Chromebook Won’t Turn On – What To Do

Updated: 7/16/2023

Facing a non-responsive Lenovo Chromebook can be frustrating. In this blog post, we’ll provide you with troubleshooting steps to tackle the issue.

Whether it’s a blank screen, error messages, or unresponsiveness, we’ve got you covered. Let’s get your Lenovo Chromebook up and running in no time.

Understanding the Problem

Before we delve into the solutions, it’s crucial to understand the possible reasons why your Lenovo Chromebook won’t turn on. The issue could stem from a variety of factors, such as a drained battery, faulty power adapter, software glitch, or perhaps a more serious hardware problem.

Basic Troubleshooting Steps

1. Check the Power Connection:

  • Ensure that your Lenovo Chromebook is securely connected to a power source.
  • Verify that the outlet you’re using is functioning correctly by testing it with another device.
  • If the battery was completely drained, allow a few minutes of charging before attempting to power it on.

2. Disconnect External Devices:

  • Unplug any external devices, such as USB drives, mice, or external monitors, that may be connected to your Chromebook. These peripherals can sometimes cause conflicts preventing the device from turning on.

3. Perform a Hard Reset:

  • Simultaneously press and hold the Refresh and Power buttons on your Lenovo Chromebook.
  • This action triggers a hard reset, which can resolve minor software glitches that might be preventing the device from turning on.

Advanced Troubleshooting Steps

1. Boot in Recovery Mode:

  • Press and hold the Esc and Refresh keys together, then press the Power button.
  • If the recovery screen appears, it suggests that your Chromebook’s software may need to be restored.

2. Check for LED Indications:

  • Look for LED lights on your Lenovo Chromebook that indicate the charging status and battery health.
  • If there are no LED lights or they are not responding, it could be an indication of a hardware issue.

3. Remove and Reinsert the Battery (if possible):

  • If your Lenovo Chromebook has a removable battery, carefully remove it and then reinsert it after a few seconds.
  • This action helps to ensure a proper connection between the battery and the device.

4. Perform a Power Wash:

  • A power wash will restore your Chromebook to its factory settings, erasing all local data.
  • To perform a power wash, go to the Settings menu, click on “Advanced,” and select “Powerwash.”

If you’re still having issues, it might be time to bring out the big guns. A powerwash reset will wipe your device clean and bring it back to its factory settings. Just make sure you back up all your important data before you hit that reset button.

Performing a Powerwash Reset on a Chromebook will erase all user data, settings, and apps. Here are the steps to perform a Powerwash Reset on a Chromebook:

  1. Turn off your Chromebook.
  2. Press and hold the Refresh button (circular arrow) and the Power button at the same time.
  3. Release both buttons when the Chromebook boots up and the “Chrome OS is missing or damaged” message appears.
  4. Press Ctrl + D to enter Developer mode.
  5. Press the Space bar to confirm and enable OS verification off.
  6. Wait for the Chromebook to reset and wipe everything. This process may take a few minutes.
  7. Follow the on-screen instructions to set up your Chromebook like new.

Remember to back up any important data before performing a Powerwash Reset.

5. Check for Physical Damage:

  • Inspect your Chromebook for any signs of physical damage, such as a cracked screen or water damage. Physical damage could be causing the issue, and professional repair may be required.

6. Check for Overheating:

  • Overheating can lead to startup issues. Make sure your Chromebook is placed on a flat, hard surface that allows proper airflow. Avoid using it on surfaces like blankets or pillows that can block ventilation.

7. Perform a Battery Reset (for Non-Removable Batteries):

  • If your Lenovo Chromebook has a non-removable battery, you can try performing a battery reset. This involves pressing a reset button (usually located on the bottom of the device) using a paperclip or a similar tool. Refer to the user manual or Lenovo’s support documentation for specific instructions.

8. Update Chrome OS:

  • Keeping your Chrome OS up to date is crucial for optimal performance and bug fixes. If your Chromebook manages to turn on but experiences frequent startup issues, make sure to update the operating system to the latest version available.

9. Try a Different Power Adapter:

  • In some cases, a faulty power adapter might be the cause of startup problems. Borrow or purchase a compatible power adapter and try it with your Chromebook to rule out any issues with the original adapter.

10. Check The Screen:

  • Sometimes the screen may be the issue instead of the device itself. Check if the screen is damaged, or cracked, or if there are any loose connections.

11. Troubleshoot With A USB Drive:

  • Sometimes, your Chromebook may be experiencing issues that prevent it from booting up properly.
  • To troubleshoot this, you can try creating a recovery USB drive on a separate computer, then using it to boot up your Chromebook.
  • From there, you can access the Chromebook Recovery Utility and attempt to repair any issues with your device.

