Damaged a capasitor

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E-Quality

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Dec 4, 2002
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When installing a CDRW into my new computer I accidentally damaged one of the capacitor. One of the capasitor leg was gone and the other one hanging there. Bad MOBO design overall. They put things stack up to each other. Anyway, if my computer is still running what is the potential problem I will face by damaging one capasitor ??

Thanks
EQ.
 
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It may cause you to lose the board,, its really not possible to tell you what problems it will cause.. where are you?? can you not solder it back together?? If you were here you could go to radio shack and pick one up.
 

E-Quality

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Yes, I am thinking of soldering back. Do you know much is that soldier material and that heater ??

thx
EQ
 
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No to be honest the last time I used any was a week ago and I borrowed the stuff from my Grandfather,,but I would think you could get by without spending a lot..pencil irons are the cheapest I know about. But there may be something else on the market by now.
 

JohnWill

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First off, if you don't have the correct equipment, don't start soldering on your MB, unless you always wanted to upgrade anyway. :)

If this is a small electrolytic cap, it's likely that it's not critical to the operation, though it's not a good idea to remove them. :) Exactly what does it say on the part, and what are the dimensions of the cap in question?
 
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If it is an electrolytic capacitor I would definately worry about it. Your system will become unstable due to incorrect voltage regulation and possible damage to other components in your system...processor, add on cards. And the capacitor just sitting there with one leg dangling loose is an invitation for disaster. You can probably find a replacement cap at the local radio shack with the same specs to solder back on the board.
 
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I agree in part with Rockn.

I would not replace it yourself unless you positively know what your doing though.

The danger of static electricity and excessive heat from a soldering pencil can ruin your motherboard quickly
 

JohnWill

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Most of the electrolytic caps on a MB are bulk capacitance for P/S filtering. It's unlikely that one cap being missing will seriously affect the system if it's still running without it. I do agree that totally removing it is a good idea, simply to avoid it contacting the wrong place.

One problem with soldering a new one on is damage to the MB, also if the existing one isn't clearly marked, getting the polarity reversed can lead to an interesting issue, if not serious MB damage. Electrolytic caps explode like a firecracker when they have reverse polarity if enough current is available, especially the tantalum ones. If not, they will simply short and either cook a trace or shutdown the voltage they're connected to. In short, if the system is running fine without it, unless you really know what you're doing, you'll be FAR better off not attempting a repair.

FWIW, I'm an electrical engineer and I've spent a lot of years designing avionics, I do have some idea of what I'm talking about. :)

Finally, I think that all of us would agree that the ideal would be to replace it and make the board 100% like it was before. However, if the risks of attempting that repair outweigh the possible benefits, I think you need to consider that in your thinking.
 

E-Quality

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I think i will fix it myself. I can still see half of the capasitor leg hanging and the other one still stay intact.

EQ
 
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It won't be easy,,,I would find somthing to practice on first,,I think soldering two legs will be difficult.. Like the others have said be prepared to replace the board.. But I also agree that the part was installed there for a reason, never worked for a company that installed unneeded parts,, sooner or later it will cause you trouble. I also will repeat that just like a battery that part will have a positive and a negative,,if you decide to replace it pay attention to the polarity. Also that chip is awful close to the capacitor,,if the broken leg solders in beside that small chip it I don't know that I would try it. Try to place the broken pieces as close together as possible, touching would be great, its very hard to make solder fill a void. Just touch the tip of the pencil Iron to one side of the part and touch the solder to the opposite side.
 
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