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I was recently caught in a thunderstorm with no umbrella while my laptop was in my backpack. Since then, when I press keys on the right side of my keyboard, it registers them as several keypresses. For example, Backspace is interpreted as Backspace f. n is interpreted as space n.

My laptop is not under warranty, and I do not want to pay for a diagnostic. I am prepared to purchase and install a replacement keyboard, but I want to be sure my symptoms are indicative of a problem with the keyboard itself, rather than some deeper problem.

Note: When I plug in an external keyboard, it works perfectly.

Edit: I replaced my keyboard, and still have the same symptoms.

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2 Answers 2

up vote 7 down vote accepted

That is a symptom of a keyboard that has water / moisture damage. Diagnostic tools really don't dig into issues like that anyway - buy a replacement keyboard.

I work in PC repair and have seen this many times...

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Well, I replaced my keyboard, but I still have the same symptoms. –  Matthew Sep 16 '11 at 22:13

Yes, what you describe is consistent with water damage to the keyboard.

There is some slight potential of recovering a water-damaged keyboard by following the advice here.

However, since you say that the keyboard is still failing after replacement, it's likely that one of the connections to the keyboard had become shorted out. I'd suggest first examining the cables that connect to the keyboard, and any interfacing connectors. Look for spots where water ran into the works and perhaps carried some dust with it, resulting in a partial short. You may even want to try washing some parts per the above instructions. (Most electronic parts can stand washing if you don't submerge them too long, and dry them thoroughly -- at least 24 hours.) Or you can buy an electronic cleaner spray at Radio Shack or an electronic supply house and give that a try.

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