Question Could smoke smell in house damage computer

Sep 23, 2022
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Recently my family and I were renovating our kitchen. At one point we were using a oscillating tool which overheated and started to smell like it was burning. We didnt care about the tool and got the job done but the whole house smelled like smoke for hours despite no smoke ever being visible. I am wondering if the smoke smell could have damaged my computer which was in the house at the time. For there to be a smoke smell there has to be particles in the air and my case has a lot of holes on the sidepanel and what not so I am worried small particles have gone into the computer and damaged it maybe? Am I being paranoid? or should I take my PC to a shop to have it air dusted out.
 
Sep 23, 2022
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Yes, you are being paranoid.

No, it could not harm you computer. In fact, smoke is often used to check various aspects of airflow in some case and fan reviews and testing.
I have a fully built pc not just fans. I was wondering if like smoke particles could have gotten under the cpu heatsink and into the motherboard or something to that effect
 
Sep 23, 2022
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If smells were enough to affect electronics, your average beer drinker would no longer have a TV after letting a couple rippers on Sunday during the big game.
Yeah I guess so. Just strange how the oscillating tool made the whole downstairs and upstairs smell like a burning smell. I'm most likely just being paranoid
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Ambassador
Some smells are just stronger than others. You rip one one day, and nobody knows. You rip one another day and the dog runs away from you. Smoke just happens to be strong, where even the smallest affect stays in the air a very long time, travels on air currents very easily, but once it's in your nose and has been registered by your olfactory sensors, you'll register the smell whether it's actually in the air or not.

Burned plastics, electronics or most other petroleum based organics are the same way. Get gasoline on your hands and several washes with stinky soaps later and your hands still smell of gasoline.
 

Darkbreeze

Retired Mod
I have a fully built pc not just fans. I was wondering if like smoke particles could have gotten under the cpu heatsink and into the motherboard or something to that effect
No. They could not. You are worrying about something that isn't even a thing. I even have systems running in my shop, where there is constantly smoke from grinding and cutting on metal, on wood, soldering smoke, fumes from a propane heater during the winter, various "smells" from the use of dozens of different chemicals, exhaust from vehicles, fumes from heating metal parts with MAP gas to get them loose enough to take apart and just occasionally, an actual fire. Others run computer systems in a variety of industrial applications where everything you can imagine could be in the air and dozens and dozens of computer systems are in use to run various machines, devices, make calculations, control anything you could think of that is used to manufacturer anything, and in none of these situations does anything "in the air" (So long as it's not something seriously caustic or corrosive, in which case if it was you'd be a fool to not have yourself and everything else safeguarded by expensive protective gear and have ample active ventilation in place) have any effect on those (Or my) systems.

Now, if you lit a pile of oil, or tires, or something like that on fire that was making a very specific type of greasy smoke, and your machine was sucking it directly in, it could POSSIBLY, EVENTUALLY, AFTER A LONG TIME, leave some sort of damaging film on things inside that the smoke came in contact with, but that would require an incredibly significant amount of smoke and it would need to be breathing it for a pretty extended period of time, like over days and weeks, to even likely have a measurable effect.

In your scenario, it isn't even possible much less feasible, that anything might happen as a result of there being some electrical stink in the air from overheating a power tool. It doesn't even bear consideration to be honest.
 
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