Can a washing machine damage computer hardware?

Discussion in 'Overclocking & Hardware' started by dcl, Dec 31, 2010.

  1. dcl

    dcl Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2002
    Messages:
    4,267
    Location:
    melbourne.au
    So, my washing machine is on the same circuit as my computer set up. Every time the machine spins up down it induces awful noises in my speakers. I'm wondering/guessing this would have an adverse affect on my precious computer hardware.

    Lately my system has been randomly resetting, window is calling it a 'Kernel Power error' (http://forums.overclockers.com.au/showthread.php?t=928350) and I'm deathly afraid that through constant electrical torture the PSU or CPU/MOBO/RAM's have been damaged. :o What is the likelihood of this?

    Any thoughts? Do things like power conditioners work?
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2010
  2. terrastrife

    terrastrife Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2006
    Messages:
    18,414
    Location:
    ADL/SA The Monopoly State
    active pfc psus generally work throughout the whole 100-250v range and if its a good psu it should keep the rest of the shit connected to it safe.

    as youve noticed though, speakers are usually shit in this regard :)

    the main problem about being on the main circuit is proably tripping it with power usage.

    try a differnet circuit, problem goes away? go get yourself a good active ups.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    dcl

    dcl Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2002
    Messages:
    4,267
    Location:
    melbourne.au
    A good active UPS eh? How much do these usually cost? :o Also, given that the computer has worked fine for an entire year, but only now having issues, does that mean a component has been degraded? Even if the problem goes away with an UPS.
     
  4. Frag

    Frag Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2002
    Messages:
    4,780
    Location:
    Perth
    All computers should be on a UPS if you value its continued functionality

    My old house (only few years old) had terrible electrical work and i heard the PSU switch almost everytime any circuit was used in the house (every light flickered as well.. really poor electrical work!)

    Cheapest option is to attend your local computer auction and buy a second hand one that seems to hold some charge. Worst case scenario you may need to spend a little on batteries but they are a sinch to replace (do your research on inspection day, and know what they will cost!)

    I have seen enterprise UPS go for less than $200 - and your typical 1KVA prob $100-200 in most cases - obviously depends on the auction house or crowd on the day.

    I have a 1KVA Powerware bought for $60 and has lasted 18 months with 24/7 use (liquidation auction :)) - only lasts about 2 mins when power goes out now but it still has enough juice to condition the power..
     
  5. terrastrife

    terrastrife Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2006
    Messages:
    18,414
    Location:
    ADL/SA The Monopoly State
    and the batteries are around $350 >_<
    because theres no point buying a shit abttery.
     
  6. OP
    OP
    dcl

    dcl Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2002
    Messages:
    4,267
    Location:
    melbourne.au
    Interesting. I've literally go no idea how UPS's work or what to look for. I'm concerned that even if I get one, the PSU/CPU/Mobo/RAM might still be damaged?

    I'm running prime now, will let it go for a few days. Then I'll source the PC's power from another room, see if that makes a difference.
     
  7. Frag

    Frag Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2002
    Messages:
    4,780
    Location:
    Perth
    Basically a UPS is a battery backup and power conditioner basically producing nice sine waves for your PSU ... good clean power.. and when there is a power spike etc it will filter it out before it gets to your pc.

    Is your PC overclocked? It may just be the summer weather? Check your temps
     
  8. OP
    OP
    dcl

    dcl Member

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2002
    Messages:
    4,267
    Location:
    melbourne.au
    At stock, temps are good. Can you simply buy a power conditioner, or does it need a 'battery' (or some capacitors) to smooth it out?

    Running Prime95, we'll see if it detects an error before another spontaneousness reset.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2010
  9. FaTs

    FaTs Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2002
    Messages:
    1,455
    Location:
    Bris Vegas...
    I wouldn't bother with a UPS (they can be annoying as hell, beeping all the time, clicking onto batt ectt.) a good powersupply is fine.

    Brownouts, sudden powerlosses don't phase my pc's (tagan and old enermax psus) the LCD will drop out and come back and the pc is still going strong.
     
  10. Tenoq

    Tenoq Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2003
    Messages:
    4,134
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Depends on your area IMO. UPS is basically a required accessory here for any PC you care about, active PFC or not. I killed two of those "old enermax psus" in a row before I woke up and invested in a UPS! :)

    I'm interested that terrastrife suggested batteries cost $350. What UPS do you have that has batteries THAT expensive? And a lead-acid battery is a lead-acid battery, is it not? What do you get for spending so much? Surely the UPS circuitry is the important part, not the battery (assuming it can provide stable voltage).
     
