[SOLVED] Liquid Damage

M3rKn

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Anyone ever successfully repair a liquid damaged PC?

My niece discovered a way to pour tea into her PC case. Not normal tea, Starbucks tea with 1000 calories of sugar. The stuff is everywhere, caked on real good too. It's in the PCIE lanes, RAM slots. I haven't pulled the CPU out of the socket yet but its around the cooler. The only components that didn't get any tea on or in them were the PSU and SSD. I didn't think it was that bad at first, but when I pulled the GPU the stuff was everywhere. I cleaned it but stains remain. I was gonna test it in my rig, but it was so bad I am afraid it will fry my own system.

System Specs

Asrock 970m pro3
FX-6300
GT 710
Adata 8GB

I built this two years ago for her, and as you can understand I used this level of components with good reason. I have never fixed a pc with water damage. I assumed the mobo took the brunt of the damage and would definitely need to be replaced. Just wondering if it would even be worth it.
 

Gam3r01

Titan
Moderator
Was the system powered at the time?
Was it promptly unplugged after the incident or did it sit?

If there was no immediate short to a specific component a thorough cleaning could potentially revive most of the components. If the system was running its a different story.
The primary places I would be concerned are the motherboard shorting either during use or due to the CMOS battery present on board, and small contacts like CPU socket.

As for cleaning, a high percentage alcohol like isopropyl is a good option, but you are going to be going through alot of it. Youll need to wet any affected areas, dislodge the material (soft brush for example) and then rinse fully with more alcohol. A simple wipe with a damp rag wont do the trick.
After that, let it air out for at least a day before attempting anything.
I also personally would start with as few components connected as you can on the first boot.
 
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Apr 4, 2021
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Gahhhh tricky ... you never know what's going to happen when you switch on after that sort of thing. Might blow up everything.

Might be able to save the GPU, only thing to clean it with is alcohol, most folks use isopropyl alcohol to clean pcb's with, although the price of it went up significantly because of covid-19. In Australia here we have a product called Methylated Spirits which is cheap. Ours is 97% alcohol, but I think the percentage can vary depending on your supplier.

GT-710 cards are still available and pretty cheap. I don't think you'll be able to find new socket AM3 motherboards, but there are probably used ones about on auction sites etc.

The CPU and SSD could be saved if you get a second-hand motherboard. Not sure of the RAM. Maybe sell the GT 710, and Asrock 970m pro 3 for parts only, see if you can get a few bucks for them.

Not saying you should get these ones, just giving example:
Just did a quick search on ebay, found one actually in Australia: ASRock 970 pro3 Pro3 AM3+ Motherboard (remember that's in Aust. Dollars ... so might only be 75c in US dollars :geek:)
Plenty of secondhand GT 710 on ebay too: GIGABYTE GT710 2GB GDDR3 PCI-E
Up to you whether you want to try save the RAM, only you know how bad it is.


{GoofyOne's 2c worth}
 
Last edited:
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M3rKn

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Was the system powered at the time?
Was it promptly unplugged after the incident or did it sit?
Good question. Yes it was powered on. Unfortunately the system was left running while she frantically called me (she is 11 years old). I did explain to never place drinks near it and any liquid would KILL IT, but I should have probably explained what to do if such a thing ever happened. I had her unplug everything and allow it to dry for several days. Once I was able to pick it up I assessed the spillage (by this time it was dry). I hooked it up to a surge protector and connected a monitor. The system powered on, all the fans spin, and the CPU cooler fan spins as well, but I didn't get any signal to the monitor. Tried HDMI and VGA cables. I didn't need more than a few seconds to determine it wouldn't post, bios screen wouldn't load. I could safely assume that some portion of the motherboard is still functional. So I have left it sit for a few weeks and just this last Saturday I pulled out the GPU and started to see how how much tea really had gotten in there. I will do as you suggest and give it a good cleaning with isopropyl alcohol. This gives me some hope that some of the components are salvageable.
 

M3rKn

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Gam3r01

Titan
Moderator
There are lots of options. I just browsed for a little bit and found this gem. https://www.ebay.com/itm/265156934160?ssPageName=STRK:MEBIDX:IT&fromMakeTrack=true
I am going to watch this and see how much it winds up going for.
I would expect the price on that to jump greatly by the time its done.
I just sold an 8350, ASUS Sabertooth 990FX, and 8GB of RAM for 125, 125, and 55 bucks respectively.
So basically if you see that kit under 200 bucks as the bidding closes, buy it.
 

M3rKn

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I would expect the price on that to jump greatly by the time its done.
I just sold an 8350, ASUS Sabertooth 990FX, and 8GB of RAM for 125, 125, and 55 bucks respectively.
So basically if you see that kit under 200 bucks as the bidding closes, buy it.
Yeah doesn't look like it is gonna fly under radar
 

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