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2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

Community Veteran
Posts: 14,014
Thanks: 539
Fixes: 9
Registered: 01-08-2007

2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

Hi all
My Girlfriend lent her PC to her brother ages ago so that he could do his driving theory CD.
Unknown to us, he and his pals, decided to use it for all sorts - downloading MP3s, porn, etc etc etc etc. Eventually the machine gave up the ghost. I went down to fix it and found that they had somehow toasted everything. The PSU, the motherboard, the processor and even the kettle lead and fuse! Somehow the memory and hard drives survived...
Anyway, that machine was so knackered and needed so many parts I could do nothing with it due to the costs involved. It now sits under my desk awaiting a rebuild at some time in the future.
The young lad being down on his luck was desperate to do his theory for his driving so... i did something a bit silly and lent him my 2nd most powerful PC which I was using for running VMs on and accessing via RD. I was also using it as a sandbox for testing things on too.
I swapped out my HDDs from the machine for others and delivered it to him many weeks ago.
Today I get home from work and my GF is on the phone to him. Apparently the 400/450W PSU has blown. I find this very hard to beleive as I've had the machine over 2 years and its been faultless. I've not seen it yet but I'm starting to think he's fried the entire machine just like the last one as he said it was the PSU on the last one too.
On the 1st machine he had tried to fit a DVD drive and kinda bodged it. This time he claims he has done nothing to it. He apparently said the machine didn't work properly and had very little memory (yeah look a gift horse in the mouth...).
My question is this... Is there anything you guys can think of that could cause the same syptoms to 2 PCs in this manner?
I'm rather worried he's just fried my Asus motherboard and AMD 1.4GHz processor. Ok I know thats old these days but for my requirements it is extremely powerful yet costly to rebuild.. as I have little spare cash.
To let off a bit of steam here... I felt insulted that he suggested the machine wasn't up to his desired specification and now he seems to of fried it like the previous one lent to him! I certainly won't be lending him my only other spare machine.
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
25 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
Thanks: 12
Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

Something wrong with the mains in his place?
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,014
Thanks: 539
Fixes: 9
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

My GF suggested this but I can't think of anything that go go wrong twice!
Sure he has a few sockets with dodgy plastic covers and a light switch with a hole.... Yeah that does sound a bit unpromising doesn't it lol. Think I'll be bringing that box out of there....
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,850
Registered: 11-08-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

lesson i'd learn from this is to stop lending to that fool.  grab the machine back and run some tests on it.  he could have tried overclocking it.  that done badly can fry the innards.
TartanTerminato
Dabbler
Posts: 19
Registered: 17-04-2008

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

well ican very well understand how you feel insulted, i mean youwere kind enough to lend it to him. Also i doubt its overclocking, becuase that shouldnt break the psu, only the processor and RAM. Any cnance of a virus, or is the hardware knackered? You know downloading porn is fairly risky. Besides i can be a bit clumsy and bodgy, with my pc and its never let me down, except from when i forgot to plug my processor back into the slot, o it most have taken some doing to blow all those components lol.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,571
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Registered: 13-04-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

To blow a PSu you can overheat it by jamming the fan with muck or something, blocking the fan, putting it next to a heat source so the fan is ineffective. Other than that a damp room could do it. Its rare for PSu to go but I know a lady who had 2 go in a matter of months and they were top of the range £80 PSu both on the same pc and shes an old lady so she wasnt doing anything bad
alanb
Grafter
Posts: 459
Registered: 24-05-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

Sounds like he might have been swapping components while the machines are powered up.  Shocked
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,014
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Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

Hi guys..
Well I've still not seen the machine yet but I'll be picking it up today from the GFs bro. I'm suspicious though after some comments you good people have left. Overclocking does sound like something they'd be curious to try behind my back. I specifically told them they were not to touch the machine inside but these kids don't tend to listen. Their attitude is just "Yeah alright trust me it'll be ok..... right he's gone lets try.....". I wouldn't be surprised if I find all the same symptoms as the 1st machine which is sitting under my desk.
One thing is for sure though, he ain't getting another machine lent to him. I can't afford to repair my GFs machine yet alone this one if he's knackered it. I'm sure they must of been tinkering with it though as 2 PSUs being killed by the same people cannot be a coincidence. Like I said, both those machines were running very reliably before they went to him.
At least I have a spare motherboard floating around I can use. When the GFs system came back I tried my spare processor in the mobo.... mobo fried it  Embarrassed I'll have to hope I can lay my hands on a cheap AMD XP processor for the spare board along with PSU etc.
/rant
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Plusnet Alumni (retired) orbrey
Plusnet Alumni (retired)
Posts: 10,540
Registered: 18-07-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

if it's a socket A I've got a 2500 athlon XP you can have if you like... just let me know, I'll bung it in the post. It's not doing anything and not likely to.
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,014
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Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

Well, I've got the box back..
Yes they've been inside it as the screws on the back of the case were loose. They were right though, it was only the PSU that was dead.
While checking the kettle leads, I pulled the plug out of the socket and the thing fell apart in my fingers with one finger slipping right in and giving me a shock of 230V AC. Luckily I wasn't touching anything conductive with any other part of my body so I live to tell the tale!
Anyway, the little gits have toasted my 400W power supply Sad but at least the processor, mobo, memory, HDD and opticals are ok!!! I've got an old 300W PSU (ironically which came from them when they blew the 1st computer lent to them) which has powered up the unit but I'm just having doubts about whether it is powerful enough.
I'm not gonna let this go lightly though. Fair enough if they wanna check the fuse fine by me. To loose the screw and do the plug up with sellotape and not tell me is lethal. Well at least I live to tell the tale... even if I am absolutely steaming... Angry
@Orbrey, thanks for the offer mate, looks like this processor lives to tell the tale like me though!
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,735
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Registered: 02-02-2008

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

Just buy a 500W PSU on eBay - dirt cheap (I've had a couple)  Grin
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,729
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

And sad to say, but never lead anyone a PC again.
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,014
Thanks: 539
Fixes: 9
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

Yeah I can honestly say I don't think I will be lending it out again. I'm not prepared to have people destroying my equipment and then trying to destroy me!
Now I've got to get another PSU and another kettle lead. Well ok I might have a spare lead floating around BUT even so, the little gits have just cost me one!
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!
laura
Grafter
Posts: 60
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

why shouldn't your gf's brother pay?  Send him an invoice, it might wake him up! (ok I accept he is young but he should learn that you just don't destroy other people's property).
Community Veteran
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: 2 PCs, 2 blown PSUs, same person borrowed them... Ideas?

I agree with Laura, and when you make it up, use some legal sounding jargon at the bottom regarding payment within 14 days, risking court action, or some other legal pressure..... He/they may not take much notice of it, but on the other hand, it might just remind them what they have done, and take a little more care of other "loans".
Edit.... and put it in the post..... don`t give it to the gf to deliver..... puts her in a difficult position.... try to keep it strictly between them and you