[kwlug-disc] The sweet(?) smell of power supplies

Bob Jonkman bjonkman at sobac.com
Sat Apr 5 16:03:39 EDT 2014

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It may be the glue holding some of the components together. My guess
is that they vibrate or buzz, and rather than spend money on better
components they just slap some hot-glue on it to keep it quiet.

If that's the case, then burning it in on a lab bench for a day or two
should cure the glue, and it'll be relatively odour-free. You have a
lab, right?

On the other hand, if the smell is coming from components that don't
heat up then burning it in won't accelerate the out-gassing.  Maybe
running a hot air gun over it for a while...

Also, Computer Recycling has used power supplies that may not be horrible.

- --Bob.

On 14-04-05 03:56 PM, Darcy Casselman wrote:
> PC hardware question, not specific to Linux, but some of you folks
> may have ideas.
> My partner has some rather significant allergies and sensitivities.
> She also needs to replace her 12-year-old desktop computer.
> In general electronics tend to be okay for her, but the power
> supply seems to be a stumbling block.  New power supplies smell
> really bad, triggering her sensitivities.  And they're blowing that
> bad air into her living space.
> Does anyone know of a retailer that sells power supplies that she'd
> be able to crack open a bunch and give them a sniff-test?
> Is there somewhere we can look at used power supplies, preferably
> from hopefully neutral office environments (rather than, say, the
> homes of smokers or pet owners)?
> We're not entirely sure what it is in the power supplies that is 
> triggering her.  We know that the PVC wiring is bad (I'm not
> holding out much hope, but if someone knows of a manufacturer that
> coats their wires in something other than PVC, that would be very
> useful to know).  But we've tried a bunch and haven't come up with
> much luck.
> Any suggestions would be helpful.
> Thanks! Darcy.
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