Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Computer shuts down when other electrical systems are connected?

Last response: in Components
Share
January 29, 2011 3:24:16 PM

Hi Tom's Community!

A little more than 6 month ago, you helped me build a great computer!
But recently I've had a couple of random shutdowns. The shutdowns where instant, and had no lag to them, felt like someone pulled the plug.
I figured it was hardware related but was unable to really locate the issue.

That was until I plugged in a vacuum cleaner today. My PC went down.
I booted it back up, restarted the vacuum cleaner, and had the same crash.

I have been running several benchmarks, and the heat within my system is what I would expect from the 470 GTX i have in there.

To me this sounds like a PSU problem, is there anyway to verify this, and what should I do?

Specs:
Core i7 - 930
470 GTX
4 GB DDR3 RAM
Gigabyte GA-X58-USB3
Corsair HX850W (from EU)
2 Samsung Spinpoint harddrives
Antec 902 case.

If I missed anything, please ask, I will monitor the tread as much as possible.
Thanks everyone!
a c 272 ) Power supply
January 29, 2011 4:13:59 PM

How is the wiring in your residence and how old is the vacuum? It sounds more like turning the vacuum on is either causing the voltage to go out of the acceptable range, or its causing so much noise in the lines that the PSU is shutting down to shield itself. Have you tried it with the vacuum on a different circuit to see if it still happens? If you have a GFCI in the bathroom or the kitchen i would try it in one of those to see if the motor in the vacuum is causing electrical issues.
January 29, 2011 8:50:21 PM

I don't know much about the wiring in my resience, and vacuum cleaner is quite old, old enough that I don't except it to live up to any standards.
If I try the vacuum cleaner in a AC plug further away, my PC don't shut down.

I haven't been able to replicate the issue with anything else than the vacuum cleaner. I haven't been able to get anything near the power levels of the vacuum cleaner close enough either however.

When the desktop shuts down, it is ONLY the desktop. I have the desktop connected with a power strip, and everything else in that power strip stays on!

I also have other shut downs. It happens randomly about once a day, more if I'm gaming, but it is still very unpredictable, and it could just be random (again, no heat issues, and I have more then enough power to run everything). The vacuum cleaner is the only way I'm able to consistently replicate the issue, but the issue comes up randomly as well.


Another question: Is this damaging to my parts? I have tried taking contact to Corsair for more information, but in the mean time, should I keep my desktop off? Or can I use it as long as I just save my documents frequently enough?
Related resources
a b ) Power supply
January 29, 2011 8:59:37 PM

When an electrical motor starts up it draw quite a it of current, about 6x its operating current. Thisplaces a heavy load on the circuit and will drop the voltage level of the line. You may remember seeing the lights dima second when the refridgerator compressor starts up.

Your PSU is probably not able to handle the lowered voltage and turning off. Buy a UPS or have an electrician run you a dedicated power line to your pc.
January 29, 2011 9:03:52 PM

Shouldn't my PSU be able to handle such a spike? This is a new issue, its been working fine for more than 6 month.

If corsair don't come up with anything useful, I will definitely look into the UPS solution thanks a lot.

Once again, if anyone could tell me: Is this damaging to the other parrts? My computer is still useable, and I would like to keep using it until I know more, but I will not do it if I risk burning transistors in my CPU, tearing on my HDD or anything of that nature?
a c 79 ) Power supply
January 29, 2011 9:32:03 PM

If you had 6 months of it working well, I think you may have an issue somewhere.

First off, can you move the computer to another plug(preferably another circuit) along with the vacuum in question.

This will help to eliminate the plug it self. Many devices use a power brick(wall wart) and those can tolerate quite a drop in voltage without messing up. They are not the best way to test(other things on the power strip may have a good tolerances).

If it still crashes, you may want to try another power supply, most can cope with the drop in voltage even down to 100(i guess you are on the 110/120 volt system) volts or lower.

I mostly recommend this(try another power supply) as you say the system does this at random even without the vacuum.

If you do not crash on another plug, chances are you have a loose wire. An electrician or person with a screw driver can check the connections with the POWER OFF AT THE BREAKER OR FUSEBOX.

Chances are this is not hurting the system(i can not say for sure, if the psu is defective, who knows what else is wrong) as the power supply is just folding over when it can no longer deliver the power needed.

hunter315, I doubt a GFCI(ground fault circuit interrupter) will help as it looks for power heading back on ground instead of neutral.
a c 135 ) Power supply
January 29, 2011 11:35:24 PM

Sounds like a voltage drop issue. Electric motors have what's called "in rush current" which can be up to 10 times what normal current is.... my guess is the voltage is dropping to a point outside the limits of your PSU.

Would suggest putting your PC ona different circuit than your Vacuum. Another option is to use on of these:

http://www.tomshardware.com/news/ocz-ups-battery-backup...
January 30, 2011 9:16:51 AM

I tried the system and the vacuum cleaner on another circuit and got the same result. I must admit, the vacuum seems really power hungry, and I also noticed a brief dip in the lightning in the room I did the test.

It is pretty clear I will use the vacuum in a AC plug far away from my desktop in the future, and probably try to get a new vacuum pretty soon.

Until then, I still have the random shut downs. I feel pretty confident it is something with the PSU, as I haven't been able to find any other issues within my system.

I will try to get a replacement or repair from corsair as soon as possible.

In the mean time, can anyone chime in on what Nukemaster said?
Am I hurting the rest of my system?
January 30, 2011 11:17:22 AM

Well if you connect them to a surge protector, it may have a limit (like mine has and its 2000w) and it would not be able to keep your PC and vacuum running and couse your PC to shut down.
January 30, 2011 11:33:43 AM

Quote:
^ANSWER THOSE QUESTIONS PLEASE

Dude calm the f*ck down, im giving my opinion, i answered to the thread and he made the post while i was writing mine ;)  If your system shuts down because of power failure, yes, power failure could cause system damage.
January 30, 2011 11:45:42 AM

Quote:
Eh? Sorry for the caps didnt mean it that way lol

Ok no problem ;) 
January 30, 2011 11:54:18 AM

Quote:
Its almost 16h00 on a sunday got 3 kids climbing over everything here lol

Well its 15:53 here, guess we are in the same timezone (and we should stop with the spam) lolz
!