Microsoft Surface won’t turn on, start up or wake from Sleep

The panic is intense when your Surface won’t turn on. There could be so many things wrong with the device, and you might not have any idea as to what went wrong. When you can’t even get your Windows Surface to boot you cannot do anything to figure out what is wrong. There might not be many people who are familiar with your device. So, do you need to rush to a service center? Hold on. If your Surface running Windows 10 does not turn on, start, boot, or wake from sleep, here are a few things you can do to fix the problem.

Surface won't turn on

Surface won’t turn on

This is for Surface boot problem on Windows 10 in particular. When you see that Surface has turned off and it won’t turn back on when you press the Power button and that nothing changes with the unresponsive black screen like in an off state or power-saving mode, here are the things you could try.

1] Press power button

Yes, this is too obvious even to mention but do give it some time and then try switching it back on by pressing the power button just once. Wait for a minute or two just in case it works. Sometimes it does. If it doesn’t, read on.

2] Charge the device

Sometimes the charge drops so low that the device just won’t turn back on. If the battery is completely drained, put the device on charge for 10 minutes before trying to turn it on again. It might show the charging sign for up to 15 minutes before responding to the power button.

3] Use hotkeys to wake Surface

If you have a keyboard connected, use this hotkey combination. Press the Win+Ctrl+Shift+B keys all at once.

If you don’t have the keyboard connected, there is a way for the tablet mode too. Quickly press the Volume Up+Volume Down buttons simultaneously thrice. It should be brisk, and you will need to press both the volume buttons thrice within 2 seconds.

If you hear a short beep after this, and Windows is refreshing, this solution worked. If it didn’t, try the next one.

4] Try the forced restart method

Force shutdown Surface and restart by pressing down on the power button for 30 seconds. Do not release the power button before 30 seconds even if the screen starts responding. If this works, charge your device up to at least 40% and then install the latest updates for Windows and Surface so that the device functions perfectly. If this solution doesn’t work, there is another way to go about it.

5] Clean Surface Book connectors

You need to try cleaning every connector between the keyboard and the Clipboard.

  1. First, you will need to detach the Clipboard from your keyboard.
  2. Then you will have to clean all the pins on the connector with the help of an eraser.
  3. Finally, you need to clean the pins with a cotton dipped in rubbing alcohol. Clean the part of the pin that goes into the narrow Surface socket. Dry every bit out thoroughly before plugging the Clipboard back with the keyboard.

6] Run reboot command in a Windows PE session

You can still try the last resort for DIY though. Here’s how.

  1. Create a bootable USB image from any PC.
  2. Boot Surface from the USB drive in the off state.
  3. Press Shift + F10 when you see the Windows setup box.
  4. Write wpeutil reboot in the command prompt.
  5. Hit Enter and remove the USB drive immediately.

Your device will reboot and restart normally if this works out right.

If nothing works for you, you may need to take the device to a service center.

Related reads:

  1. Windows will not wake up from Sleep Mode
  2. How to Restore, Refresh, Reset Surface Pro devices
  3. Windows 10 fails to boot.
Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags

Karan Khanna is a passionate Windows 10 user who loves troubleshooting Windows problems in specific and writing about Microsoft technologies in general.