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is my tablet going to explode?

 
Posts: 7531
Location: Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep clay/loam with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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The screen on my dell tablet is lifting along the lower left hand edge progressing around the left corner and up that side.  I can press it back but it only stays in place briefly, no reassuring 'click' so I've used a couple clips along the edge.  

I thought it might be because of the heat as our house is fairly warm when the temperatures rise outside.

Then I made the mistake of searching online for a reason and found people talking about bulging batteries and possible explosions.

Other than being clipped together it's all working as good as ever.  I'm used to the duct tape type of fixes so this exploding battery thing has got me stumped.

As far as I know there's no removable battery just a port for charging.  
I bought it refurbished six years ago.
 
pollinator
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Location: Canadian Prairies - Zone 3b
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It's true that there's a lot of energy stored in those rechargeable lithium batteries, and they deserve some respect. For that reason, I don't like to leave laptops or tablets plugged in when I'm sleeping or not around.

Can you see or feel any physical deformity (bulging) on the unit? Does it get uncomfortably warm when charging? Those would be flags to me.

Also, check the Dell website for recalls of that model. In the face of liability and reputation damage, manufacturers have gotten better at recalling a bad batch of batteries.

Otherwise I would personally keep using the unit. (I would be more worried about security gaps in an old version of Android.)
 
Judith Browning
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Thanks for the helpful post Douglas

It does get warm to hot but only at the upper right hand corner....diagonally from the corner where the screen is lifting and opposite from the charging port.  I notice the warmth when I watch a video or if I've had it on for a while.

It is cool while charging when the tablet is off though and if I'm just reading a book on it.

I tend to leave it plugged in all the time but since this is happening I'm unplugging at night.  

No noticeable bulge.

I'm not sure how long they are intended to last but I was hoping this one had some life left...good idea to check for recalls.  

 
Douglas Alpenstock
pollinator
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Tablets can last a long time. But the manufacturers stop pushing out security updates to force you to upgrade. (Same with smart phones.) Shame! Perp walk time!

But old ones are fine as e-readers, music players, casual web browsers etc. I would never, ever enter important passwords in an out-of-date unit though.
 
pollinator
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"Lithium ion polymer" batteries are usually the thin ones for custom fit spaces and they can bulge quite a lot, but fortunately they don't explode much.

"Lithium ion" batteries are more likely to overheat, burn, or explode when charging goes bad on them - that's probably not what you have.
 
Judith Browning
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thanks again everyone!

at the moment I'm holding the screen down with three wooden clothes pins and two clips.  
I did some more reading and I came across replacing a screen with 3m double sided tape that is made for electronics.  While looking at the opening I could see glue residue in a few places and I'm back to thinking it was from summer heat in our house and old age.

Has anyone replaced a screen with that sort of tape? This has only lifted from two sides so I'm hoping I don't have to remove the screen completely?

Everything is working as normal, touch screen, charging, etc...no overheating.
 
pollinator
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I have replaced a bulging battery on an iPhone before - it's usually not too big of a deal.

Search Amazon for a replacement that fits your tablet model, then search online for an article or video tutorial on how to remove the screen and replace the battery on your particular device (you may need a specialized tool, usually not that expensive). Follow the instructions, and, you now have a perfectly working device( a new battery usually last longer per charging cycle too(for awhile)).
 
Douglas Alpenstock
pollinator
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Just wondering: are we all overthinking this? If this were my old tablet, I would whip out my mini roll of 1" Gorilla tape, seal the edges except for the ports/switches, and keep going. That stuff is ridiculously sticky and more-or-less permanent. But maybe too crazy?
 
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I have some real world experience with this.

I had an iPhone 5s, which is a beloved and popular model for its compact form factor and ergonomics.  Loved that phone.  I had it for 6 years.

Well, Apple hates that.   There's a secret algorithm they put into your phone to literally slow it down after a few years and make it use more and more resources, even though the processor and memory are as good as they ever were. So between me playing Pokemon Go and also the secret algorithm, my phone would get pretty hot, and I would have to stop playing pokemon go and let my phone cool off.  Fully aware that this is an artificial, BS situation caused by Apple wanting me to upgrade a perfectly good phone.

But see, it doesn't matter.  Heat is the enemy of electronics.  Like waves lapping away at the sandcastles of your device.  The heat causes the lithium polymers to expand, ever so gently, so they swell.  Then they heat up again and that swell swells.  Then that swelled swelled swell swells. And so on.  Thousands of times.  Like a shoehorn jackknifing inside of your tablet, pressing against the walls.

Until your screen pops off.  I mean, everything still works, right?  The screen works.  The buttons work.  Just looks a little ugly, right?

So I put purple duct tape across my phone to keep the screen in place and happily kept using it.

In Costa Rica my ex-girlfriend and I were hanging over a balcony basking in the light of the golden sunset over the jungle.  Monkeys were leaping from tree to tree in the valley below us.  It was an amazing moment.  One of those times you just have to take a selfie to remember it.

I reached for my phone, turned to take the selfie, and the phone moved in my hands like it was alive.  The duct tape gave way, the screen flung itself back, and the battery inside visibly expanded with a fizzing noise.  The control thumb button popped out and tumbled away into the rain forest, lit with flecks of golden sunlight as it fell into the embrace of the jungle.

Later when I went to claim a replacement, the tech support guy simply would not accept that I'd been using a 5s for six years.  He kept saying "That model has been discontinued."  And I kept saying I never dropped it, not once, never spilled on it, never cracked the screen.  Just used it day after day for years and I'd like another one please.  He asked me to send him a picture of it.  I did.  He said, where is the thumb button?  I said, in a monkey's nest somewhere in the rain forest of Costa Rica because your BS algorithm that heats up older phones.  

I didn't win that one. So I got an Android.

 
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