  11. bb7_rider

    bb7_rider Member

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2005
    Messages:
    2,458
    Location:
    Mosman NSW
    Also depends where you get the batteries from to a large extent... Work paid the company they bought our UPSes off around $500 each for replacement batteries when they died the time before last and all they did was courier them to us, didn't even do the replacement job themselves. The last time they died I was able to source them through an alarm supply company for $120 per UPS! Shop around and you will find a much better deal.

    It does largely depend on the size of the UPS though (obviously) I'm sure with the larger 3 phase UPSes it would cost thousands to replace all the batteries (Hence why we were able to salvage one in good condition that needed all the batteries replaced from the scrap metal recyclers) :lol: Not sure what the specs on it are but it's about 1.2m cube and takes batteries much bigger than car batteries, dad got it as a project with the idea it could power his place with the aircon running if the power ever went out. :Pirate:
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2011
  12. One Drone

    One Drone Member

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2003
    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Townsville
    Speakers and amplifiers will be more susceptible to mains noise especially if they aren't expensive. A good PSU should do a good job at filtering any spikes, but if the mains really drops away say beyond 10% from 240v, then I would consider another circuit, a UPS or look into the washing machine?
     
  13. cvidler

    cvidler Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Messages:
    11,682
    Location:
    Canberra
    The two UPS I've got each have 7x 9AH 12V batteries. @ $40 each there's $280 per UPS. Bigger UPSs will take more/bigger batteries and cost more.

    And Active PFC (or not) has nothing to do with power filtering, so will help nothing on bad power. PFC 'corrects' the load seen by the electricity company, now as no home user in Australia is charged based on presented load, there's zero point in having it here.
     
  14. ccwd

    ccwd Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2002
    Messages:
    69
    No.
    I had cheap Jaycar batteries in my APC 1400. Lasted 8 months. Avg temp of the UPS was 55C.
    Bought some Henda Batteries here http://forums.overclockers.com.au/showthread.php?t=874931, avg temp 40C. Expect them to last much longer.
     
  15. oohms

    oohms Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2005
    Messages:
    2,191
    Location:
    Melbourne 3015
    Only if it is line interactive/double conversion.. the cheap ones do not contition the power much at all, they only switch over upon power failure
     
  16. other ed

    other ed Member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2004
    Messages:
    552
    Location:
    Sydney, South West.
    I have a crap washing machine too. It makes the speakers click and pop when it turns back and forth. Tried a UPS, it kept beeping and kicking up a fuss. I got the two filtering blocks out of an old UPS and put them in a small box with an outlet on it, better but still far from ok.

    I don't think I've ever lost any computer hardware because of it.

    Replacing the washing machine is on my to do list. Hope it fixes the water hammer problem too. Don't know why I put up with it so long...

    fwiw, a guy from the UK told me that the circuits over there are different. Here they are like a daisy chain of outlets, with the last one in the circuit being a dead end. In the UK the last one is wired back to the power box on the side of the house, so the circuit is like a loop and it stops interference. Could be a load of shit though.
     
  17. trevor68

    trevor68 Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2001
    Messages:
    4,237
    Location:
    Canberra
    Same, washing machine has induced noise in my speakers for many years now, still no PC hardware lost. :)
     
  18. Fishface

    Fishface Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    Messages:
    1,613
    Location:
    Adelaide
    I'd get a new power supply.

    The electrolytic capacitors in power supplys have a tough life and can be exposed to excess temperature.
    So it may have worked fine when it was new but if the caps have degraded it would cause reboots.

    Noise and small dips in voltage caused by a washing machine shouldn't damage a quality power supply.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2011
  19. Privatteer

    Privatteer Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2006
    Messages:
    776
    Some washing machines I've looked at have a armature and brushes in the motor. Others use a permenent magnet to avoid the brushes.
    Once those brushes start wearing out you can get some arcing which is probably what your hearing on the speakers.

    Very unlikly its caused any damage I would be looking at reinstalling windows 1st.
     
  20. Tenoq

    Tenoq Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2003
    Messages:
    4,134
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Oh of course - a big UPS naturally needs more batteries. But for the OP a small UPS using 1-2 12V 7AH batteries would be fine. I've been using cheap(ish) batteries in my UPSes and I still get 2-3 years out of them. I haven't used the Jaycar ones though - so perhaps they're especially rubbish. :p
     

Share This Page