Sansa Clip Zip battery won't charge, goes straight to song screen

This is my third Sansa MP3 players.  The first one was a Sansa Fuze with the round turn button.  Loved that one but my husband needed it more than I did so I gave it to him.  It’s old but the player is still kicking today.  

The second one was a Sansa Fuze+ with the touch pad.  The touch pad was way too sensitive but I needed it to play just two songs for sleep therapy so I was all right with it until the battery suddenly stopped charging a few months ago, I posted my problems in the Sansa Fuze+ forum.  After trying some suggestions I finally accepted that it was a goner.

I bought this Sansa Clip Zip 4G thinking it should last me at least a while because I didn’t use it every day.  In fact, I only needed it when I had problems sleeping at night;  I probably used it once every two weeks or so.  I used my laptop to charge the unit, didn’t have any problems until now.  

The last time I charged it was 2 weeks ago, to 98% full - the thing never indicated 100% so it was a bit odd.  Anyway, I had problems sleeping two nights ago so I pulled out the Clip Zip and noticed the battery still had a lot of juice left.  This morning I checked the battery it still had 68% but I thought I might needed it again tonight so better charge it up, just in case.  

I connected it to my computer but it didn’t show the “connected” screen.  Instead, it went straight to the last song that I listened to.  I thought that was odd so I turned the player off then tried again.  Of course, it went straight to the same song screen.  I did notice the battery icon was showing “filling”.  I thought if I left it connected to the pc long enough it would eventually charge.  Two hours later I checked the computer and it indicated the battery of the player was critically low.  I disconnected then reconnected it and this time it said 98% charged.  I charged it a bit longer just in case then I used the player for about 15 minutes and the player turned itself off.  Connected it to the pc and now it said battery was critically low, so the past few hours didn’t charge the battery but draining it instead!

My last attempt was to plug it into a wall charger and guess what?  It went straight to the song screen again.  Unlike hooking it to the computer, I could actually turn the player off but that way didn’t charge the battery, neither.   This is the exact same problem as my second player, the Sansa Fuze+. 

I bought the last two Sansa players simply because I really liked the first one which of course had been discontinued long time ago.  I don’t know if I have bad luck or this is just a common problem among Sansa players but one way or the other I won’t be buying any more Sansa in the future.  This is one big name that comes with big disappointment!   :grumpycat:

You might try manually reapplying the latest firmware–see the firmware sticky thread above.  Firmware can develop glitches.

If that doesn’t help, you might try calling SanDisk Customer Service to see what it recommends.  And do note that the player has a 1-year warranty in the U.S. (2 years in the EU)–if your player is less than a year old, SanDisk should replace it (be sure to ask). 

Thanks, Mikerman!  

Unfortunately, I bought the player over a year ago so warranty is no longer valid.  

I definitely will try reapplying the latest firmware to see if it will make a difference.  

You might also try a reset by pressing and holding the power button for 20-30 secs. Release it and then turn it on normally and see how it behaves.

By your description of the “critically low” message you get when plugging it into your computer, that tells me you are using MTP mode on the player (or Auto Defect which defaults to MTP). MTP mode can be quite quirky; better to use MSC mode unless you need MTP for ‘protected’ content or DRM files like Rhapsody or some audio books from your library or Audible. The “crirically low” message is a bug in Windows 7 (when using MTP mode)that Microsoft deemed not important enough to fix.

Yesterday, I left the player plugged to the wall charger for a bit, nothing happened.  But when I plugged it iback nto the computer, to my surprise, it showed “connected” and it actually began to charge.  I managed to charged it for a few hours and the battery was up to 98% again.  I unplugged the player then turned it off, thinking I could use it later in the evening.  By the time I needed my sleep music the battery was down to 68%.  I used it anyway and the player stopped player before I fell asleep!  I was too tired to check but this morning I plugged it into the computer and of course it was cristically low again.  I don’t know what happened…  seemed like the battery got drained while the player was turned off.  

I charged it again this afternoon, to 98%,  and I made sure the player was turned off this time.  Two hours later, it was down to 65%. I have just changed it to MSC mode and now charging it again.  I can only hope it will hold the charge this time.  

If that doesn’t work any better, it sounds like the charging system (or battery) is wonky. Is this still under warranty so you can get a free replacement from SanDisk?

Have you tried using a different cable? When the battery power gets too low, that may prevent the player from connecting. Charging it with an AC usb charger would then allow it to connect. 

One other thought. Is your notebook charging when you connect the player? Some notebooks go into low power mode when they are not connected to AC power. In this low power mode, power to the USB ports is decreased, and may not be enough to properly charge the player. The connect speed may also be reduced to usb1. So for those using a notebook, I suggest first plugging in the notebook to charge before connecting the player.

I did try different cables, AC charging too.  But when it was problematic it was problematic no matter what I did.  I only unplug my laptop when I must go to the kitchen for 1/2 hour and I don’t charge anything with it when it’s not plugged in.  

The good news is… Tapeworm’s solution worked.  I changed the mode from MTP to MSC.  The interface looks very different now but it works!  The battery is charging and holding the charge!  :smileyvery-happy: