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  • How to dispose of a laptop that can’t be recharged in order to wipe the drive

    Home Forums AskWoody support Windows Windows 10 Questions: Win10 How to dispose of a laptop that can’t be recharged in order to wipe the drive

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      • #2389492
        BobStr
        AskWoody Plus

        I have a Microsoft Surface 2 which I need to dispose of. I won’t list everything I hate about it. Suffice it to say that the last straw was that it became hit or miss whether I could even recharge it – the charger just wouldn’t maintain an electrical connection. The thing has now sat long enough that it won’t start up; the battery has drained and I can’t recharge it at all.

        Which creates this problem: I can’t start up Windows in order to use software to wipe the drive before I dispose of it.

        I suppose I could buy a new charger, in the hope that I’d be able to recharge the computer one last time in order to wipe the drive, but I’m reluctant to spend more money on a piece of garbage that I simply want to throw away. Plus, I don’t even know that a new charger would work, so that potentially would entail another $30 wasted, and I’d still have the laptop on my hands.

        I’m guessing that the solution involves some sort of physical destruction, but exactly what to do in that regard is beyond me. I can’t even tell how to open up the thing to see what’s inside.

        I could always leave it in my basement until I died, when it would become my heirs’ problem, but it would be more satisfying to destroy this thing before I’m gone. Thus I’d appreciate any suggestions on how to handle this problem.

        Thanks.

      • #2389506
        anonymous
        Guest

        ? says:

        from Cnet “cracking open- microsoft Surface 2”

        ifixit: teardown:

        another ifixit teardown:

         

        2 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2389656
          BobStr
          AskWoody Plus

          Now that I’ve seen those videos, I hate this computer even more.

          Didn’t think it was possible.

          So thanks. I mean it!

          • #2389812
            anonymous
            Guest

            ? says:

            you are most welcome, Bob. i’m in the break out the hair dryer and soften the glue camp…

            • #2389862
              BobStr
              AskWoody Plus

              No hair dryer in this house, so I started out by trying to pry the screen off without such preparation, resulting in a cracked screen. Which doesn’t bother me, since I just want to destroy the hard drive. Though I will say that now, I want to destroy it more than ever.

              I have some hot/cold gel wraps for my knees, so now I’m going to try using them to soften up the remains.

              By the way, I came across another video on getting inside the Surface Book 2 (which is what I have — I left off the “Book” in my original post). Here’s the link, if anyone’s interested in seeing how entertaining it can be to deal with this issue.

      • #2389522
        Susan Bradley
        Manager

        Take a hammer.  Get your frustrations out at the same time.  Wear safety goggles.

        Susan Bradley Patch Lady

        2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2389527
        alejr
        AskWoody Lounger

        *** WARNING ***

        If you go with the hammer idea (or some other really destructive method), be sure to place it IN something that’ll contain all the pieces that’ll come flying off — especially shards from the “glass” display panel.

        Also, even though they “seem” to be dead, beware of damaging the batteries as lithium batteries can catch fire and even explode if there’s any charge left in them at all.

        Finally, since it’s e-waste, don’t just throw it in the trash, take it to a local e-waste disposal center.

        5 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2389542
          Sky
          AskWoody Plus

          Also, even though they “seem” to be dead, beware of damaging the batteries as lithium batteries can catch fire and even explode if there’s any charge left in them at all.

          While you would probably be fine, I would really emphasise this. You do not want to have to evacuate your house because of a breached battery! While it’s a pain to get in to, it does look for anonymous’ videos that it is possible to do so, so you can take out the drive and then just give that the hammer treatment.

          2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2389577
        OldPM63049
        AskWoody Plus

        I personally like to use a drill and put several holes through the case and plates inside.  Do wear some protection for your eyes and hands.  Offer a toast to the computer gods for all the good and bad times you had for the device.  Disposing of the refuse as e-waste another excellent idea. Have fun!

