanks for the response - unfortunately I do not have a dock.
IBM ThinkPad X22
-----------------------------------

CPU: Intel Pentium III-M Tualatin @1.13GHz
GPU: ATI Mobility Radeon 8MB DDR [OC'ed] CORE: @213MHz - MEM: @200MHz
RAM: 640MB 133MHz SD RAM 3-3-3-6
HDD: 30GB ATA 5400RPM 8MB Cache
OS: XP SP3

mikemex
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Re: T520 Power Button partially malfunctioning

#4 Post by mikemex » Mon Aug 16, 2021 9:15 pm

Replace the CMOS battery.
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T420s: 2640m | 16GB | 128GB PM831 | HD+ 4200M | FP | BT
W530: 2740qm | 24GB | 1TB SU800 | FHD K1000M | FP | BT
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RealBlackStuff
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Re: T520 Power Button partially malfunctioning

#5 Post by RealBlackStuff » Tue Aug 17, 2021 12:18 am

After 10 years of non-use the cup under the power button might have become brittle.
Find any old keyboard from the same manufacturer and replace that cup.
AFAIK any cup from under any letter- or number-key will do.
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hoax32
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Posts: 280
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 10:34 pm
Location: Lewisville, TX

Re: T520 Power Button partially malfunctioning

#6 Post by hoax32 » Thu Aug 19, 2021 7:11 pm

Unfortunately I already tested a spare keyboard with the same results.
IBM ThinkPad X22
-----------------------------------

CPU: Intel Pentium III-M Tualatin @1.13GHz
GPU: ATI Mobility Radeon 8MB DDR [OC'ed] CORE: @213MHz - MEM: @200MHz
RAM: 640MB 133MHz SD RAM 3-3-3-6
HDD: 30GB ATA 5400RPM 8MB Cache
OS: XP SP3

kfzhu1229
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Location: Toronto, Canada

Re: T520 Power Button partially malfunctioning

#7 Post by kfzhu1229 » Thu Aug 19, 2021 9:38 pm

Unplug the battery and charger, and then use electrical contact cleaner (or high concentration alcohol if you don't have one, pretty sure you have that because of the environment we are living in right now) and a spare toothbrush to thoroughly clean the contacts of the keyboard connector.
On a Thinkpad you absolutely wanna make sure the battery and charger are both disconnected, or else a fuse blows as soon as the water inside the alcohol touches the keyboard connector!
Since the power button pin is always carrying voltage (unless the power button is pressed down), that pin can very well become oxidised much quicker than any other pin (especially so if you ever had the keyboard connector seated halfway in or pulled out while the laptop is on)
If this is indeed the problem, then it's probably because the oxidised pin is acting like a resistor and the motherboard wants a more extreme voltage drop on the pin to register a press of the power button when the laptop is on compared to when the laptop is off
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