I did something completely stupid the other night. I had left a small glass of water on desk from work, went back up to office at night, reached for lamp button in the dark, knocked water over - a portion of which went right down through the top of my case. This is something I've managed to avoid my whole life with computers, so maybe I was due to invoke my clumsy/careless side, or karma, who knows :) Anyway...
CPU: Intel i5-3570K 3.4 Ghz w/ CM Hyper EVO 212
Mobo: MSI Z77A-G45 Gaming ATX LGA1155
GFX: MSI GeForce GTX660 Ti 2GB
PSU: Corsair Pro 750W Gold Cert
16GB (2x 8) Crucial Ballistix sport RAM
NZXT Phantom 410 mid tower (I only mention this so you can imagine the config)
First, the computer powered down immediately (unfortunately it was on at the time). I jumped quickly behind the tower, pulled PSU cord and the rest, carried away from the area.
Inspected the damage - water was definitely on the GFX card in the most amount (about silver dollar sized splash), a little hit the bottom of the case, maybe a drop was on the PSU at the bottom, a splash was on the top fan, maybe a couple of tiny drops ricocheted onto the RAM sticks and into the heat-sink - most hit the case top though and did not get through. It did not look like anything got to the MOBO, as most liquid fell in vertically. GFX card took the most liquid. Damage done though.
Immediately dried water off with absorbent towels (was always careful of static/grounding), let dry.
At this point, I decided I would try and start up after giving it several hours to dry. My logic was that the components were dried, and the system shut itself down so fast, I was unconvinced there might be a capacitor exploded -etc. I do not know if this particular mobo has a circuit protection function, or even the PSU, but obviously the computer detected it somehow and tried to protect itself.
- The system completely powered on and did not shut off at any time. All fans spinning (3 case fans plus the CM hyper CPU fan), all LED indicators on MOBO blue (normal). GFX fans spinning as well. HOWEVER, monitor had no input coming from GFX card/no screen.Tried both a Display Port monitor and also my HDMI monitor to the card - no display.
At this point, I decided to pull the main components for further drying / cable reset / board inspection. Pulled GFX card, pulled RAM, pulled heat sync (needs cleaned and new thermal paste anyway), laid tower flat MOBO up. No visible water damage. So that is where I am at.
Here is my thinking on next steps -
- I do not believe the PSU is damaged. There was almost no water touching it anywhere and it still powers everything.
- I am unsure if MOBO, CPU, or RAM has damage. There was little to no water touching these parts either - but a drop or an ocean doesn't seem to matter to powered on electronics. I will wipe with alcohol and let dry further. Wont be able to tell with these until I can see the BIOS (if that even proves possible).
- The GFX card might be shot, but there is no way to know for sure until I wipe it down with alcohol and give it more time to dry out.
- The first thing I will try to do is use the MOBO's onboard graphics to see if the computer still works without the GFX card installed.
- Does anyone know if the MOBO's graphics are plug and play at this point? This MOBO has VGA, DVI, and HDMI capabilities. If I try to connect to monitor and boot BIOS screen, should it default to it's use?
- Is it possible that the surge/power off occurrence flashed my BIOS, and the reason my GFX card wasn't displaying is that it was loading the onboard GFX drivers by default? (This is me being optimistic) Maybe removing the card and putting it back in will work...?
- Should I flash my BIOS for the hell of it? Not sure of procedures after a surge-induced shut down. I have a convenient button for that...
- If I can get the MOBOs graphics to boot BIOS and WIN 8.1, then try the old GFX card and fail, I suppose I will be in the market for that GeForce 970... I am hoping that if anything is completely done for, it is just the GFX card. I can justify an upgrade there, but I really hope I do not have to replace the CPU and MOBO. Both are good components and use the 1155 socket, which is on it's way out. Replacing one or the other not in tandem is not really an option from a chipset evolution perspective.
So along with the questions / situation above, does anyone have any advice for me here?
Has this or something similar happened to you?
I'm all ears as I walk though this. I suppose I will update this thread as I troubleshoot more, but I am glad I have this community to share with. Google is crap on this.