I appear to have some interrmittent problem, and one thing that occurred to me as a possible fix isn't! :-O :-)
My Galaxy S II phone has NEVER FAILED to recharge when plugged into a recharger.
I had one vehicle dock. And, every once in a while, I use it -- primarily for the Google Nav App (which is SO EXTREMELY USEFUL if you aren't familiar with the roads to get help to know exactly where to turn, etc.)!
Every time I "plug" the end of the vehicle dock into the phone, the phone knows it -- even if it doesn't have power at the same time! I have it locked. ONLY when I have plugged the vehicle dock into the phone, the "keypad" used to enter the digits to unlock it shows up very briefly, but it immediately goes to the talk app.
(For those who may not have seen the vehicle dock, the end of it "moves" back and forth. You put the Galaxy S II into the plastic portion with the four corners, and then move the end, with the plug, toward the phone, thus connecting the plug on that "movable portion" into the "jack" of the phone.)
My problem involves power.
Most of the time, when I plug the Galaxy S II into the vehicle dock (of course with the cigarette lighter end portion of the cord plugged into the appropriate "power port" of the vehicle, and I've used my Toyota Corolla and Mom's F-150 pickup truck), I hear a little "beep" and I see a "lightning-bolt" type of symbol in the green battery indicator/icon. Also, when it has power, the 4 "buttons" on the end (menu, applications, return, etc.) light up and never go dark, and the screen never goes dark -- if it has continuous power.
However, occasionally, it doesn't get power. I do NOT hear a beep, see the "lightning-bolt" symbol, and when using the Google Nav app, the screen will go "very dim" if it has been a few seconds to minutes since it last spoke or the screen was last touched. At these times, it DOESN'T have power, so it is running on battery power. When it is like this, the screen will get brighter, temporarily, when it is speaking to me. This afternoon, coming home on I-95, it said "in 2 miles, take exit 201" and the screen got bright -- temporarily. It returned to very dim after a few seconds.
When this first start happening, I was thinking there was something in my vehicle dock, either the cord itself or the plastic portion the phone sits in, likely the movable end that "plugs into the phone".
So, I ordered another vehicle dock!
It came the end of last week.
Sunday I used it in Mom's truck. It worked.
I used it every day this week coming home from work. I know the way very well, but I just wanted to use it a lot to assure it continued working.
It worked every time I tried it -- until yesterday afternoon on the way home! Same symptoms.
I pulled over. I plugged it into a different place in my car, in the console where I have a CHARGER for the phone. No power.
Exact same this afternoon. No power.
Well, I just did some additional experimentation in my car and Mom's truck...
Using a volt meter, I have confirmed that the "power ports" in the vehicles have power. Even though they have power, and I have certainly assured the more obvious things like the cigarette lighter portion is plugged well into the "port", no power. This was true with BOTH vehicle docks, in both vehicles, just now.
As I think in troubleshooting mode, I am now thinking it is less likely that both vehicle docks (and both are not that old, as I only got the phone in October of last year, and the second dock is a week old) are having the same problem!
I am not sure where to touch the red and black leads of the volt meter to the metal portion of the cord, to confirm power. I have not confirmed power on the metal end while the other cigarette lighter end was plugged in, but I am not really sure it is that.
Can anyone provide me any ideas on what this may be; what I may check next?
I'm thinking that you're getting a power surge within the docking station. It's like the DC to AC converter inside of the docking station is shorting and/or over heating. I really don't know why you would continue to buy the faulty device when you could get a phone holder and use the USB charger. Since all you need is a holder this combination works just the same.
I don't see how this could be a problem with the phone (since an issue accepting a charge would be a big deal and talked about here), so it possible that particular dock just has a flawed design that causes them all to occasionally not provide power.
Thank you, animaleyezz and jaylanphnx, for your comments as we continue totry to find the cause of my power problem!
For animaleyezz, among my thoughts on what you wrote, well I have toadmit I hadn't even considered that, or at least that as I interpret andthink on what you wrote! I would say the overheating isn't likely, aswhen I touch the cigarette lighter portion as well as the "power portion"of the vehicle dock that plugs into the phone -- even after it has beenbeen connected to my phone with no power for just over an hour, my commutetime home on Friday, they aren't even that warm. Power surge?... well, Ijust don't know.
