Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.

Lock him up!
10694 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

# 237579 8-Jun-2018 15:01
4 people support this post
Send private message

Read my story. Really.

Old farmhouse, lots of wood, many rooms, smoke alarms in nearly every one. Originally I got ionisation alarms because I needed a lot and they were quite a bit cheaper. Lately I have been replacing them with photoelectrics, which have come down in price and which I now know are better. 

Computers at one end of house, sitting room at other end. That is where I was just now when I heard an alarm go off. Being cheap ionisation alarms, they often react to humidity or nothing at all so I am used to false alerts. But the alarm kept beeping and my cat was in the room and the cats hate that sound so I went to check on things.

I often have the computers on all day. The first thing I noticed was the acrid smell of burning insulation. Then I saw the smoke coming from the corner where the computer was. Then I saw the flame inside the computer. It was still working normally so I pulled the plug and blew out the fire. At first I wasn't sure of the source, though it seemed to be the DVD drive. But on closer inspection I saw that the SATA power lead was completely disintegrated. I still haven't done a close inspection but it looks like the lead shorted and set the insulation on fire. Maybe the DVD drive is faulty but I don't think so. It will be awhile before I can go over everything.

That was a very close call. Thank goodness for the smoke alarm. It may have 'only' been the ionisation type everyone is now so down on, but it really came through and saved the day. I can't express how grateful I am to it.

Photoelectric alarms may be best, but this experience dramatically demonstrates that any alarm is much, much better than nothing. All of us here surely know better than to be without, so let this serve as another timely reminder for your friends and relatives. 


I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney

Create new topic
510 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2032205 8-Jun-2018 15:17
Send private message

I'm glad you were home to hear it and that the fire wasn't able to develop further.

Lock him up!
10694 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 2032208 8-Jun-2018 15:24
Send private message

Thanks. The computer itself seems okay and I am using it right now (with the panel open and a close eye on it). Having had time to calm down and reflect a little, I remember that the DVD drive was very hot when I touched it, so this was clearly a failure of the drive that overloaded the power and melted the cable. Everything else seems okay, though.



I don't think there is ever a bad time to talk about how absurd war is, how old men make decisions and young people die. - George Clooney


2325 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 2032210 8-Jun-2018 15:29
Send private message

Runs home to power off PC. No I won't, mine go 24/7. Smoke was emitted in 2003 though as power supply went up and destroyed most things (in PC) apart from motherboard.


P.S. I have a Nest Protect.

188 posts

Master Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 2032219 8-Jun-2018 16:04
Send private message

Pleased to hear you are okay.


Certain molded sata to molex connectors have been known to fail and cause drive fires and would be more likely fail this way than the drive itself. Have a look at the cables when its safe for future reference.

2523 posts

Uber Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 2032220 8-Jun-2018 16:14
Send private message

Wow, scary.


People tend to leave computers on unattended and not doing anything... and it should be safe to do so! Not like leaving something on the stove top unattended.





Create new topic

Twitter and LinkedIn »

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:

Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:

News »

Arlo unveils its first video doorbell
Posted 21-Oct-2019 08:27

New Zealand students shortlisted for James Dyson Award
Posted 21-Oct-2019 08:18

Norton LifeLock Launches Norton 360
Posted 21-Oct-2019 08:11

Microsoft New Zealand Partner Awards results
Posted 18-Oct-2019 10:18

Logitech introduces new Made for Google keyboard and mouse devices
Posted 16-Oct-2019 13:36

MATTR launches to accelerate decentralised identity
Posted 16-Oct-2019 10:28

Vodafone X-Squad powers up for customers
Posted 16-Oct-2019 08:15

D Link ANZ launches EXO Smart Mesh Wi Fi Routers with McAfee protection
Posted 15-Oct-2019 11:31

Major Japanese retailer partners with smart New Zealand technology IMAGR
Posted 14-Oct-2019 10:29

Ola pioneers one-time passcode feature to fight rideshare fraud
Posted 14-Oct-2019 10:24

Spark Sport new home of NZC matches from 2020
Posted 10-Oct-2019 09:59

Meet Nola, Noel Leeming's new digital employee
Posted 4-Oct-2019 08:07

Registrations for Sprout Accelerator open for 2020 season
Posted 4-Oct-2019 08:02

Teletrac Navman welcomes AI tech leader Jens Meggers as new President
Posted 4-Oct-2019 07:41

Vodafone makes voice of 4G (VoLTE) official
Posted 4-Oct-2019 07:36

Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.

Support Geekzone »

Our community of supporters help make Geekzone possible. Click the button below to join them.

Support Geezone on PressPatron

Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.