Question Could 100 year old electrical wiring damage a power supply?

mattnicholas.art

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May 16, 2018
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Hi, I'm about to get a used PSU (Corsair 450W, fully modular) but it's been used for a number of years in a house with almost 100-yr-old wiring (wiring has never been replaced). I'm curious/concerned that having been used in a house with wiring this old, might it have damaged the PSU in any way? The electricity seeem reasonably stable but I noticed that whenever I'm there (my parent's home) the house lights occassionaly flicker⚡which doesn't instill a huge degree of confidence lol
Anyway, just curious as to your thoughts! Thanks
 

kanewolf

Titan
Moderator
Hi, I'm about to get a used PSU (Corsair 450W, fully modular) but it's been used for a number of years in a house with almost 100-yr-old wiring (wiring has never been replaced). I'm curious/concerned that having been used in a house with wiring this old, might it have damaged the PSU in any way? The electricity seeem reasonably stable but I noticed that whenever I'm there (my parent's home) the house lights occassionaly flicker⚡which doesn't instill a huge degree of confidence lol
Anyway, just curious as to your thoughts! Thanks
I would be worried about a fire before I worried about a $50 power supply. The insulation on the wiring was cloth on really old wire. That breaks down over time. That starts fires.
 

JoBalz

Honorable
Sep 1, 2014
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Good point! FWIW re-wiring IS planned ;) Just hope it's sooner rather than later..
Yeah, emphasize to them how important it is to get it changed out ASAP. Like having a time bomb waiting to go off if a circuit gets overloaded.

As for the computer, if it's operating with no problems you're probably all right. But if you want the peace of mind and the computer doesn't use a proprietary power supply (looking at you, HP and Dell!), you can always pick up a good quality PSU (Corsair, Seasonic, EVGA have good reputations) and replace it. Determine the power requirements of the system and get one that is at least the same power output as the one in the system, or up to, say, 20% higher to give yourself some overhead, generally 450W-550W for lower end system, 650W or higher for higher performance systems.

BTW, I live in an area that has frequent power drops and power outages, so I never set up a system without an uninteruptable power supply (UPS), which will switch over to battery power as soon as line power dips even a little bit (I also use one on my TV and DirecTV boxes for the same reason). Worth having the protection, even if you have good power from the utility company.
 
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mattnicholas.art

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May 16, 2018
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Yeah, emphasize to them how important it is to get it changed out ASAP. Like having a time bomb waiting to go off if a circuit gets overloaded.

As for the computer, if it's operating with no problems you're probably all right. But if you want the peace of mind and the computer doesn't use a proprietary power supply (looking at you, HP and Dell!), you can always pick up a good quality PSU (Corsair, Seasonic, EVGA have good reputations) and replace it. Determine the power requirements of the system and get one that is at least the same power output as the one in the system, or up to, say, 20% higher to give yourself some overhead, generally 450W-550W for lower end system, 650W or higher for higher performance systems.

BTW, I live in an area that has frequent power drops and power outages, so I never set up a system without an uninteruptable power supply (UPS), which will switch over to battery power as soon as line power dips even a little bit (I also use one on my TV and DirecTV boxes for the same reason). Worth having the protection, even if you have good power from the utility company.
Yes, I couldn't agree more as the house could be a disaster waiting to manifest. The PC works perfectly with zero problems. It's a Corsair SF450 so it's a fairly decent one that has led a charmed life tbh. It's only going to be used in a system with a discreet/iGPU so it's plenty enough for the intended build (probably overkill). I decided against a Pico-type PSU as it seemed to cause a slight whine/screeching from the Mbd when under load. Not something heard when using a normal ATX job, not to my ears anyway.

Yes, the UPS is a good idea, even if it allowed just 10 mins of runtime after a power cut it's worth having!

Thanks for your help! Matt
 

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