Question Is a damaged PCI-E slot a problem if not in use?

gurgle166

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Nov 9, 2016
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During overseas shipping, my PC's wireless PCI-E card with two antennae sticking out the back of the PC case was pushed inwards, into the case. The force was applied to the antennae, which in turn pushed the PCI-E card across in the socket (parallel to the longer side) and now some pin sockets on the PCI-E port are broken.

When I tried to start it without knowing the problem, the computer turned on for 1 second and switched off. I've now removed the wireless card and it appears to work fine.

What I want to know is, is it safe to run the PC like this, with a broken but empty PCI-E slot? And just because it works now, is it possible that any problems down the line might be traceable back to this, or is the slot just completely inert? (I won't be inserting anything into it at all, it's definitely 100% unusable)

Thanks!
 
Pay especially close attention to the pins in the short section (on x16 slots, at least) close to the I/O mounting plate. That's the part where 12V and 3V power is brought onto the board and as well SMBus data and control. Those shorting out can cause potential destructive damage to other parts of the motherboard.
 

gurgle166

Commendable
Nov 9, 2016
13
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1,510
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Okay, thanks. I've had a look. There doesn't seem to be any metal bits touching each other that shouldn't be, but there are a few pins sticking out haywire which I nudged with a needle to move them away from each other. Overall though, it's quite hard to tell because everything's so small and inside the crevice of the socket.

Pay especially close attention to the pins in the short section (on x16 slots, at least) close to the I/O mounting plate. That's the part where 12V and 3V power is brought onto the board and as well SMBus data and control. Those shorting out can cause potential destructive damage to other parts of the motherboard.
Thanks. The short section is is only slightly damaged; all the pins are in place and only a some of the black plastic housing has been broken.

I've attached a photo although it's not that easy to see the finer details.



Edit: There's not much more I can do since it's so small and hard to tell, but I think it should be alright - It works for now at least. Thanks! Please do tell me if there's anything in the photo that's not right!
 
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