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Tools needed: Precision screwdriver set ($3-6 in a store)
The CMOS Battery`s main focus is your computers BIOS. The BIOS is directly linked to the Time retention on your computer, as well as other things. If you have an issue involving your BIOS, resetting it by taking the battery out and putting back in could fix it, or if the battery is dead, replacing it. The other function of the CMOS battery, is to retain small tidbits of information while your computer is turned off, such as the time like I mentioned before, as well as other things.
What is it? The CMOS battery sounds more complex then it really is. It`s just a large Cell battery (a larger watch battery, to basically) and you can purchase these at any regular store.
In some cases, your computer may have a different type of CMOS battery then a simple button cell battery, where it has wires directly attached to it, making it so that you need to buy a special CMOS battery online or in a computer parts shop.
If you don`t have your computer set to automatically update the time, and you manually set it, but it resets the clock each time you turn your computer off and then back on? It probably means that your CMOS battery has ran out of juice. If you have a BIOS issue, then the easiest way to check to see if your battery is dead, is to set your clock to manually be set, and not automatically update itself, set your clock, restart the computer, and if the clock resets? It means you need a new one.
To replace it/reset your BIOS by taking it out and putting it back in, is simple, and probably one of the easiest things you can do when it comes to maintenance on the hardware inside your computer (besides using an air canister to clean it, of course).
Step 1 - Take a screwdriver and only remove the screws that are attaching the case to the tower.
Step 2 - Remove the case, and look for the battery, like I said it should simply look like a large watch battery (while your case is off, now would be a good time to clean the fans and other hardware with an air canister!).
Step 3 (For simple button cell) - Take a very small Flathead Screwdriver, and use it to pop the battery out. Replace battery with the same one if it`s not dead, or a new one if it is.
Step 3 (For wired CMOS battery) - Look at the pictures at the top for what this will look like, the battery should be covered in a colored plastic, with short wires attached to it. Follow the wires to the white plug, and gently pop it out with a small Flathead screwdriver (Picture above).
Step 4 - Replace battery, put the case back on, put screws back in, and power up your computer. Finished!
For Laptops -
For a laptop, this can seem a little more daunting of a task, but it really isn`t.
Step 1 - Flip your laptop upside down, and look for the screws that are holding your Keyboard in place. They should have a small rectangular box with dots inside it to resemble a Keyboard next to each screw.
Step 2 - Flip the laptop back over, open it up and push upwards towards the screen on the Keyboard to dislodge it, and carefully pull it up, resting it on the area where your touchpad is.
Step 3 - Locate the battery, usually with Laptops you can find the CMOS battery directly under the keyboard, making it so you don`t have to dismantle the entire laptop casing to reach it. Pop it out with a small Flathead screwdriver, replace it, and your done. Now would also be a good time to clean your fans with an air canister to avoid having the Processor damaged at all from over heating due to dust build up.
Step 4 - Put your keyboard back in, slide down towards the touchpad to lock it back in place, then close the lid and flip it over. Put the screws back in, and your finished.