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safely storing old computers and parts


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#1 roadrunningcoyote

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 02:54 AM

Hi. My situation: all the old desktops, laptops, etc (including hard drives, printers, scanners) are lately crowding the house, and I want to store them somewhere they won't get in anyone's way for the moment until I find time to resell them or something. I was thinking of putting them in our attic storage room or one of the many little closets we have up there. Problem is I live in the tropics, and it does get hot up there. I know high temperatures and computers and computer parts don't play well, but them being defective doesn't make me worried about damaging parts anyway, and I'm not too sure if I can even resell them. I guess I'm just looking for something convenient for now. So, is storing them in a hot place, at least for now, okay?


Edited by roadrunningcoyote, 17 April 2013 - 02:57 AM.


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#2 the_patriot11

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Posted 17 April 2013 - 09:07 PM

they need to be in a dry location primarily, living in the tropics id be more concerned about the humidity.


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#3 roadrunningcoyote

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 04:20 AM

Uh, not to sound dumb, but what/how does humidity affect computers and parts? "Dry" location? Is there any part like that in a house if you're in the tropics?



#4 chrisd87

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 07:14 AM

A high level of humidity can cause internal components of PCs to rust and degrade some of their essential properties, such as electrical resistance or thermal conductivity. Under extreme conditions, humidity can cause computers to short-circuit, resulting in effects ranging from loss of data to physical damage of some system components.  This situation can be aggravated further when computers are in environments that are not climate controlled such as warehouses or areas on industrial floors where other chemical vapours may be mixing with the humidity and becoming corrosive.

 

However, humidity can also condense inside the computer without the user realizing. This often happens when the computer is exposed to brusque changes in temperature. A typical example is when a computer is used in an air-conditioned office immediately after being transported in a vehicle exposed to direct sunlight.  The same effect happens when walking for a distance outside during the winter, and then bringing the computer into a warm office – A thin film of condensation could be covering the entire interior of the laptop.


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#5 the_patriot11

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 12:53 PM

what chris said. :D


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#6 roadrunningcoyote

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 09:24 AM

Ooh, thanks. Couldn't have asked for a clearer answer. :)

 

Uh, sorry for another question again, but (and yeah, I realize I haven't really thought this through, have to think in terms of possible reselling, so I'm now a little more worried about damaging anything, however defective) is there a way to minimize this risk? Say wrap up everything in plastic? I'd asked around and someone told me they'd be okay if put in boxes. And to (probably unnecessarily) go back to the heat issue again, it's a real scorcher up in the attic, and this is coming from someone who lives on the first floor and nowadays has to have a fan trained on them to prevent summer sweat. :)  Is there a way to keep them relatively cooler, if it's actually too hot for them (what is too hot, anyway?)? I've got internal hard drives taken out from older laptops  -- will they be more vulnerable than the ones inside laptops?

 

Thanks. Uh, looks like more questions got spawned, sorry.


Edited by roadrunningcoyote, 19 April 2013 - 09:25 AM.


#7 chrisd87

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 11:02 AM

The best way to prevent humidity from damaging your computer or laptop is to provide a climate controlled environment for it. Also as far as the protection of the components go, MAKE SURE to put expensive and valuable parts in an ANTI-STATIC bag. Not only does this prevent any charge of electricity from your body, but also prevents dust buildup as well. You don't have to put your components in anti-static bags, just make sure if you don't decide to go that route, that you ALWAYS discharge yourself properly before handling said devices. As far as the heat issue goes, just keep them out of direct sunlight and you should be ok. Find a place where its dark and cooler than the rest of your house, and place them there.


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#8 Animal

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 01:15 PM

If humidity is a major concern you can always throw a desiccant pack in each of the containers of components. Just make sure you check them periodically.

I use something like this when storing things subject to moisture or humidity changes.

http://www.amazon.com/Stack-On-SPAD-24-Desiccant-Long-Gun-Cabinets/dp/B003BW5SM4

Yeah it says it's for gun cabinets. But it works well around anything subject to negative reactions to humidity and excessive moisture.

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#9 roadrunningcoyote

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 03:45 AM

Sorry for the late reply.

