Bad Capacitors on Motherboards
This problem has become widespread among all major
It is generally accepted that this major problem was due to
some Taiwanese companies stealing an electrolyte formula from one of their
competitors. The formula was incomplete and this problem was not discovered
until they had produced and distributed millions of these capacitors to the
major motherboard manufacturers. The flawed capacitors will start to bulge, then
leak, and eventually fail in as little as 6 months.
A bad capacitor on your motherboard can cause your system to
randomly crash, power off or reboot itself, lock up, or just never restart
again. What can you do if this happens to your board? If its under
warranty, you should send it back. If its not under warranty, you can buy
a cap kit for about $35 and try to remove and re-solder the capacitors yourself.
I would NOT recommend buying a cap kit unless you know what you are doing AND
you are 100% sure the motherboard quit working because of the bad caps and
nothing else. The 3rd option is to send it to a place that will replace
the caps for you. This is going to cost at least $80 and is NOT worth it
in my opinion because you can just buy a new motherboard for a little more
money. The counter argument from the companies selling these kits and
services is that you will need to reinstall your OS if you change your
motherboard. What they don't make clear to the layperson is that they are
referring to a new TYPE of motherboard. You CAN just buy the same
motherboard over again and swap out the old one with minimal problems.
Many times you can even get away with using a newer version of your motherboard
if it uses the same chipset and architecture.
Therefore, if your motherboard is under warranty just send it
back. If its not under warranty, and you want to keep your current OS just
like it is, you can re-purchase the same motherboard again and have it swapped
out. If your motherboard is no longer available, you can try the newer
version of your motherboard. If that is unsuccessful, and you only have
one computer, you can still save all of your files by adding a new hard drive
and installing your OS to that new drive. Of course there are many more
ways to save your data, but you get the idea.
Here are some pictures of some bad cap motherboards from
clients we have done work for. These particular motherboards were just
under 6 months old. The clients motherboards were replaced with the same
or new versions of the original so that an OS reinstall was not needed.
Cap in the middle is already leaking out electrolyte fluid.
Cap on the right is bulging.
Cap on the right has leaked fluid.
All the top 3 caps are bulging. The 4th cap is leaking.
Bottom cap is ok.
Cap on the right is leaking. Cap on the left is ok.