How to Fix When Your Surface Laptop Won't Turn On

Unlike most traditional laptops, Microsoft Surface Laptop uses proprietary UEFI firmware developed by Microsoft to improve device protection and security, and its exclusive features support hardware functionality and diagnostics. It will show you a message or an icon on the screen when it finds something wrong during the booting process. So you will know what is wrong and what you should do to fix the issue. That includes when your laptop is overheating or has a low battery.

However, there are so many other causes that can also prevent your laptop from turning on. And some won’t show any messages or any signs on the screen. To help you resolve those problems, we will walk you through all possible issues and how to fix them with a step-by-step guide.

Why My Surface Laptop Won’t Turn On

To help you determine the issue that stops your Surface Laptop from turning on, here are the typical causes, starting with the most familiar and straightforward to fix.

  • Overheating – Your Surface Laptop can be overheating after playing games or intense usage in a superheated environment or beneath plain sunlight. When the temperature reaches an extreme temperature, your laptop will turn off and temporarily refuse to turn on until the device temperature recovers to an optimal temperature. In this case, you will see a thermometer icon on the screen when you attempt to turn it on.
    Surface Laptop Overheating
  • The battery is too low – It occurs when you leave your laptop for an extended period. Or there is a battery draining issue on your Microsoft Laptop. Unlike standard laptops, the Surface has its new modern standby feature to keep your laptop life updated even if it’s in sleep mode. When in normal condition, it barely drains the battery. However, some traditional software processes may prevent your laptop from entering standby mode. In this case, you see a low battery icon on the screen when you attempt to turn it on.
    Surface Laptop with Low Battery
    NoteWhen it is empty, you can expect nothing to appear on the screen when you try to turn it on.
  • Surface charging issue – If you’ve tried to charge your Surface Laptop and it still won’t turn on, it might be an issue with the charger and cable. The original Surface charger has an LED on the connector at the end of the cable. The LED will glow up when it’s charging. Inversely, a flashing light or no light at all means it’s not charging.
    Surface Laptop Charging Issue
  • Defective connected accessories – There is a case in which some faulty accessories can stop your Surface Laptop from turning on. Your laptop might detect a short circuit inside those accessories and refuse to turn on. Another potential is a connected USB drive or SD card holding bootable files your computer might attempt to boot.
    Surface Laptop Stuck on Microsoft Logo
  • Stuck in standby or sleep mode – Some un-optimized background processes might prevent your Surface Laptop from waking up when you press the power button or keyboard.
  • Dead battery. It could happen when you regularly use your laptop for years. Your battery might wear and stop charging enough to turn on your computer.
  • Hardware issue – Most defective hardware components will likely interrupt the booting process. Among those, the motherboard is the most integral part of a system. If there is a loose cable, connector, or faulty components on the mainboard, you’ll require an expert or contact Microsoft for repair.

Troubleshooting Guide for Surface Laptop That Won’t Turn on

Now it’s time to fix your Surface Laptop problem that won’t wake up or turn on. When you press the power key and see nothing appear on your laptop screen, one of the following solutions will help your laptop to turn on again.

Recharge Your Surface Laptop

One of the most common reasons your Microsoft Laptop won’t turn on is when your laptop has a low or empty battery. To protect the battery from wear or death, Microsoft has developed multi-level safeguard features from Windows to the device’s firmware to stop your laptop from turning on.

To resolve this issue, you must recharge your laptop using the original charger with your computer or any compatible power adapters. To do so:

Recharge Surface Laptop for 15 minutes

  1. Plug your Surface charger into an outlet.
  2. Plug the Surface charging cable into the laptop charging (Surface Connect) port. The port is on the right side of the laptop base.
  3. Charge it for 5 to 15 minutes, depending on how powerful the charger is. Try to turn it on again by pressing the power key on the keyboard.

If your Surface Laptop fails to boot, leave it on charge for an hour and try again. If it fails again, follow the next step to check the Surface power supply and cable.

Check Your Surface Laptop Charger

If your Surface Laptop still resists turning on after you tried plugging in the charger in the previous solution, it could be an issue with your Surface charger adapter, connector, or cable.

To verify that, you can check the LED light on the end of the connector. When you plug in an original charging cable, the LED will let you know if your laptop is correctly charging. Otherwise, check the following solutions.

Verifying Surface Laptop Charging

  • Solution 1 – Reverse the charging connector: The Surface charging connector is magnetic and reversible. If there are some loose or don’t firmly connect on one side, you can try to turn it upside down and connect it again. Check the LED to see if it lights up or not.
  • Solution 2 – Check your power cord: Verify that the Surface charger power cord is connected firmly to the power socket. The power outlet is connected to a power source and turned on.
  • Solution 3 – Check your Surface charger: The charger has a detachable AC plug. Make sure the connector is firmly attached.
  • Solution 4 – Clean your Surface charging connector: Unplug your charger from the outlet and your Surface. Use a dry tissue to rub around the connector pins. Make sure there is no rust or dirt.
  • Solution 5 – Try another charger: The original Surface charger is cross-compatible among all Surface devices except the original Surface RT/2/3 and Surface Pro/Pro 2. If you have a charger from Surface Go, Pro, or Book with the same connector, it will be 100% compatible with your Surface Laptop.
Note Surface Laptop 3 and Surface Laptop 4 have USB-C ports that support charging with a Power Delivery compatible charger or power bank.

Remove Surface Laptop Accessories

To make sure none of the connected accessories interrupt the booting process, try to remove each accessory one by one and turn it on:

  1. Remove all storage devices, including USB drives and SD cards.
  2. If you use Surface Dock, disconnect it from your laptop and charge it with a charger instead.
  3. Disconnect peripherals from all ports, including the charger.

If your computer turns on successfully, the last accessory you remove may be the trouble.

Waking up a Surface Laptop with Shortcut Keys

If you have an outdated OS build, drivers, or firmware, you might face issues that Microsoft hasn’t addressed lately. Your Surface Laptop can get stuck while it’s in sleep mode. Microsoft recommends waking up your laptop using hotkeys.

To do so, on the integrated keyboard or a connected external keyboard, press the following keyboard shortcut:

Win + Ctrl + Shift + B

Wake Up Surface Laptop with keyboard shortcuts

If it works, don’t forget to update your Surface Laptop to the latest updates available through Windows Updates.

Soft Reset or Force Restart a Surface Laptop

If your Surface Laptop refuses to wake up or start after following the steps above, there is a way to force shutdown your Surface Laptop.

ImportantThis process might result in data loss if you have unsaved documents that don’t have the automatic saving feature turned on.

To perform a force shutdown on the Surface Laptop (1st Gen), Surface Laptop 2, Surface Laptop 3, Surface Laptop 4, Surface Laptop 5, Surface Laptop Go, Surface Laptop Go 2, Surface Laptop Studio, and Surface Laptop SE:

Surface Laptop Power Key

  • Press and hold the power key on the keyboard until your Surface Laptop turns off and restarts to the Windows logo. It takes about 20 seconds, then releases the power button.

Contact Microsoft Technical Support

If you’ve tried all the steps above and have had no luck, your Surface Laptop might have a hardware issue. You should contact the store you purchased your laptop from or contact your local Microsoft Store for technical support. Alternatively, Microsoft also provides an online device service and repair portal where you can request a repair order for your laptop. To do so:

  • Go to
  • Sign in with your Microsoft Account.
  • Expand a registered Surface model for which you want to make a repair order.
  • Select Info and support.
    Select a Surface device you want check info and support information
  • Select Start order.
    Start an order for your select Surface device
  • Choose “Device” from the “Category” options.
  • Choose “Will not turn on” from the “Issue type” options.
  • Describe your issue in the textbox and click Next.
    Complete service and repair order information
  • Follow the instructions to fill out your shipping address and other information.