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Tips for Using, Carrying and Protecting your HP Notebook PC
This document pertains to all HP Notebook PCs.
HP notebook computers are designed for use in typical office, school or home environments. Under these conditions and following the guidelines in this document, your HP notebook should present no risk to you or its surroundings. However, normal notebook usage generates heat and uses electricity, so proper precautions should be taken into consideration to prevent personal or property injury. This document outlines basic guidelines for proper use of a notebook computer. For more detailed information, please read the Safety and Comfort guide provided with the product and at
While safety is an important concern, you also want to get the most out of your notebook and avoid costly repairs. Following the guidelines and precautions in this document, your HP notebook can provide years of trouble-free operation.
To reduce the possibility of heat-related injuries or of overheating the computer, do not place the computer directly on your lap or obstruct the computer air vents. Use the computer only on a hard, flat surface. Do not allow another hard surface, such as an adjoining optional printer, or a soft surface, such as pillows or rugs or clothing, to block airflow. Also, do not allow the AC adapter to contact the skin or a soft surface, such as pillows or rugs or clothing, during operation. The computer and the AC adapter comply with the user-accessible surface temperature limits defined by the International Standard for Safety of Information Technology Equipment (IEC 60950).
Environmental tips for HP notebooks
You can significantly reduce risks to your notebook computer by paying attention to the environment around it. Read a section below for simple environmental precautions you can take to help your notebook computer function as designed.
Use your notebook on a hard surface, such as a desk, tray, or table.
Do not use the notebook on your lap or let its warm surfaces make direct contact with your skin. If you want to use it on your lap, rest it on a hard, flat surface, such as a lap tray specifically designed for notebooks.
Do not use the notebook on soft surfaces, such as bed comforters, cushions and pillows, clothing, or carpet. Such surfaces can block the air flow through the vents, which can cause heat to build up within the notebook's enclosure.
If you are unable to view the video, it may be due to the type of mobile device you are using. You can still use the written information on the screen or access the video with a PC or laptop.
Use or store your notebook in environments that conform to temperature and humidity specifications.
Excessive heat or cold can damage your notebook computer and prevent it from operating properly.
Excessive heat can damage key components in the notebook system.
Do not leave the notebook in a hot enclosure, such as a parked car, or in direct sunlight. Either of these can cause heat damage and warping.
Keep the LCD display out of direct sunlight for extended periods of time.
The notebook is designed to automatically throttle its activity when its internal temperature exceeds predefined levels. If its temperature rises too high, the notebook is designed to shut itself down to protect its internal components.
For detailed information about heat-related performance, refer to Fan is Noisy and Spins Constantly, PC is Warmer than Normal.
For detailed information about heat and how it can affect the notebook battery, refer to Battery Charging Delayed When Operating Notebook in High Ambient Temperatures.
Excessive cold can prevent a battery from charging and operating properly.
The typical Lithium-Ion battery used in HP notebook computers cannot charge properly at temperatures of 30 to 50 degrees F (0 to 10 C). At these temperatures, the battery charges extremely slowly and cannot acquire a full charge before the charging cycle times out. For proper operation, move the notebook to a warmer environment where the internal temperature of the battery can rise above 50 degrees F (10 degree C).
If the battery is left in a low temperature environment for 12 hours or more, you must warm the notebook and battery and then perform a hard reset of the notebook.
For detailed information on performing a hard or forced reset, refer to Performing a Hard Reset or Forced Reset.
Use or store the notebook in a clean environment.
Do not use or store the computer in an environment characterized by high humidity, dust, grit, or smoky conditions.
Notebook computers have vents on the bottom and sides to allow air to flow through the inside and cool the internal parts. If these vents become clogged or the heat generating parts get covered in dust, the fan cannot cool the internal components properly. Blow compressed air into the outlet vents to remove the dust that has accumulated and keep the air circulating through the device.
For detailed information about keeping the vents clear, refer to Reducing Heat Inside the PC.
Use clean hands while using the notebook.
