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Power outage nightmare - APC?

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Posted · Original PosterOP

To start things off I did some research around the forums and there are people asking for help in these area but not so much of information being given. I would really like a breakdown since 3 days ago a video was posted on the YouTube channel about high wattage power supplies. 


First is my issues and where I went wrong; recently in Western North Carolina we have been getting some storms in the afternoon for the past two weeks. On Thursday we had some power outages that where about 5 minutes apart for the total of 4 times. I didn't think much of it since I was already in bed, if you can guess where this is going I lost two machines to this. First was my machine, I logged into a game I frequent to notice that my frame rates where dropping low... like 20s low. My machine is a i5-4430 with 16gb Corsair Ram with a Evga 970 SC and Corsair CX750M power supply. I also started to notice that my video card drivers would crash and recover, after some research I narrowed it down to my power supply not putting out enough juice.


THIS IS WHERE I MESSED UP. I built a machine for my wife which is a i5-3350p 8bg Gskill ram with a Thermaltake SMART SP750M power supply. Since I have my wife's machine turn it self off I unplugged everything pulled the power supply out and notice it was a little dusty nothing crazy since i blow my cases out once a month. I took the Thermaltake out and place it into my machine and powered it on to test if this is why my frame where low. Everything booted but i started to notice the smell of burning electronics so i powered off. I thought... It was just dust falling into the power supply so I crabbed a BestBuy house brand 500w power supply from my 3D printer and plugged it in since it was pretty clean and practically new.


This time one of my hard drives a WD 1T Blue CAUGHT FIRE! I instantly yanked the power out and waited for the smoke to clear. I thought to myself that this was odd so did a power test on the 500w PS and plugged it into my wifes machine and tried to get her system back up. Here is where stuff got weird and where I suspect the issue started, her Seagate 1tb HD was not being read.The comp would just go straight to the bios so I tried an SSD that was in my machine it also did not pick up. As a last resort i had an old laptop hard-drive that was a slow rpm that i swapped out for a SSD in my laptop and BAM it recognized it. 


I decided to BestBuy the next day and pick a new power supply for my machine, a hard drive and a ssd. I pulled a SSD that I was trying out in my ThinkServer for my wife's machine and by 1 pm on Saturday and I had both machines back up and running. Note i also grabbed a new surge protector for our machines and this is where my question starts. 


Are power supplies this sensitive to power outages? If I get a APC backup one for each machine and it powers down my machines is this really making a difference since the computer are still connect to the power grid? My wife doesnt use her machine much and it was already off during the power outages. It seems her power supply took the brunt of the damage. My power supply the Corsair seems to have taken some damage but my machine was running until i swapped them. Since my power supply never went into her machine and her hard drive was dead I can only guess that this is what killed my hard drive. Now that both machines are back running well... Everything SEEMS back to the normal, my fps is normal though I lost data. I understand what a surge protector does but does a battery back up really save your computer or just ensures a safe shut down and a possibility of saving data? Since computers are taking less power now is there a dang good way to fight back against power outages the last thing I want is to loose my 970 or my processor. 



Im not looking for a go google your question here (else i would of went to reddit), im trying to get some good feedback and maybe the team can do up a good video explain battery backup and surge protection. 



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1 minute ago, verb.zero said:


It depends sometimes a power surge can occur which can affect PSU's or damage them but for your system the CX750M would be way more than enough power for it. For your system though you should have all of them at the very least on a proper surge protector to help give them some protection even if it's marginal. 


As for UPS units it's mainly designed for preserving data and preventing and corruption during a sudden power outage and secondary to that to protect the PSU and hardware to a certain degree.


-Moved to Case and Power Supplies- 

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7 hours ago, verb.zero said:


I have a APC UPS.


I lose power for around 15 minutes per week, and my house was wired by donkeys so is completely and utterly rubbish.

Because of this I have frequent power surges when the fridge, microwave, washing machine, toaster or kettle turns on or off. 

The APC software allows you to control the UPS. I have it set up that not only does it supply power when I completely lose power but it will also cut the power from the wall if the volts from the wall go above or below a certain point. You can also set how sensitive it is. I have it on max so any spike will trigger the UPS. It will also let you know what triggered it, for how long and roughly when (by week / month)

Me and my wife both have a UPS. I've even got the modem connected to hers so if the power goes out for long periods of time then I can just use my tablet. It will power the modem for hours (around 7-10 hours).


You can also set it up to do 3 things when the power goes out. Send a shut down command as soon as power is lost, turn off the PC once you reach a certain % of power, keep the PC on as long as possible,


I think buying a UPS is one of the best things you can get.

If you can, then you should.

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Get a nice solid ups.

Undervoltage is pretty salty.

H440 Red+Black | i7 5820k | MSI r9 280x 3G | MSI x99a sli plus | Corsair h115i + Noctua ippc 3000 pwm fans | 1tb + 240 gb intel ssd | 4x4 gb Corsair Lpx 2400

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