 

 

 

The best way to prevent humidity from damaging your computer or laptop is to provide a climate controlled environment for it. Also as far as the protection of the components go, MAKE SURE to put expensive and valuable parts in an ANTI-STATIC bag. Not only does this prevent any charge of electricity from your body, but also prevents dust buildup as well. You don't have to put your components in anti-static bags, just make sure if you don't decide to go that route, that you ALWAYS discharge yourself properly before handling said devices. As far as the heat issue goes, just keep them out of direct sunlight and you should be ok. Find a place where its dark and cooler than the rest of your house, and place them there.

Thanks! Um, sorry for sounding like an idiot, but electricity from my body can damage components (I'm assuming you mean the internal hard drives)? Just in case I can't find a nice dark and cool place, what would be the next best thing? Still the attic scorcher or leave them lying around the lower floors?

 

 

 

If humidity is a major concern you can always throw a desiccant pack in each of the containers of components. Just make sure you check them periodically.

I use something like this when storing things subject to moisture or humidity changes.

http://www.amazon.com/Stack-On-SPAD-24-Desiccant-Long-Gun-Cabinets/dp/B003BW5SM4

Yeah it says it's for gun cabinets. But it works well around anything subject to negative reactions to humidity and excessive moisture.

Thanks for this!



#10 anyrepli

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 08:27 AM

My personal advice is to sell them now to avoid all the possible ramifications as described above. Now, I tried that "save all old components" route and I ended up never using any of them because they became obsolete so quickly. So, after collecting a few boxes of outdated motherboards, old IDE drives, DDR2 memory, floppy drives, outdated power supplies and such, I decided to just recycle them all just to reclaim the space. Remember, the longer you wait to sell those old components, the less you'll get. Just my opinion and good luck with whatever decisions you may make.

#11 hamluis

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 03:00 PM

Whether they are of any value or not...why not just give them away?

 

I, also, have problems with getting rid of components...even when I know that they are of little benefit now/in the future.  I drop mine off at the local Goodwill in the hope that they may find some use for them.

 

I still keep backup hard drives and PSUs but I get rid of the excess.

 

Time moves on, providing us with better, more reliable components each day.

 

Louis



#12 anyrepli

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 03:11 PM

Whether they are of any value or not...why not just give them away?

 

I, also, have problems with getting rid of components...even when I know that they are of little benefit now/in the future.  I drop mine off at the local Goodwill in the hope that they may find some use for them.

 

I still keep backup hard drives and PSUs but I get rid of the excess.

 

Time moves on, providing us with better, more reliable components each day.

 

Louis

Hi Louis,

 

I also found out something very interesting about trying to reuse some of my older PSUs on newer mobos. Now, the old PSU matched the new mobo; in that, it had a 24 pin connector and a 4 pin connector; however, when I tried to plug those connectors into the new mobo, they just wouldn't fit! So, upon further inspection, I determined that the old PSU had slightly 'thicker' connectors than the newer PSUs and that was the problem. In summary, I know there have been several revisions to the specifications for an ATX PSU but I never though that I would not be able to fit a 24 pin connector into a 24 pin connector.

 

I also use Goodwill because they are an official recycle center for all Dell parts.


Edited by anyrepli, 23 April 2013 - 03:13 PM.


#13 anyrepli

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 03:33 PM

 

Whether they are of any value or not...why not just give them away?

 

I, also, have problems with getting rid of components...even when I know that they are of little benefit now/in the future.  I drop mine off at the local Goodwill in the hope that they may find some use for them.

 

I still keep backup hard drives and PSUs but I get rid of the excess.

 

Time moves on, providing us with better, more reliable components each day.

 

Louis

Hi Louis,

 

I also found out something very interesting about trying to reuse some of my older PSUs on newer mobos. Now, the old PSU matched the new mobo; in that, it had a 24 pin connector and a 4 pin connector; however, when I tried to plug those connectors into the new mobo, they just wouldn't fit! So, upon further inspection, I determined that the old PSU had slightly 'thicker' connectors than the newer PSUs and that was the problem. In summary, I know there have been several revisions to the specifications for an ATX PSU but I never though that I would not be able to fit a 24 pin connector into a 24 pin connector.

 

I also use Goodwill because they are an official recycle center for all Dell parts.

 

Oh, now I think I remember what happened with that 24 pin power supply connection problem. Apparently, there was an ATX PSU standard revision to remove pin 20 (I think) as it was deemed no longer necessary. Now, I think my older revision power supply did have a pin 20; however, the newer mobo had a slight bump (sticking up) where pin 20 should have been. So, it was that bump that would not allow me to connect the oler ATX PSU all the way into the newer mobo (I think).






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