View Full Version : Deceased power supply.

10-21-2002, 09:53 PM
I have a power supply that has been used a total of about 20 minutes and died last night. Now it is a cheap piece of crap, I knew that when it can with the case for a combined $25 shipping included. The shipping cost more than the case with the power supply in it! It is a 400watt power supply and I had used it to power a new build I did. It seemed to work ok, but last night after I changed some hardware in the build it died (may it rest in peace). I couldn't get anything to work and I noticed that even the power supply fan wasn't turning. I tried another power supply and it worked fine.

This leads to 2 questions:

1. Could I have done something that killed the damn thing??

2. Is there anything I can do with a deceased power supply other than use it in an anti-technology art installation?? In particular, is there anything I can do with it that might resurrect it to power another day??


10-21-2002, 11:08 PM
About the best thing to do, if the fan was quiet is to remove the fan, pull out the alunminum heatsinks (those go in the recycle bin...no, not the one with the Coke cans....the parts you may need some day.....) and the rest takes a short trip to the circular file..........

10-22-2002, 06:13 AM
same thing happened to me in my first PSU... did you hear a buzzing sound when you try to push the on button?

10-22-2002, 10:29 AM
Nope, just got a flash of led on a couple of drives and then silence. This power supply was really a piece of crap. I figured it was not a top of the line model (since it basically cost almost nothing), but I figured it would last a little longer than that. The main reason I am looking at what to do with it is that I hate throwing things away that waste resources even if they were no good to begin with. I will probably take mjc's advice and take what I can out of it and junk the rest. At least I will get a case fan out of it....


10-22-2002, 12:10 PM
There could be a dead fuse or even worse a fusable link......but what caused it to blow...it would always be suspect and I wouldn't trust it. The power supply is probably the most critical componeant and most often the most overlooked one in a computer.

10-22-2002, 09:05 PM
Thanks for the suggestions. Now the next question. How do I get the heat sinks and fan out without getting killed. I am assuming that the fan will actually be pretty easy to take out, but it seem likely that the heat sinks could be more tricky. Any hints??

Also, is there any way to make the wires useful??


Fruss Tray Ted
10-22-2002, 09:44 PM
I found some blown miniature fuses under the paper wrap on the primary side of some battery chargers for portable drills before (Milwaukee 12V). Replaced with in-line fuses and they worked again. I wonder if there may be some in your power supply.

There is nowhere near the amount of energy 'stored' in a pc power supply as compared to a monitor. When you open it up just short out any leads to capacitors of any size with a screwdriver or some other metallic item that has something like rubber grips. The highest voltage we're dealing with is the line voltage itself, 120AC. 12 volts DC and less are hard to feel the tingle of unless you're fingers are wet or you use your tongue. So once the primary side of the transformer is discharged you're good to go.

In a PS it's step 'down' transformers, in a monitor it's step 'up' to like (I forget) 10,000 volts or more.

I've got a Hafler amplifier here with 2 capacitors the size of 12 ounce beer cans. Those'll lift you right off your seat! You shut the amp off and it still works for about a minute... at 60db :eek:

10-23-2002, 05:19 PM
Speaking of power supplies, here's an interesting read:


I use Antec in all my systems. Haven't been let down yet. PP303X 300 watt, True330 and True430.