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Old 09-20-2011, 05:41 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Lightning Damage to PC


About a week ago we had a lightning storm, it took out our main telephone test socket and our router. After getting BT to fix the phone line I found I couldn't find a network through my ethernet port. A couple of days later my pc dies altogether.

I get no sounds at all from my pc, the motherboard LED is on but when i hit the case reset button I get absolutely nothing. No HDD led on the front of the case, no fan sounds, no beeps, nothing.

At the moment i'm thinking it makes the most sense if the its the motherboard as the current must have travelled up the ethernet cable. I've tried a different PSU, exactly the same problem. I've tried each stick of RAM individually. I've taken out my GPU/soundcard etc. Ive even hooked up another case to test the reset button.

Is there anything obvious i've missed and should try before assuming its the motherboard? anyone got a spare p5b hanging around?

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Old 09-20-2011, 09:04 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Join Date: Sep 2011
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Default Re: Lightning Damage to PC

Replace the motherboard and the NIC. I wouldn't trust the old PSU either as if it was damaged then it could fry your new motherboard.

Also, I highly recommend using a quality surge protector not only for the computer power, but also the ethernet cords.

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Old 09-21-2011, 09:59 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Location: Nebraska, USA
Posts: 239
Default Re: Lightning Damage to PC

My first thought (hope!) was the PSU, but you already tried another with no luck. With all you did, it does sound like the motherboard is gone.

Surge and spike protectors are little more than fancy and expensive extension cords that do NOTHING for abnormal low voltage events, and merely chop off the tops (clamp) of the sinewaves for abnormal high voltage events - providing not-so-pretty (dirty) power for your PSU and motherboard regulator circuits to clean up. For these reasons, I recommend ALL computers be on a "good" UPS with AVR - automatic voltage regulation. I emphasize "good" UPS because like power supplies, there are cheap ones you should make every effort to avoid.

Note that power during a power outage is only the icing on the cake. It is the AVR of a "good" UPS that saves your hardware. I recommend all big screen TVs and home theater audio equipment be on a good UPS with AVR too. The downside is UPS batteries need to be replaced about every 3 years.

FTR, I have a 1500VA UPS with AVR that protects my fairly power hungry computer all my network gear (router, modem, switch) and two 22" widescreen LCD monitors. And it provides over 30 minutes of battery power in the event the grid goes down. If I shut down my computer and turn off my monitors, it will hold my network up (and all my IP assignments) for over 12 hours. Nice!
Bill (AFE7Ret)
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