Lightning Strike

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moksha
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Lightning Strike

#1 Postby moksha » Fri May 06, 2011 11:45 pm

We had a storm last week and there was a nearby lightning strike, despite 'surge protection' it appears there are problems. I am running an Asus P5K PRO . I replaced the power supply as a precaution, the desktop boots and runs perfectly for about 2-5 minutes then just closes, no shutdown cycle, first the screen goes blank then, after a few seconds the cpu fan shuts down then the main fan shuts down and then the main fan restarts and stops.Turning the power off and on again is the only way to reboot. I suspect things are not repairable but I dont know until I ask, I think the cpu may be shutting down as the result of an erroneous signal, any thoughts are welcome.

A UPS is now on the buy list

The wireless router also got fried it was also 'surge protected'.
The Meile washing machine was also fried but an electrically minded friend bypassed the blown surge protector that is internally fitted and suggested the best surge protection is to unplug it at the wall when not in use, I am converted and completely agree with him

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Re: Lightning Strike

#2 Postby uncle mark » Fri May 06, 2011 11:56 pm

moksha wrote:We had a storm last week and there was a nearby lightning strike, despite 'surge protection' it appears there are problems. I am running an Asus P5K PRO . I replaced the power supply as a precaution, the desktop boots and runs perfectly for about 2-5 minutes then just closes, no shutdown cycle, first the screen goes blank then, after a few seconds the cpu fan shuts down then the main fan shuts down and then the main fan restarts and stops.Turning the power off and on again is the only way to reboot. I suspect things are not repairable but I dont know until I ask, I think the cpu may be shutting down as the result of an erroneous signal, any thoughts are welcome.


This is with a new and/or known good PSU, replacing the one that was in the machine during the strike?

I just want to confirm, because the symptoms point to a bad PSU. If that's not the case, I'd be inclined to condemn the motherboard.

Bummer.
Desktop: Custom build Asus/AMD/nVidia -- MX-15 KDE, MEPIS 11
Laptop: Acer Aspire 5250 -- MX-15

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Re: Lightning Strike

#3 Postby moksha » Sat May 07, 2011 12:07 am

A new 620 watt PSU replacing the old 500 watt unit, I agreed with those symptoms initially too which governed my course of action in the new purchase, however you have given me food for thought it is possible the new PSU is dodgy, I will run a test on the power outputs on it.

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Re: Lightning Strike

#4 Postby dsptech » Sat May 07, 2011 1:34 am

Your surge protector could be bad as well.
Try plugging directly to your wall outlet.

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Re: Lightning Strike

#5 Postby qtech » Sat May 07, 2011 1:38 am

Aside from issues with the new PSU, you might try resetting the BIOS as well.
Don't just use the jumper, go ahead and remove the battery. Leave it out for ten minutes or so. Reinsert and confirm the new BIOS settings. Sometimes it just requires a little coaxing.

From experience I can tell you that if a machine was powered off when the surge occurred the motherboard usually survives. With the one notable exception of having a phone line plugged into the modem.

In fact, I am typing this from a machine that was in a household that was zapped by a bad transformer. Every plugged-in electronic item in the house was destroyed. The PSU from the computer was charred completely black. Insurance refused to waste time paying for diagnostics.

Popped in a new PSU and it has run perfectly for 6 months.

<Shrug> Who am I to turn down a new, free computer?

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Re: Lightning Strike

#6 Postby qtech » Sat May 07, 2011 1:40 am

dsptech wrote:Your surge protector could be bad as well.
Try plugging directly to your wall outlet.

Good point. And better yet, confirm the voltage coming from the wall socket.

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Re: Lightning Strike

#7 Postby m_pav » Sat May 07, 2011 4:10 am

UPS's are fantastic. Three days ago, my wife reported that her UPS started clicking quite frequently, but it didn't actually cut in and take over. Two days ago, she reported the clicking was so bad, she couldn't take it any more and shut everything off, including the UPS. When I got home from work, everything was back on, and sure enough, the UPS was clicking very randomly and the voltage display was randomly cycling through 222-240v. Yesterday morning, I got up at 5am and it was clicking more than ever, and with each click, I saw a very slight momentary dim in the lighting with the voltage ranging between 224 and 261v and once, the entire power failed for 3 seconds, at which time, the UPS was safeguarding our hardware, including the modem whilst I was in the midst of a large download.

We called the power company at 9am, they came out to check it out around 10am and found nothing wrong in our household, so at 10:30, they thought they'd go and check out the local transformer, which is less than 200 metres from our house. While the tech was at the transformer, his phone went and the power company said others down the road had just reported issues, so he knew he was on the right track, though to be fair, by now, homes and businesses within 3 KM of us were experiencing significant power interruptions. After the tech opened up the transformer box, he saw a mess of molten metal where 2 phases had been arcing out and melting everything in their path.

Now imagine how useful the UPS has been to us, being the first household in the street, we were the closest user to the source of the problem. Had we not had the UPS, I'm certain my wifes computer would have suffered some from of catastrophic failure, as it's not necessarily one big strike that takes down a system, multiple little strikes can do just as much damage, with the exception of having no visible damage.

We actually have a hyper sensitive surge protector in line first, then the UPS, so the surge protector gives one additional layer of protection, plus I have a larger than required UPS and I'd encourage others to do the same.

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Re: Lightning Strike

#8 Postby lucky9 » Sat May 07, 2011 9:29 am

Plus one for using a UPS for computers. Not a bad idea for a big TV either. Even an inexpensive model (from a good manufacturer) is a great addition.
I also use a surge suppressor on my Netbook. Might save a battery someday.

I should mention that a surge suppressor that has had a surge that would hurt equipment is no longer safe to use.
Yes, even I am dishonest. Not in many ways, but in some. Forty-one, I think it is.
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Re: Lightning Strike

#9 Postby moksha » Sat May 07, 2011 11:14 pm

dsptech wrote:Your surge protector could be bad as well.
Try plugging directly to your wall outlet.

The surge protectors have been binned

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Re: Lightning Strike

#10 Postby moksha » Sat May 07, 2011 11:17 pm

qtech wrote:Aside from issues with the new PSU, you might try resetting the BIOS as well.
Don't just use the jumper, go ahead and remove the battery. Leave it out for ten minutes or so. Reinsert and confirm the new BIOS settings. Sometimes it just requires a little coaxing.

From experience I can tell you that if a machine was powered off when the surge occurred the motherboard usually survives. With the one notable exception of having a phone line plugged into the modem.

In fact, I am typing this from a machine that was in a household that was zapped by a bad transformer. Every plugged-in electronic item in the house was destroyed. The PSU from the computer was charred completely black. Insurance refused to waste time paying for diagnostics.

Popped in a new PSU and it has run perfectly for 6 months.

<Shrug> Who am I to turn down a new, free computer?

great advice, unfortunately computer > netgear wifi router > cable modem all via ethernet which if I have read you correctly does not sound good


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