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How to Choose a Replacement Adapter for Your Laptop

by Paul Sanders

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Woman typing on a black widescreen laptop computer

Your laptop makes your office, your entertainment and your important files portable and convenient. You can take your laptop anywhere you go, whether you're working at home, the coffee shop or the park. One of the most important laptop accessories you can have is your laptop adapter or power cord. Your laptop needs power to keep you on the go, and a lost or broken laptop adapter can seriously slow you down. Even if you haven't lost your laptop adapter, you may want to purchase a back-up power cord to keep at home or at the office. Here are some steps to help you quickly find a replacement laptop adapter or power cord, so you can get back to work and play.

Choosing a Replacement Adapter:

  1. Find your laptop's model number. You may find this number located on a sticker on the bottom or side of your laptop computer. If you can't find it there, check your user manual or search your laptop's built-in help program for the model number. You can also find it under your laptop's system properties.

  2. Find your wattage requirements. In addition to your laptop model number, you will need to find out the voltage requirements for the laptop adapter. Laptop adapters have varying voltage (V) outputs, and using the wrong laptop adapter can damage your computer. Check your user's manual for voltage requirements information for your laptop. The output voltage will usually be listed as DC voltage. You may also want to check for product or part numbers that are compatible with your laptop model.

  3. Find a compatible laptop adapter. Look for the compatibility lists in descriptions of laptop adapters you are looking at. Sometimes the compatible laptop models are listed in the product description or in a separate list. Laptop model numbers can often look similar, so make sure the model numbers match exactly. Laptop adapter and power cord product descriptions typically list the manufacturer, part number and a partial description as well. If you find an adapter with the correct output voltage, but the wrong port connector, you may be able to find port attachments that will adapt the connector to the power port on your laptop.

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