Fix Your Main Board?


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"How can I repair my Motherboard?" - Hummmmm

Motherboard repairing? Maybe - maybe not...

Basically if your motherboard (main board) has failed there is very little on the surface you can repair.

You can replace some of the caps, some of the larger resistors, and maybe an IC or two.

But other than a surface trace that has either been shorted out or lifted due to over heat there isn't much you can repair unless:

  • You have a completely furnished and supplied electronic repair shop.
  • You have the technical training to actually do a competent job of soldering.

I get these questions daily on my old main site Q and A:

Question: "My motherboard has failed, how do I repair it?"

Answer: "99.99% of the time the repair is a remove and replace the main board, motherboard low level component repair is a skill that takes time and tools to master."

There you have it in a nutshell.

But for those that have an urge to burn their fingers, ruin some components, then you can practice on a dead main board or other component as I point out in my Self Computer Repair Unleashed 2nd Edition Manual :

Now let's look at the make up of the physical properties of the motherboard or main board.

Modern main boards are made up of layers, some up to fifteen layers (high end servers and workstations). Each layer of PCB (Printed Circuit Board) starting from the lowest or bottom layer has a series of traces, then the next layer of PCB with a series of traces, then the next layer of PCB with traces, and so on to the top layer.

Once all the layers of the main board have the traces then each one is precision drilled for the pass through that are pressed in the completed main board. Then all the layers are stacked and a process (some are proprietary) is used to compress and bind all the layers together.

Then all the pass through are pressed in the holes that were drilled earlier in the process. Some main boards have layers that the pass through is put in before final assembly because they on go through two to more layers but not all. Once this process is complete then the main board is sealed.

Taking in to account that most main boards and multi layered PCB's are 'pressed' together vs. bonded with an adhesive. When the main board is heated to a point where the individual layers of the pcb warp then the pass through connections will separate, thus causing as break in connections.

This type of failure is normally observed with those owners that 'overclock' their processors and memory, this causes excessive heat especially around and under the memory, memory chipset, and processor.

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Newer main boards have very few components that are not surface mount, that is the component is mounted using short pieces of wire that go through all the layers of the main board and are soldered on the opposite side from the component holding it in place. The most common component that has a pass through connection and is soldered on the opposite side are the slots for add on cards, memory slots, and the processor socket. Most other components are surface mount.

Another draw back to repairing a main board or even an add on card is that the IC's, resistors, caps, and diodes that are on the card is that it is hard to find replacements. This is especially true with proprietary IC's.

I had a really nice video card that the fan retaining pins failed, the press in type that expand. When the fan fell off the processor the processor overheated and died. Cheap parts on a high cost video card, no replacement parts due to the processor being proprietary.

Emergency Repair
isk (ERD) - Will Yours Work?

Repair Disk

Custom made for you...

You keyboard isn't thirsty, and it doesn't need calcium. Milk and other liquids will ruin a keyaboard!

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Motherboard repair? Not as easy as it sounds...

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