Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

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Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby Immunity » Thu Sep 07, 2017 7:42 am

Hello all,
I posted this in another forum. Iam now looking to see if I can fix my GPU. Here is the story
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Unfortunately my 2 year old son dropped water with his baby bottle on the top vents of my gaming computer and the first contact on the way down was the rx480 on which the side that had the electronics was facing towards it. I was gone on a trip, but from what the wife is telling me is that it seems like it was a good amount of water, yet it wasn't really comparable to a full cup of water spilling inside.

The PC would not turn on at all it would just give a LED flash from the motherboard, UNTIL i removed the rx480. I tried to reseat the card with no luck. I also tried using a different PSU port that was going through the same harness again with no luck.
I then installed my older R9 360 (that doesn't need additional PSU power) on the same slot and the PC is turning on and graphics working fine. So it seems that the rx480 got fried.

As I looked closer at the rx480 electronics' side i noticed that there is a "hole" on what seemed to be a connected metal? I highlighted the bad one in the bottom as well as one that seems to be what it should look like on the top red circle (SEE IMAGE @ https://ibb.co/cMWRoa)
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My question is, what is the purpose of these things that I marked on the image? the one that is melted sits right in front of the HDMI port that was being used at the time. I've already opened up the RX480 and there is not visible damage to any of the components or capacitors, just that melted hole? Would it be worth it to just resolder it back?

thanks in advance
Immunity
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Re: Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby Karlsweldt » Thu Sep 07, 2017 8:58 am

Plain water is not very conductive. But add sugar or any other flavoring, and can be very conductive for voltage and current! Even the water in a home that has been "softened" can contain sodium (salt) ions.
Sensitive electronics can be shocked to death by higher than intended voltages.
And the shock of sudden temperature changes can cause cracking or separation of components.
Not sure of the purpose of those marked areas, only the manufacturer knows.. and may have a schematic detailing their use.
Typically, there are small marks by components.. a "C" with a number would denote a capacitor, an "L" with a number would denote a choke or inductive coil, and an "R" with a number would denote a resistor. If an "F" with a number, likely a fuse. A "T" is likely a test point.
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Re: Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby Immunity » Thu Sep 07, 2017 9:11 am

Thank you Karlsweldt! I will try to find information from the manufacturer. At this point I think I am going to try to resolder it as a small project and assume that probably I am going to have to buy a new GPU.
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Re: Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby Karlsweldt » Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:47 am

There are pro shops that can test the card to see if it is worth repairing. But the cost may be close to that of a new card.
Check with http://www.badcaps.net/ about possible repairs. Good place for 'bad caps' work on motherboards.
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Re: Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby bdub » Mon Sep 11, 2017 12:23 pm

let us know if you get anywhere on this. it'd be great to know about.
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Re: Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby Immunity » Mon Sep 11, 2017 12:41 pm

bdub,

I recently received a small soldering kit that I ordered. Never really soldered before but it seems like an a good thing to learn. I am hoping to get this done whenever I get free time from the job and kids (a week or so).
I'll let you know if soldering the melted hole fixes the situation or not!
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Re: Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby Karlsweldt » Tue Sep 12, 2017 5:55 am

Soldering is a precise task. The iron or gun has to be sized to the job, and depending on material, use of acid or rosin core solder. For all electronics work, only rosin core solder is used. Acid core is used on some large metal work. The iron or gun has to have good heat, to quickly heat the joint and get new solder to connect the joint or refresh it. A golden rule for soldering is "get in and get out with the heat". This is so you don't damage nearby circuit traces or components. Takes practice to be a good soldering tech. A finished joint that is shiny is a good joint. Dull or hazed, a bad joint.
Get some tips from You Tube for soldering, if you are a novice. Also some pro sites worth checking.
http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to- ... soldering/
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Re: Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby Immunity » Tue Sep 12, 2017 11:12 am

awesome Karlsweldt,
I fully understand, this is part of the reason why I am postponing this (watching variety of videos and such). I'll probably practice on junk boards prior to moving on to the GPU hole. thanks for the reference!
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Re: Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby Immunity » Sat Sep 16, 2017 12:24 pm

Hi all,
So I resoldered (or filled) that hole but unfortunately the card is still not working, something probably got fried in there that i can't see visually. Also a very small and fine electronic piece fell off as I was putting back the card so I don't even know if that was another problem. Oh well I tried and I kind of learned soldering!
Got to save now for another GPU. Here is an image of the soldered hole if you are interested https://ibb.co/d63GZQ



Thanks everyone for the help!
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Re: Could I fix RX480 by trying to resolder melted hole?

Postby Karlsweldt » Sun Sep 17, 2017 8:01 am

The only way to know what that 'hole' was for, or what if anything was connected there, is to find an exact same video card from the same production run. Or if you are lucky to be favored in 'high places', and can obtain schematics.
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