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I'm fixing a computer and what appears to be gaffer tape is holding the power supply wires together that connect to the motherboard. When the wires are pushed towards the power supply (the upper left of the picture below) the computer regains its ability to turn on, however when left go, the computer will not turn on. I was thinking the way to fix it might be to apply some more gaffer tape, but I'm afraid it will wear out and I'll be back fixing the computer there anything else I can try?

enter image description here

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Fixing electrical faults with adhesive tape is always a bad solution (bad connections tend to heat up to the point of fire given suitable conditions). If you're not confident enough in your skills as an electrician (to resolder bad connection and/or replace a bad wire) - and since you're asking the question here I guess that is the case - go get a new PSU, they are not that expensive after all.

From your description it is not absolutely certain whether the issue is in the wires (why were they taped in the first place), the connection inside the PSU, or in the motherboard connector. This could be further analysed by holding another end of the wires still with one hand while nudging them with another. However I do find it quite likely that the issue is not the motherboard connector so swithing PSUs should fix it for good.

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Assuming all connectors are properly seated, then either one of the leads has broken its solder joint with the power supply PCB, or the conductor inside the sheathing has broken. Either way, you can try replacing the power supply, if you want something that'll work reliably; otherwise, fetch yourself a roll of duct tape and start lashing things to other things.

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I had a roll of duct tape at the location where I was attempting to fix this. However, I was concerned that since the gaffer tape that was already in place may have been placed there by the manufacture, that maybe I should have been using gaffer tape due to these wire's extremely close proximity to the CPU. I did not want to risk the board catching on fire later. – leeand00 Sep 2 '13 at 14:54
I did not want to risk the board catching on fire later. Also, the wires are rather will-full, and I don't think any kind of tape is going to hold it in place. – leeand00 Sep 2 '13 at 15:20
@leeand00 Oh, I don't recommend the duct tape solution, by any means. If for some reason you or your client can't manage $50 for a replacement PSU, it's the next best option, poor as it is. – Aaron Miller Sep 2 '13 at 18:55

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