How to Test and Tag a Laptop

Testing and tagging a laptop involves doing it in two parts: it includes testing both the IEC lead and laptop charger, with each one receiving its own test tag.

The laptop itself doesn't need to be electrically tested, as it is considered a low voltage item. It will however still require a visual inspection.

Testing the IEC lead

There is a wide variety of IEC leads that connect to the laptop charger. This means that some will require an adaptor to plug the lead into your Portable Appliance Tester.

The main types are:

  • Clover leaf - requires adaptor
  • Figure 8 - requires adaptor
  • Standard IEC connections - no adaptor required
  • Apple chargers - no adaptor available

The tests you are required to perform on the IEC lead includes the Earth Continuity, Insulation Resistance and Polarity Test. The only exception would be the Figure 8, as it only requires an Insulation Test.

Testing the Laptop Charger

There are no obvious markings on the charger that state if it's a Class I or Class II appliance. As a result, you must first put the laptop charger through a Class I test. If this test fails, you will need to perform a Class II Double Insulated or Leakage Test.

The reason why this test would fail is because some laptop chargers have an encapsulated earth - meaning the earth enters the charger and is not connected to any exposed metal parts.

Please note: the video focuses specifically on an IEC clover leaf connection.