Question: I have installed my laptop memory upgrade but all I get is a blank screen so what could be wrong?

Read our answer below:

If you happen to be greeted with a black screen after installing your new laptop memory upgrade then this doesn't necessarily spell trouble though does warrant further inspection. First things first is to take a deep breath and try the following troubleshooting tips:

  • Check the SODIMM's are properly seated - Unless each SODIMM you installed in firmly in place then it cannot be detected due to a lack of electricity flowing through it. Remove each SODIMM once again and re-insert once more at a 45 degree angle while pushing it in and down until it clicks. If you do not hear it click then this signals a loose connection.
  • Check for dust particles - Sometimes, particularly in older laptops some dust may gather around the pin area of a SODIMM memory slot. Remove any SODIMM(s) where applicable and blow these pins either with compressed air (recommended) or your own blow. Next, re-insert the concerning SODIMM(s) as normal.
  • Determine compatibility conflicts - If you are mixing multiple SODIMM's from more than one manufacturer and/or model number you could be experiencing a conflict that is either the result of your laptop's memory controller failing to get along with them or your laptop's BIOS failing to handle their differences during setup. The former is very rare nowadays and the culprit often rests in your laptop's BIOS being insufficiently programmed to handle newer memory standards. For example, this has known to happen on DDR memory laptops that require PC2700 DDR memory but fail to start when PC3200 DDR memory is inserted, this despite the fact that the latter is backwards compatible with the PC2700 standard. Try and check for a BIOS update for your laptop model, where not possible resist from using SODIMM's that exceed the specification required by your laptop.
  • Confirm the functioning of the SODIMM(s) themselves - In rare cases laptop memory may reach you faulty despite the fact that computer memory is one of the least likely components to fail. To confirm this is indeed the problem that you are facing remove the suspected SODIMM(s) and test them in a different laptop that uses thus supports the same memory specification.
  • Visually inspect the SODIMM(s) - If you suspect your SODIMM(s) to be faulty then prior to exchanging them check them visually. Are any pins damaged? Is the PCB bent? Is the solder of questionable quality or missing in places? If neither of these hold true and it also fails to work in a different laptop then it has probably suffered from static discharge that shows no visible signs of occurring.
  • Experiment with installation - As with all computer hardware the durability of your laptop's memory slots is also prone to malfunctioning. The two causes of this can either be manufacturers using subpar solder or mistreatment of your laptop by way of dropping it on hard surfaces that causes split-second vibration. Whatever the method it can affect the memory slots themselves. Most laptops will have at least two SODIMM memory slots and as such experiment installing your new SODIMM's in varying slots. For best results try only one SODIMM in each memory slot at a time.

Need a helping hand at installing your new laptop memory upgrade? Check up on part 6 of the Laptop Memory Upgrades Guide for an simple step by step visual installation overview.

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