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Power supply question

Posted on 2002-04-28
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Last Modified: 2010-04-26
If my power supply have a lot sound and sound sparks coming from the fan. I have switch it off straight away. Will it normally damage the motherboad. What causes the power supply to have such power.
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Question by:da511
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jhance earned 50 total points
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Please UNPLUG this thing from AC POWER IMMEDIATELY and DO NOT PLUG IT BACK IN AGAIN!!!!

From the description you've given this unit has suffered a serious failure.  If sparks are flying there is a significant SHOCK or FIRE hazard.

Please seek qualified help!!
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by:pjknibbs
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As for whether it's damaged the motherboard, the only way to find out is replace the power supply and see if it still works, unfortunately. (Unless there are obvious signs of failure such as burnt-out power regulators on the motherboard itself, of course). Hopefully, when the power supply blew it simply stopped supplying any current to the motherboard and thus it'll be OK, but this isn't guaranteed by any means.
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by:NickLo
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Repair work on computer power supplies must be left to the experts.  Often when a fault occurs, there is a large propability for the low voltage components such as electrolytic capacitors to be supplied at mains voltage and they explode.  Since non of the capacitors exploded and sparks come out of the cooling fan then the problem may not be as serious.  Assuming it is not the cooling fan itself, the fault is most likely to be a bad solder joint and such faults can easily be located because the point where the sparks came from will be black.  First remove the fan and ceck for black soot or smell it for burns or better still test it using the rated voltage which you can find on the nameplate of the fan.  If possible inspect the components and especially the soldered joints for any burned marks.  If the fault is not visible then replace the power supply.  It will be cheaper to replace the power supply.  It is most unlikely that the motherboard has been damaged.
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by:da511
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I have replaced the power supply and luckily my motherboard is still working :) Thanks all experts who respond to this question. Is there any way to prevent this in future. I may not be lucky the next time
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by:da511
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I have replaced the power supply and luckily my motherboard is still working :) Thanks all experts who respond to this question. Is there any way to prevent this in future. I may not be lucky the next time
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by:jhance
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Not really.  You just never know when something like this might fail.  Just don't ignore any odd smells from the unit or cracks and pops from it.
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by:pjknibbs
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And if the power supply fan starts making a weird noise, or stops spinning altogether, replace the unit IMMEDIATELY.
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by:NickLo
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Your problem has been solved.  Give the points to someone.
It is possible for a fault to develop on the motherboard and damage the power supply.  As jhance said, you never know when a fault may occur.
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by:Moondancer
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