As to the "why I would continue to buy the faulty device", I hadn'tdecided for sure where the problem was. I was *thinking* it was likelythe vehicle dock, but when I got a second one, and when the phone stoppedgetting power from one, it also didn't get power on the other, and when ithad power on one, it appears to have it on the other, I was thinking "whatelse could it be", thinking it wasn't as likely the two vehicles docks hadthis same power problem at the same time...
(I even rebooted the phone, wondering whether the length of timebefore connecting it to the vehicle dock [along with whatever else hadbeen run, etc.] potentially made a difference! It didn't seem to...Friday, even after rebooting the phone, it didn't seem to be getting powerfrom either dock...)
I'm a software engineer, and am "more familiar" with troubleshootingsoftware, and I'll have to admit I'm not as familiar with troubleshootinghardware.
But -- for both of you -- I had considered this as a possibility butdon't know enough about the "jack" of the phone to know whether it couldhappen, I wondered whether there was some "pin?" in the connector of JUSTTHE VEHICLE DOCK that may connect to the phone, and this "pin?" eitherdoesn't have some signal or it may even be INSIDE THE PHONE.
(When I look into [compare] the end of the metal part that plugs intothe phone, there appears to be possibly one additional "pin" on thevehicle dock when compared to the rechargers I have...)
In fact, I'll have to say I was thinking more along the lines of itMAY BE inside the phone since I had the problem with 2 independentdocks...
That the phone has a different behavior when plugged into the vehicledock that it DOESN'T HAVE when plugged into a recharger makes me thinkthere is SOMETHING that indicates it is a different type of connection.It has never failed to recharge when plugged into a charger. When pluggedinto the vehicle dock, EVEN WHEN IT DIDN'T HAVE POWER, it behaved in "thatdifferent way" as soon as I moved the end of the dock to "plug into" the"jack" on the phone!
But, from what both of you say, it doesn't appear "as likely" in youreyes that it is a problem in the phone itself. (And, it may not benormal, so it may not BE an issue, but a malfunction in perhaps my phone.That's just the "troubleshooter" inside of me, until I understand thereal/true cause of the problem.)
For animaleyezz, can you give me a URL that describes this "phoneholder" and USB charger? In my car, I don't (by default, unless Ipurchase something with this) have a USB connection on the cigarettelighter plug end, though it plugs into the same jack on the phone (if I'mproperly reading/interpreting what you wrote).
For jaylanphnx, thank you for your taking the time to read andconsider what I posted! Do you think the possibility of something notright with my particular phone is enough of a possibility at this point to
consider, or go right to perhaps what animaleyezz suggested, and find adifferent mechanism for holding the phone on my car's dashboard andproviding power?
Thank you both and anyone else who winds up commenting! :-)
Could you post a link so we can see exactly what kind of dock you're working with? I'd be more likely to declare it the dock's fault if it's some cheapo third-party Chinese KIRF than if it's an official or name-brand accessory.
An excellent question!
I believe it is made by Samsung!
I purchased the first one from T-Mobile, at the same time I purchaseda couple of other accessories, such as the extra battery and a memorycard. Here is the URL of that one:
(That purchase was probably early November of last year.)
The one I got just a couple of weeks ago, I got directly fromSamsung. Here is that URL:
They are IDENTICAL. Even small things such as small bends in thecigarette lighter portion, etc. I believe Samsung made both.
It very well could be that vibrations could be the culprit here.
Well, animaleyezz, that is also something that never occurred to meas even a possibility! Your postings are quite intriguing! :-)
I wasn't thinking so...
The one in my car didn't work last Friday on the way home from work,just over an hour commute. (So, vibrations would have been occuringduring that no-power time. So far as I know, power NEVER came on. The"beep" and the lightning-bolt symbol in the battery icon and the brighterscreen, they probably would have made it obvious if power had come on,albeit briefly.)
After getting home Friday, I took the power meter out and tried in mycar as well as Mom's truck, and neither worked, and neither vehicle wasmoving -- the engine wasn't even started -- during that test. No powerthen, either, with numerous plugging and unplugging of first one of thevehicle docks and then the other dock...
