Troubleshooting a Dell Keyboard

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    Check Your Connection

    • If the keyboard is not responding to any commands or just some commands, the first thing you should check is the connection between the keyboard and the computer. Unplug the keyboard and check if the cable has any dust on the connection port. If you see dust, simply blow it out gently. Also check if the cable is bent or twisted, which may have caused some of the wires inside to break. If this is the case, the cable might have to be replaced. If your keyboard is wireless, check if the keyboard is synchronized with your computer. To do so, simply check the back or bottom of the keyboard for a sync button. Press the button, and the keyboard should connect with the computer base; you will notice an LED light turn on to confirm the connection. If the light doesn't light up, replace the batteries in the keyboard.

    Eliminate Dust Between the Keys

    • If there are only a few buttons that are not working properly, it is more than likely because there is either dirt or dust underneath or between the buttons affecting the connection. You can clean your keyboard several ways. For example, use a can of pressurized air to blow out the dirt around the keys. Such cans are fairly inexpensive and can be found in most computer stores. Or you can use a vacuum cleaner with a soft-tip attachment to suck up all the dirt. Be careful not to use a too powerful vacuum, as it may suck up the keys right off of your keyboard.

    Clean Beverage Spills

    • Spilling coffee or soda on a keyboard often seems like the end of the peripheral, however, it is still possible in some cases to rescue the keyboard. To clean up after any spills, first disconnect the keyboard immediately after the spill. Place paper towels on the keyboard and absorb as much liquid as you can. If there is sticky residue left over, you will either have to take the keyboard apart as a whole, or take out individual keys to gain access underneath them. Use a screwdriver to gently pry off individual keys and use a towel to clean off any sticky residue. Once you are done, follow the instructions in the previous step to eliminate any dust that may have accumulated as a result. Lastly, pop the keys back onto the keyboard.

    Check Software Issues

    • Depending on the keyboard, your computer may need a new driver to function properly on the computer. You may use your computer's auto update software to look for updates or visit Dell's website to manually download any new drivers. Also, if you are seeing weird characters as you type, you may have set a different language as your default keyboard layout. To change the layout, go into your computer's Control Panel and click "Regional and Language Options." Once in the menu, click the keyboard tab and select the appropriate language choice.

    Send Your Keyboard in for Warranty Repair

    • If all else fails, your keyboard may unfortunately be defective and will have to be sent to the manufacturer for repair.

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