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How does smoking disable a Laptop?

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seanferd

It probably flat-out states that smoking around the equipment voids the warranty.

While the tar precipitated on the electronics may not be the cause of the problem, the vendor can probably decline to service a unit exposed to cigarette smoke with impunity. Apple, for one, does. Partially because they also don't want to expose the service techs to the tar.

Smoke certainly can damage electronics and foul connections and optical lenses. You can have an independent repair shop have a look at it to determine what the problem is, an whether it actually had anything possibly due to smoke. But Sam's and its subcontractors probably have the right to refuse to service the unit. They certainly do if this limitation is noted in any of warranty or other papers to which you signed agreement when purchasing the unit and servicing contract.