And, so far as I know, when it has worked (has had power) and I'vebeen in moving vehicles, I have never ever seen it NOT have power evenbriefly...
I don't know what else to say, other than I don't think I'll be buying that model of car dock anytime soon.
I'm thinking that the intermittent connectivity caused a short or blown fuse.
I want to thank both of you for continuing to read my messages andtrying to help!
Actually, I do have to report something I've noticed...
The manual says "Start your vehicle before connecting the car adapterto the Vehicle dock."
I really am about certain that on the older dock, I have in factstarted the nav app and put the phone in the dock BEFORE STARTING THECAR... :-(
It says that "Temporary voltage surges during ignition may damage theVehicle dock or the attached mobile phone."
I haven't done this with the newer dock, but I wonder whether myhaving done that could be the cause of this problem??
Status, though, it continues intermittent!
Yesterday, coming home from work, with the smart phone in my vehicledock in my car, no power. This morning, going to work, power was thereand all was fine!
(Hmmm.... as I think on this, I had the vehicle dock already pluggedin yesterday morning when I started the car [and it didn't have power!]and yesterday afternoon I had left the vehicle dock unplugged and I hadstarted the car this morning before even plugging in the cigarettelighter, and it worked this morning! I wonder whether that could be it??)
(If so, it may be a good design... in that if there is any potential power
problems, it just doesn't work until it is unplugged and plugged back in!)
That doesn't seem to fully explain it, though...
Last Friday night, I didn't even start the vehicles, but had to usethe key to turn on power for the Corolla, I don't have to for Mom's truck,and I had them both plugged in and unplugged several times in bothvehicles, and there was never power...
I WILL be paying SPECIFIC ATTENTION now to assuring that the vehicledock cigarette lighter portion of the cord is NOT PLUGGED IN when thevehicle is started, and that I plug it in afterward. And, I'll seewhether that happens to bring an "it has power!" every time...
There doesn't seem to be any fuses in the vehicle dock. I know thereis in the car, but I haven't yet (using my power meter) NOT found power inthe port into which I plugged in the cigarette lighter portion of thecord!
If this now assuring that the dock is not plugged in when startingthe car doesn't seem to fix this, do you suggest I look for a differenttype of vehicle holder, as animaleyezz first mentioned, or see about how Imay check my phone, to see whether there is indeed some problem in it?(And I don't know that there could be a problem in the phone that couldexplain this intermittent behavior.)
If getting a different type of phone holder is a suggestion, I wouldlike to ask, can you give me a URL where I can see a phone holder (for acar) that would provide the power (though the one I have also provides a"jack" for a 3.5mm audio plug, and I do have an AUX port in my Corolla), Imay consider that, too...
Well, a "status" message from the last few days is since realizingthat the manual mentioned to have the engine started before even pluggingin the vehicle dock as well as the smartphone, it hasn't once (yet) failedto provide power!
I've used it at least once a day in my car, usually coming home fromwork, though I used it this morning, as well. At least six uses.
In Mom's truck this weekend, I have used it at least 7 times, betweenerrand destinations.
(Since I now have 2 docks, one now "lives in" Mom's truck and theother "lives in" my car, where I used to have to take the one I havebetween the two vehicles.)
It had worked a number of times before, so I'm going to continue thisusage (for both of them) but I'm hopeful that there is no problem withthem!
And, in fact, it really may be a very GOOD design if upon possiblygetting some power surges or something because it is plugged in as theengine is starting it decides to handle that by "shutting down" andperhaps not working until it is unplugged and reconnected, rather thanallowing the dock or the possibly even connected smartphone to suffer anydamage...
This still doesn't explain that first Friday night, to me, though,but if they continue to work, providing power every time, being used asthe manual does indicate they are supposed to be used (which is a negativeon me), I'm happy! :-)
Say Barry glad to be of some help, if you catch my drift. It'll be nice to get that helpful on my initial answer.
That's totally their fault for putting that in the manual. Who reads those?
Stuff like that is one reason I love my car. It provides power to the outlet at all times, so this provision wouldn't be a problem for me.
Yea I have a 2001 Buick Regal GS, it has a passive outlet (center console) and an active outlet (passenger side of center console) so this would be an issue for me either.
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