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Anyone washed their video cards?

By ZXT ยท 16 replies
Jan 9, 2008
  1. Well I just did to an my old FX5200 thats acting up lately and finally died (I thought) on me. I was thinking I got nothing to lose so what the heck try to wash it with dish washing liquid. I submerged it for more than an hour and blow dry it before putting it back...lo and behold...it came back to life!

    Been 2 weeks or so since then and its still working :)
  2. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Next time use electronic spray (although a lot more expensive) that will also remove all dirt and grime

    Amazing story - for last resort action though - so I'm going to try it on faulty video cards that nothing has ever fixed before
  3. ZXT

    ZXT TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 21

    Actually I've use electonic spray before for my mobo but I've run out...its my spray for electric motors on my RC cars.

    Please after you tried it tell us what happened. I also read about this procedure and decided to try it before I buy a new video card and luckily it worked. Of course I had to remove the HSF.
  4. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Hot or cold water ?
    some hsf don't seem to be able to remove, just continue ?
    soak or scrub ?

    Doesn't water destroy electronics ? (ie conductive)

    OK, well if the card's gone anyway, what the hec. Usually I bash it with a hammer, or kick it anyway; this may be better !
  5. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    If they could develop a PC that would run under water it would solve the dirt and the cooling problems all in one hit. How green would it be if it did the hot water supply too? Where will it all end?
  6. Cinders

    Cinders TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 872   +12

    When my youngest was a baby he spilled orange juice all over my tv remote. It quit working, so I took it apart and washed it with hot water and the remote started working again. I've not had a problem with dead video card where I thought to fix it with a good cleaning, but I'll try that next time I do have a problem.
  7. Eddie_42

    Eddie_42 TS Rookie Posts: 173

    yes video cards are conductive, but that only matters if you supply an electric charge, ie...dont shock the water when your messing with it, and make sure it is dry before re-installing.

    Ive never heard of this before, kinda crazy it works, does seem to go against all logic of computer maintenance.
  8. derrycraig

    derrycraig TS Rookie Posts: 47

    The capacitors can retain a charge even when the power supply is dissconnected, it would be best to let the capactiors discharge fully before trying this as it could short out the card and there is also the issue cleaning products leaving conductive residues on the surface of the card.
  9. kpo6969

    kpo6969 TS Maniac Posts: 710

    That has to rank up there with the put the fried hard drive in the freezer trick. That has been known to work also.
  10. ZXT

    ZXT TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 21

    Actually I've tried that about 3 or 4 years ago. It worked 1 out of 3. Not bad when you're all left with dead hard drive anyways.

    Again for those who wants to try it, make sure this will be your last resort when washing video cards or mobos. I didn't have any problem removing the HSF and I didn't care if the capacitor has charge or not because its not working anyways so I got nothing to lose. Make sure you rinse it thoroughly so you won't leave any dish washing soap residue. I used tap water so its not warm nor hot.
  11. mopar man

    mopar man TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 1,379

    I have a question, what kind of dish detergent did you use?

    Cascade gel takes chrome off of Die-cast cars (found out the hard way, a 1969 Barracuda I like got half the chrome pulled off of it :_() so I figure it wouldn't be too good for it. :p
  12. tastegw

    tastegw TS Enthusiast Posts: 188

    amazing story. years ago a buddy of mine thought he could do the same thing with his MR2 (toyota), so he popped the engine hood, and sprayed it down at the do-it-yourself carwash, lets just say, he was unable to drive it after that :) for a few hours.
  13. ZXT

    ZXT TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 21

    I used Joy dish washing liquid.
  14. MetalX

    MetalX TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,388

    Toms Hardware ran a high end PC (at the time) with a 6800 Ultra in a case filled with cooking oil, and only 1 fan (the power supply).

    Have a look...

  15. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,514   +2,308

    Clean your box and give yourself a suntan......!

    If memory serves, Cray Super Computers run in cooling oil, (or ? as the case may be). If so, not such a stretch.

    Most electrical contact cleaners are chlorinated flouro-carbons, ozone killers, although probably slightly less destructive than R-12.
  16. MetalX

    MetalX TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,388

    Aren't CFC's illegal though?
  17. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,514   +2,308

    You Caught Me ......Exaggerating a Tad......

    They're actually not CFCs but multiple derivatives, first cousins of CCL4, Carbon Tetra Chloride. Carbon Tet has been removed from stores, (long, long ago). It was also "Carbona", a home spot remover/ dry cleaning agent. Carbon Tet is a deadly hepatic agent. The more modern formulas of contact cleaners are based are based in tri & tetra chlorinated, ethane/ etheylene compounds. Electrical cleaners tend to be a tad more gentled-down than some chemicals in this family to mute their destructive effects on plastic, (or so they say). Needless to say they're certainly not anywhere near good for you.

    The Carbon Tet was banned for the reason it had strong tendencies for trans-dermal assimilation in addition to toxicity by inhalation along with the obvious you can't drink ANY of it.

    I'm not sure what the environmental risk associated with these compounds, I'm going to check into it. I painted automobiles for a while and the hazardous substances there are like the who's who of toxic waste.

    Carbon Tet is used in the manufacture of Chloroflourocarbons.
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