12. Seek Professional Assistance:

  • If none of the above steps resolve the issue, it is recommended to contact Lenovo customer support or consult a certified technician for further assistance.

Related: Mastering Screenshot On Chromebook (Take, Edit and Send)

Best Practices for Maintaining Your Chromebook

Prevention is always better than cure, and that holds true for your Chromebook as well. Here are some best practices to keep your device running smoothly and prevent future issues:

Keep Your Chromebook Updated:

  • Regularly update your Chromebook’s operating system and applications to ensure you have the latest bug fixes and security patches. This helps prevent potential software conflicts or vulnerabilities that could lead to startup issues.

Safe Shutdown:

  • Always shut down your Chromebook properly by selecting the “Shut down” option from the menu. Avoid abruptly turning off the power or closing the lid while the device is still running, as it can cause data corruption or hardware problems.

Battery Care:

  • Avoid overcharging your Chromebook. It’s best to unplug it once it reaches full charge to extend battery life. Also, try to avoid letting the battery drain completely too often, as this can shorten its lifespan.

Avoid Overheating:

  • Overheating can impact the performance and reliability of your Chromebook. Ensure proper ventilation by using the device on a flat, hard surface that allows air to circulate freely. Avoid covering the vents or using the Chromebook on soft surfaces like pillows or blankets that can obstruct airflow.

Protect from Physical Damage:

  • Handle your Chromebook with care and avoid subjecting it to physical shocks or impacts. Use a protective case or sleeve to shield it from accidental drops, scratches, or spills that could potentially damage internal components.

Cleanliness and Maintenance:

  • Regularly clean your Chromebook to remove dust, dirt, and debris. Use a soft, lint-free cloth slightly dampened with water or a mild cleaning solution to gently wipe the screen, keyboard, and exterior surfaces. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials that could scratch or damage the device.

Power Source Considerations:

  • When charging your Chromebook, ensure you use a compatible and reliable power source. Avoid using third-party chargers or uncertified accessories that may not deliver the correct voltage or cause power-related issues.

Use a Surge Protector:

  • A surge protector can protect your Chromebook from power surges that may damage its internal components.

Backup Your Data:

  • It’s always a good practice to regularly back up your important data to an external storage device or cloud service. In the event of a startup issue or hardware failure, having backups ensures you don’t lose valuable files and can easily restore them on a new or repaired device.

Common Error Messages

Here are some common error messages you might encounter and their possible solutions:

“Chrome OS is missing or damaged. Please insert a recovery USB stick or SD card.”

This message indicates that the Chrome OS software on your Chromebook is either missing or corrupted. To resolve this issue, follow the instructions provided in the “Boot in Recovery Mode” section earlier in this article to restore the Chrome OS using a recovery USB stick or SD card.

“No bootable device found” or “No bootable disk found.”

These messages suggest that your Chromebook is unable to detect a bootable device. Ensure that there are no external devices connected to the Chromebook and check if the internal storage is properly connected. If the issue persists, you may need to contact Lenovo support for further assistance.

“An unexpected error has occurred.”

This generic error message can occur due to various reasons. Try performing a hard reset by pressing the Refresh and Power buttons simultaneously. If the error persists, proceed with the advanced troubleshooting steps mentioned earlier, or consider reaching out to Lenovo support for further guidance.

“Sign-in Error” or “Authentication Error”:

These errors typically occur when there’s an issue with the user’s Google account or their internet connection.

“Your Chromebook needs to be repaired.”

This error message typically appears when the Chromebook’s hardware requires professional repair. If you encounter this message, contact Lenovo support or an authorized repair center to have your device examined and repaired by certified technicians.

“Battery not detected” or “Plugged in, not charging.”

These messages indicate potential issues with the Chromebook’s battery or charging system. Ensure that the power adapter and charging cable are securely connected. If the problem persists, refer to the “Battery and Charging Issues” section earlier in this article for troubleshooting steps.


A Lenovo Chromebook that won’t turn on can disrupt your productivity, but it’s usually a fixable issue. By following these troubleshooting steps, you can likely get your device back in working order. Remember, when in doubt, don’t hesitate to reach out to Lenovo Support for assistance.

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J.S. is the owner, content creator, and editor at I’ve worked in the IT and Computer Support field for over 20 years. The server hardware in my computer labs has mostly been IBM, but I’ve supported Dell, HP, and various other hardware. In addition, as part of my lab administrator responsibilities, I’ve learned, supported, and repaired/upgraded network hardware such as Cisco routers and switches. READ FULL BIO >>