Do not use the keyboard with sticky, dirty, or greasy fingers. This can leave debris behind, which can easily contaminate the computer's internal components. Debris on the keyboard can also scratch and stain the notebook display when the lid is closed.
Keep all liquids away from the keyboard.
Keep all liquids, such as coffee, cola, water, or cleaning solvents away from the keyboard.
Do not eat or drink while using a notebook.
Do not use the computer in any wet environment, such as a swimming pool or shower, and protect the components from liquid sources, including rain and lawn sprinklers.
Store the notebook on a hard flat surface.
Do not store a notebook at the bottom of a locker, in a bag full of books, or under anything that can exert enough stress to crack the case or the display.
Do not stack items on top of the notebook computer.
Use only the appropriate stylus or input device on tablet PCs.
Do not use a pen, pencil, or other object to input data to the screen. For HP TouchSmart notebooks, use only a finger.
Electrical tips for HP notebooks
Proper maintenance of the notebook's electrical components, such as the power adapter and power cord, can keep both you and your notebook safe from potential harm. Do not do anything with the notebook or its components that you would not do with other kinds of electrical devices.
Use only the power adapter that came with your HP notebook.
For best performance, use only the power adapter that came with your HP notebook and configure your power management settings for optimal performance based on your usage habits.
For detailed information about battery performance, refer to Improving Battery Performance (Windows 8, 7, Vista).
For detailed information about power management options, refer to Managing Power Options (Windows 8), Managing Power Options (Windows 7 and Vista), or Power Management for Notebooks Running Windows 98, ME, XP and 2000.
Most HP notebooks utilize smart power adapter technology. They can use power adapters from other HP notebooks that may have different wattage requirements.
If you use a power adapter that has a lower wattage than your notebook requires, there may be some trade-offs. The CPU clock rate may be reduced to save power, which may cause programs to run slower, the battery may charge more slowly or not at all, or the power adapter itself may become warm to the touch.
Your power adapter's wattage information is printed on the bottom of the adapter itself.
Figure : Power adapter - 65W
Image of a  65 watt power adapter showing the location of wattage information.
Figure : Power adapter - 120W
Image of a 120 watt power adapter showing the location of wattage information.
For detailed information about battery safety, refer to AC Adapter Makes Hissing and/or Crackling Noise, and May Feel Warm to Touch.
For detailed information about verifying whether the power adapter is working correctly, refer to Testing and Using the AC Power Adapter.
Always plug your notebook power supply into a grounded outlet.
If you do not use a grounded outlet, you may notice an electrical tingling sensation where the palms of your hands touch the notebook during use.
All power adapter certification tests for HP notebook computers are performed using a grounded power adapter. Damage can occur if an ungrounded power adapter is subjected to power surges or electrostatic discharge.
Always store your notebook power cord loosely in a bundle.
Gather the power cord loosely in a bundle when packing it away for storage or transport.
Use a "figure 8" pattern when bundling the cord. This allows for easy storage of the cord, prevents unintentional breaks in the wires, and keeps it from getting tangled.
Figure : Power adapter cord storage
Image of the power adapter and cord properly bundled for storage
Never wrap your notebook power cord around the power adapter or any other object.
Do not wrap the power cord around the power adapter or any other object as this could inadvertently break the cord's internal copper wires.
Figure : Improperly wrapped power adapter cord
Image of power cord improperly wrapped around the power adapter.
Broken wires can short circuit both the power adapter and your notebook's internal power supply. Broken wires can shock anyone who touches the cord and may also present a fire hazard.
Figure : Damaged power adapter cord
Image of a damaged power adapter cord
Use the notebook power adapter on a hard, flat surface.
When a high number of applications are running or when the battery is recharging, the power adapter may be warm to the touch when it reaches its power limit.
Connect the power adapter to a good quality surge protector if your local power supply is unstable.
Transportation tips for HP notebooks
Most notebooks are designed for easy portability, but that does not make them immune to transportation mishaps. If you exercise care with how you handle the notebook, you can reduce the risk of accidents.
Shut down your notebook computer before transporting.