        • #2389773
          cmptrgy
          AskWoody Plus

          I have also used a drill and haven’t ever drilled into a battery.
          If the drive is removable regardless of which product is the case, I remove it and then drill through it.
          — Since there is an e-waste facility in my area, I bring the laptop there along with the removed/drilled drive.
          @bobstr, is there an e-waste facility in your area?
          — BTW, I haven’t serviced a Microsoft Surface product yet: however, I imagine the same principle should apply.
          — With that said and since I don’t like to assume something I’m not aware of, it appears to me that the battery isn’t removable by the user in the Microsoft Surface 2 in this topic: is that true?

          If the drive isn’t removable, I believe I would drill through the drive where it is located in the device.

          HP EliteBook 8540w laptop Windows 10 Pro (x64)

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2389859
            BobStr
            AskWoody Plus

            Yes, we do have an e-waste facility just a couple miles from where I live. It’s part of what is basically the county dump. The last time I made a drop-off there the e-waste part of it was open only a couple days a week, and there’d be a long line unless you got there when it opened at 8 am. But checking just now, they’re open 5 days a week, so they’re making it more convenient for people.

            After watching a few videos, I’m unclear on whether/ how easily the battery can be taken out (one video said it’s soldered in there). I’m going to assume that if I can destroy the hard drive, my end of things will be handled well enough, since the entire mess — the whole laptop and the battery, attached or not — will be headed to e-waste.

            But thanks for the suggestion about drilling. Regardless of whatever the videos say, I won’t know anything about my competence to unattach the drive from whatever is holding it in place, so even if removing it, as opposed to simply accessing it, proves to be too much trouble, I’ll go the way of the drill.

            1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389602
        wavy
        AskWoody Plus

        take it to a local e-waste disposal center.

        And you would think there would be one just about every where. But heck no even in suburban Westchester its a trip on certain days to dispose of disposables.

        🍻

        Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
      • #2389708
        Alex5723
        AskWoody Plus

        Before smashing the laptop take out the storage and RAM (if not glued:-)

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2389762
          BobStr
          AskWoody Plus

          I don’t mind sounding dim.

          I’m not familiar with the way you’re using the word “storage.” Is that the hard drive, or something else?

          Thanks.

      • #2389795
        Charlie
        AskWoody Plus

        It seems a shame to destroy and get rid of the screen.  If possible, I would try to disconnect the screen and keep it for some other possible use.  But that’s me, I like to tinker and repurpose.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2389861
          BobStr
          AskWoody Plus

          I’ve already tried that, and the screen is now cracked. Apparently, Microsoft really doesn’t want people taking the thing apart. My guess is that they want people to be sure to have them do any repairs, so they get to charge for it.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389816
        Alex5723
        AskWoody Plus

        I don’t mind sounding dim.

        I’m not familiar with the way you’re using the word “storage.” Is that the hard drive, or something else?

        Thanks.

        Storage is a hard drive, SSD drive, M2.SSD drive…

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2390078
        Pepsiboy
        AskWoody Lounger

        Why not try what I do with old HDD’s and memory. Use it for target practice. Reduces m stress level a LOT ! ! ! !

        Dave

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2390897
        WSnigelxxx
        AskWoody Plus

        six six inch nails works every time and its fun to do just be safe while you enjoy

      • #2390895
        anonymous
        Guest

        got to say i went hard core and a few 6inch nails and a big hammer no one going to be able to get anything off my laptop lol

         

        easy when you know how

         

        nigel

      • #2391033
        krism
        AskWoody Plus

        If that has an M.2, even the old 961 (which is what I am running) I would definitely take it apart with the sole objective of extracting that and adding it to my parts boxes. The rest is worthless.

        - ThinkPad T570-20HA, i7-7600U, 2.8GHz, UEFI/GPT, 16GB, Sammy 256GB M.2 NVMe PM961. -

      • #2391121
        Susan Bradley
        Manager

        Don’t mind me, just doing a test.

        Susan Bradley Patch Lady

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