Laptop Model: Gigabyte Aero 14 (2018 spring i7-8750H edition)
At very beginning my OS Windows 10 started showing SMART alert and then one morning PC didn't boot any more. I have suspected SSD failure - because PC was still booting fine from USB stick. Laptop was purchased a bit over a year ago and still covered by warranty so I dropped it at service hoping to get cover and this is where surprise came back from them after a week. I was told laptop was damaged by water and since this is not covered under warranty I was suggested repair at cost of $1100 (laptop was originally purchased for ~$1700) or to take it back. They sent me pictures that according to them indicate water damage (referring to that brown stuff):
At first I believed it and I thought okay maybe fans sucked in humidity (for example iced drinks condense a pool of water on table close to laptop, or maybe rain and bag that is not waterproof enough) and over time humidity took a toll on components. But when I got my laptop back and opened to inspect closer I started doubting everything what warranty service told me. I also replaced SSD with one from different laptop and it booted up perfectly like nothing happened.
One thing I can't figure out is what is that brown gulk and where did it came from. Is it dust mixed up with humidity like I was told? I googled up what are those electronic elements that appear to be covered in brown stuff just around CPU and my search suggest that it is a line of capacitors. I know old larger type of capacitors used to be prone to bulking up and spilling out brownish liquid which to my inexperienced eye at least look very similar to what I have in my laptpo. So my theory is that this brown thing came from this line of capacitors. There is some of that brown stuff also on memory slot which I think I can explain. Looking at the bottom shield of laptop I see a leak starting at the location of capacitors and then running in a line straight towards the edge of laptop, passing through memory card and SSD. This can easily happen if leak deposited some liquid on the bottom of the laptop and then when I put my laptop in a bag vertically liquid would flow towards edge of laptop covering memory slot in brown because it's almost touching the bottom.
I called warranty service to express my doubts about water damage but so far was just told that my theory can't be correct because these capacitors are new type of capacitors and they don't leak. But I nevertheless was invited to come to service again to discuss the situation.
SSD drive probably wont be brought back to life and needs to be replaced. With warranty or without it's still at least far less than $1000 USD suggested repair cost so I'm still happy about this. But I'm wondering If that brown liquid did indeed came from some components of laptop be it capacitors or something else it can't be good in longer run. What kind of consequences/problems I might be expecting in future? Is SSD and this brown leak just a coincidence or possibly related (maybe heat problem)? And is there any chance for me to prove to warranty service that this damage was not caused by water and thus at least they should cover SSD cost.