Ensure the notebook is fully powered down when carrying it in a carrying case by either putting it in Hibernate mode or completely shutting the notebook down using the Shut Down button. Closing the lid by itself may not automatically shut the notebook down completely.
Do not put the notebook in a carrying case, bag, or backpack while the power is on or the notebook is in Standby or Sleep mode; all LED lights should be dark. This may cause heat to build up inside of the notebook's enclosure.
Carry your notebook notebook responsibly.
Do not throw, drop, or strike an object with the carrying container or notebook.
For detailed information about protecting your notebook during transport, refer to Use ProtectSmart to Prevent Hard Drive Damage.
Fully close the notebook lid prior to carrying it.
Close the notebook, with nothing in between the lid and the keyboard, prior to carrying it.
Do not put objects, such as pens and paper, between the keyboard and screen and then attempt to carry the partially closed notebook. If the objects move, they can scratch or damage the LCD screen. If pressure is applied to the case and cover, the objects can damage the LCD.
Remove the packing material from between the keyboard and display when you first take the notebook out of its box.
For detailed information about notebook displays, refer to Common Issues with Notebook Displays.
Carry the notebook securely.
Carry the notebook securely, with the lid closed, under one arm or using both hands to hold it. Alternately, use a briefcase or a backpack to carry the notebook. If the computer will be subjected to potential high stress movements (dropping or banging into other objects) carry it in a zero-impact case.
Verify that the battery is locked into place when using an extended or external battery in order to prevent it from coming loose during transport.
Do not carry the notebook with the lid open, or by the hinges. Never pick up or carry the notebook by the LCD screen or lid. Whenever possible, lift the notebook by the lower case with the lid closed. The hinges are not designed to handle the full weight of the notebook. Carrying the notebook while it is open leaves the notebook vulnerable to damage if you drop it as a result of carrying it in such a manner.
Unplug all cords and peripheral devices before moving a notebook.
Always unplug the power adapter cord, mouse, and any other peripheral devices before moving a notebook computer.
Leaving accessories or power adapters connected to a notebook while moving it can damage the accessories and break the notebook connectors. Pulling, twisting, or jamming cords can damage the cords.
Use a security device when using a notebook in a public location.
When using a notebook in a public location, such as a café or a library, use a security device, such as a locking device, to help deter theft.
Do not leave a notebook unattended.
For detailed information about security devices, refer to Using a Kensington Lock.
Battery tips for HP notebooks
It is important to be aware of ways that you can care for the battery in your notebook computer. Certain conditions may reduce battery run time and life span.
For detailed information about battery performance, refer to Improving Battery Performance (Windows 8, 7, Vista).
Plug the AC power supply into the notebook overnight.
Keeping the AC power supply plugged in to the notebook overnight helps keep the battery fully charged and extends the effective battery life.
The duration of a standard internal battery charge depends on the specific notebook model, usage profile, and type of external battery (if any).
Periodically allow the notebook battery to drain completely.
Allowing the battery to drain completely and then fully charging it again, helps the battery stay calibrated.
Do not keep a notebook plugged in with its batteries in place for extended periods. This may cause the battery to lose its calibration and ability to charge correctly.
Use the HP-recommended power management when running on battery power.
The HP-recommended power management options can reduce drain on the battery and minimize the power load to the CPU. This conserves the battery's overall life span and reduces heat buildup inside the notebook.
Cleaning tips for HP notebooks
Dust, dirt, ash, pet hair, and other contaminants can accumulate on or inside your notebook, causing scratches or overheating. You can extend the life of your notebook by removing potentially damaging buildup. Clean your notebook on a regular basis.
HP recommends the following cleaning materials:
  • Compressed air spray, which is available from most computer retailers.
    For detailed information about keeping your notebook clean, refer to Cleaning your Notebook PC.
  • Cleaning solution or monitor wipes intended for use on LCD screens, which are available from most computer retailers.
  • A clean, soft cotton cloth; the type of cleaning towel used for eyeglasses is preferable. For cleaning parts such as the HP webcam lens, use a micro fiber screen dusting cloth.
    For detailed information about webcam lens care, refer to How to Clean the HP Webcam Lens .
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