Instructables

Asus Eee PC 1000H Spontaneous Shut Down

This is my wife's Asus Eee PC notebook. It recently began shutting down spontaneously. An Internet search suggests others have also had this problem. Often the suggested fix has been simply to get a new computer. But, in our case, the problem turned out to be a frayed cord inside the strain relief, which is a very inexpensive problem to fix.

My wife noticed her computer seemed to cut out when she happened to bump the power cord. There is a blue LED on the power converter brick that indicates it is working. While she was showing me how moving the power cord often caused the computer to shut down I happened to notice the blue LED went out at the same time. Wiggling the strain relief on the load side of the power converter frequently caused the blue LED to light again. 

Tools used--
Hacksaw
Screwdriver for prying
Sharp knife
Soldering iron
Multi-meter
Third hand to hold wires for soldering

Materials--
Solder
Electrical tape

 
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Step 1: Crack the case

Picture of Crack the case
I decided to crack the case on the converter brick. I used a hacksaw to cut along the seam. Then I used a screwdriver to break the rest of the case seam.
susanrm2 years ago
This is great. I almost sort of could have used it. :-) Fortunately no. Yesterday I was at a student's house, and my netbook wouldn't charge on any of the outlets. You'd think it would be more likely to be the computer than the house, right? Finally, I tried the last outlet in the room, and it worked. So it wasn't my computer. Phew! Nice to know this is here, though, in case I run into trouble in the future.

I wonder if Sugru would be a good fixer to hold the case together.
Phil B (author)  susanrm2 years ago
Thank you for looking and for your comment. When we moved into our present home 16 years ago the outlets were so worn that plugs fell out of the outlets by themselves. I am glad to hear there was no real problem with your netbook. I have seen Sugru projects on Instructables, but have never tried using it. I am still enthralled with hot glue as my universal adhesive even more to be desired than duct tape.

Since you have looked at a minimum of one of my Instructables, and possibly more, I would like to recommend Everyone Needs a Multi-Meter in view of your inquiry about a meter to check your washer/dryer circuit board at another Instructable.
susanrm Phil B2 years ago
Yes, I saw it, and it's on my reading list when I have time!

Their outlets were all in good shape. My guess is a seldom-used breaker was off, or there is a switch that controls those outlets that I don't know about.

Sugru is great. I got a pack at the Maker Faire in NYC at the Instructables booth this summer, and a couple more packs are on their way to me as prizes I've won recently!
Phil B (author)  susanrm2 years ago
The Instructable I linked on multi-meters is aimed at removing the intimidation many feel about electricity just enough that anyone can make a few basic tests so he or she can analyse and solve a number of very common problems to save time waiting and money spent on a technician. You could read it in sections as you need those particular parts, although some of it builds a little on previous segments.

In the Boise area we are a long distance from any of the Maker Faires.
drissel2 years ago
A persistent fix. My commendations.
Phil B (author)  drissel2 years ago
Thank you. It is not the only reason why a notebook computer might shut down spontaneously, but it is something so simple that it ought be checked before sending a good computer to the scrap bin, or before spending a lot of money on repairs.
rimar20002 years ago
Great, Phil!

Often the notebooks, PC and other devices have fails that seems magic. Almost all can be fixed as you have done, with patience and ingenuity.
Phil B (author)  rimar20002 years ago
Thank you, Osvaldo. I once had a book on automobile repair. It said the driver of the car is the ideal person to repair it because he knows the exact conditions under which the problem appears, which helps to diagnose it.
pfred22 years ago
Phil, I never knew you were such a technical maven! I've gotten a lot of electronics out of trash that all they had wrong with them was a broken wire, or maybe a solder joint had gone bad on an input wire. So great fix!

To make new strain reliefs for cables I often like to use insulation I stripped off other, larger wires. Sometimes in combination with heat shrink wrap tubing, and electrical tape as well. Depends how involved I want to get, the situation etc. I keep stripped off insulation in my box of "rubber junk".
Phil B (author)  pfred22 years ago
Thanks, phred. It would be great if my Instructables followed some well-developed plan and strategy, but the truth is that they are governed by what broke down most recently at our house. A few years ago I read "Upgrading and Repairing PCs" by Scott Mueller (13th ed.). That is where I learned about shorting one of the two gray wires on an ATX power supply to make a reset button where there is none, but I would need to check which one it was on a chart. I think it was pin # 7 or 8, rather than the other one with a much higher number. You should do an Instructable on your style of strain relief. It would be good information for all.
knife1412 years ago
Very good information, Phil. My netbook is a different brand, but I wouldn't be surprised if they all don't use power bricks made from the same factory. Thanks for posting this, and hope you and your family have a Merry Christmas!
Phil B (author)  knife1412 years ago
Thank you. On one level, what is in this 'ible is just another one on trimming out a frayed section on a cord, just like on any other set of earbuds, headphones, or on a phone charger. But, on another level, it is about an easy, yet unexpected resolution to a pesky computer shutdown problem that has nothing to do with opening up the computer. My wife has had this netbook for around four years and was not particularly hard on the power cable with wrapping it up too tight, yet, there was a problem inside the strain relief. Thanks for commenting. A blessed and merry Christmas to you and to your family.
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