Static Electricity Fried my new computer?

By Shroud77
Mar 18, 2005
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  1. I admittedly don't know much about hardware... so he goes nothing.

    A friend of mine built a new PC for me. Brought it home last night and everything worked fine.

    Today I was installing some software and went to eject a CD when I touched one of the face plates on an empty bay. The guy who builted it said the face plates were brushed aluminum.

    When I touched the face plate, I heard and felt a crack of static and the computer turned off. When I turned the power back on, only the fans and the purdy lights on the outside of the case kicked on. The hard drive did nothing, and the power light on the front of the computer did not light up. I'll have to look when I get home again, but I believe there was a green light lit up on the motherboard.

    It seems to me that a small bit of SE wouldn't be enough to fry something...or if it is, that the computer would be built in a way to prevent something as common as SE to have an effect when it hits the case... am I wrong? What did I kill here? Is there anything I can do to help diagnose the issue?

    Thanks all...
  2. dgower2

    dgower2 TechSpot Maniac Posts: 340

    SE is literally hundreds of thousands of volts!!!

    I once went to turn the power off on my computer and static electricity shut it down before I even pushed the button. I tried to turn it on afterwards and it took a couple tries, but it eventually turned back on. You need to make sure your system is properly grounded.
  3. dgower2

    dgower2 TechSpot Maniac Posts: 340

  4. tbrunt3

    tbrunt3 Newcomer, in training Posts: 495

    I would take it back there seems to be a problem with power supply or motherboard possible a compicator that small amout of static really would not do anything unless you touched the motheboard.What is really strange here is when you touched the cd you basically had a spark. Do you have a 3 prong plug and are pluging it in with all three prongs and not one of those adapters.This sounds like a ground issue as was said but the two places to start are motherboard powersupply...

    Let us know
  5. Shroud77

    Shroud77 Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Thanks... that's an interesting article and has me thinking I should confirm that I am indeed grounded. My question would be, when your computer shut itself down, did it only happen the one time or did it occur every so often.

    I didn't have the case open... the contact was with the face plate of a bay. I do have the power cord plugged into an appropriate surge protector with a grounded plug into the wall. Again, I'll have to check the ground to see if it's appropriate.
  6. dgower2

    dgower2 TechSpot Maniac Posts: 340

    My computer shutting down from ESD only occurred 1 time. I immediately hit the power button to turn it back on and nothing. I almost pooped my pants. I kept pushing the button, and it turned on after maybe 3-5 tries. Has never happened since then. To test your ground, get a volt meter and make sure the ground in the socket is at 0 volts.
  7. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 12,246   +213

    Its likely fine now. My PSU shut off once when I did the exact same thing as you. Computer wouldn't boot for a few minutes. It booted a few minutes later with no ill effects.
  8. Shroud77

    Shroud77 Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    All is well...

    Prognosticators here.... it's fine now. My concerns have been tamed :)

    Thanks for your help all!
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