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Burning PSU?

Last response: in Components
December 25, 2010 12:59:51 PM

Hi guys, i've had a disasterous christmas, i got up and turned my pc on and left it running for a while doing nothing. Then either turned it off or locked it while i went downstairs, i came back to finding a plug ontop of the power cord and the power cord was slightly hanging out (like it'd been tugged out a tiny bit by something) also there was the electronic burning smell coming from the pc. So i pushed the power cord in, then tried to turn it on, but it wouldn't boot at all!

I've read a few posts wondering what caused this, whether it was the loose power cable or what? I'm assuming the burning smell is from the PSU which is now dead? I'm wondering how common it is that other parts of my pc will have died too?

Thanks a lot guys!

More about : burning psu

a b ) Power supply
December 25, 2010 2:56:58 PM

if it is a good quality psu it is less likely to damage other components. what psu do you have?
December 25, 2010 4:46:20 PM

It was an antec 550W NEOHD one, also do you know if the loose cable would have caused this or would it have just died for other reasons?

Thanks a lot for replying :) 
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a b ) Power supply
December 25, 2010 9:00:28 PM

thats a pretty good psu, so your other stuff should be fine.

i cant see how a loose cable could cause a failure. i guess its possbiel for the bad connection to have created extra heat and resistance or even instabiltiy of the input but the psu should be able to handle that - i think the psu just reached its time to go to psu heaven and the loose cable just happened to be occurring at the same time. of course, if you want to fix it, i have a link in my signature for that :) 
December 25, 2010 9:18:00 PM

Hey man, that's the best news i've had all day! Is it 100% safe to put my friends power supply straight into my pc, he's got an expensive one and i really wouldn't want to risk it breaking on me... I thought they were quite hardy things, plus there's no chance of shorting it, but is there any chance my pc could mess his up at all?

Thanks again man, i'll give your forums a read, although i'm getting the feeling that i will be out of my depth haha! Big help though, thanks a load!
December 25, 2010 9:18:27 PM

Thumbs up too!
a b ) Power supply
December 25, 2010 10:31:11 PM

as long as you put it in right, theres no risk of you damaging his psu. especially if its an expensive one, because they have short circuit protection and stuff like that.
a b ) Power supply
December 25, 2010 10:31:45 PM


lol. did you intend that on purpose? :p  jk
December 26, 2010 10:14:03 AM

Yeah i thought so, i've got everything crossed that it's just my psu... Might actually cry if my mobo/cpu is damaged hahaha! He's not going to come over till later, tension is getting to me!

Hahaha yeah i did actually, needed a name for the forums, usually put vex so thought i'd put that up for a laugh :D 

Anyways, thanks again mate, it's nice to know there's people like you around! Everybody thumbs up for him and check out his sig!
December 26, 2010 10:15:28 AM

I'll keep you posted on what happens too! :) 
December 26, 2010 10:26:47 AM

You could also test your psu out of / or unplugged from your pc by shorting across a couple of the pins on the main ATX power supply connector.

If it turns on and the fans spin up then you know that its not dead. However the burning smell would lead me to be very cautions about using it again.

a b ) Power supply
December 27, 2010 3:44:05 AM

that test is not 100% accurate. The psu fan can spin but voltage rails can be out of spec or other rails may not be working at all.
December 27, 2010 9:11:58 AM


It was just for a quick and dirty check. The appliance of science or even still a voltmeter check of all the outputs would be a better option.

Better to just run a mile from that PSU!

a c 144 ) Power supply
December 27, 2010 2:29:46 PM

iam2thecrowe said:
that test is not 100% accurate. The psu fan can spin but voltage rails can be out of spec or other rails may not be working at all.

Very true. I recently worked on a friends computer. I unplugged the power cables and plugged them into my PSU tester - all voltages present and in tolerance and the PowerGood signal came up within specs. But the PSU could not support the load of the computer.

The paperclip trick, PSU tester, or DMM can tell you if an unloaded PSU is bad, but they cannot tell you if it is good.