VGA port Sparks! Melted Metal

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by JBmtk, Mar 17, 2010.

  1. JBmtk

    Thread Starter Member

    Jun 29, 2009
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    I was connecting my VGA cable from my monitor to my HP docking station when all of a sudden huge sparks come out of the port! The metal on the cable is melted back and some of the pins (15, 10, 5) are black.

    I am assuming that the cable make contacted with the screw holes on the docking station. Now the VGA port on the station no longer works..it keeps on shorting out when I connect the other side to the monitor.

    Monitor was not harmed, but I am scared to put in my laptop...what do you guys think?

    I connect the monitor to my laptop and everything works...so I know that the cable is not at fault.

    Edit:

    I just remember that my docking station was plugged into an outlet that I had just previously done work on ( moved it).
    Perhaps the wires got mixed up. Weird thing is that the charger still works fine, plus the laptop was later plugged into that same outlet and worked fine.

    Maybe the GND pin on the VGA cable arched over due to faulty outlet wiring?
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2010
  2. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
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    Umm, you have a short in your docking station. Unplug it from the wall and do not touch it until it is unpluged. You could hurt/kill yourself.
     
  3. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
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    You wouldn't get enough power out of the vga port to cause damage like that, in that short amount of time. Your wall mains must be shorted to the case and when you grounded it, it arced.
     
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  4. JBmtk

    Thread Starter Member

    Jun 29, 2009
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    so your saying that if I would actually make contact with the case and something metallic to ground myself, I could get shocked....?

    Weird how the AC adapters would still work fine though.

    I don't understand how the mains are being shorted to the case
     
  5. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
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    Is the dock plugged DIRECTLY into the wall or is there a AC - DC converter?

    Hoprfully there is an AC adapter. that would at least give you some protection.

    I may have spoken too soon about the mains being direcy, but even with a laptop AC adapter, thats a good amount of juice coming through.

    And yes, you could easily have been shocked.
     
  6. JBmtk

    Thread Starter Member

    Jun 29, 2009
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    AC-DC converter
     
  7. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
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    Phew.. Did you spill anything into the dock? paperclips? soda?
     
  8. R!f@@

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 2, 2009
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    There's no way he won't end up without a shock with a metal melted due to a spark.
    Leakage is not that strong to melt any think.
    Somethings a miss here.
     
  9. R!f@@

    AAC Fanatic!

    Apr 2, 2009
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    can you post some pics
     
  10. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    Is the monitor, port and everything else plugged into the same wall socket, so they share the same supply ground? If they are in separate sockets, it is possible one socket is incorrectly wired or defective.

    John
     
  11. JBmtk

    Thread Starter Member

    Jun 29, 2009
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    Yes, separate sockets and different breakers.

    Long story short, I rewired my room because I wanted to move stuff around and there was this one lone red wire that I had to connect to Black to make 1/2 of the other room work. I am going to need to go back and switch the wires around to make sure this won't happen again.

    The spark ONLY happens when the VGA is plugged into the monitor AND the docking station. This makes me think that you are correct in your hypothesis.

    I don't understand how

    a) the PSU did not break
    b) why everything else works when connected to the outlet.
    c) How the docking station case was able to arch
     
  12. retched

    AAC Fanatic!

    Dec 5, 2009
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    Yea, fix that. You mixed two phases most likely.
     
  13. JBmtk

    Thread Starter Member

    Jun 29, 2009
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    I think if I switch the two wires, this problem will be solved.

    Hopefully my dock still works, even though I already ordered another one :(

    Will post back later with results.

    Thanks
     
  14. jpanhalt

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    Jan 18, 2008
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    I think rather than swapping wires, it is best to prove what is the source of the problem. Plug everything into a single power strip. If it still works and doesn't spark, then it is a wall socket.

    At that point, I don't think I would assume two wires were swapped. DO NOT JUST SWAP THE WIRES. You run the risk of a dead short on one phase/leg of your mains power. You might get a big spark, and you might just burn the house down. IF YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING AND HOW TO TEST FOR WHETHER THE WIRING IS CORRECT, DON'T DO IT. There are other explanations besides a swapped phase, but you are headed down a very dangerous road, and it is not one I want to facilitate.

    John
     
  15. Audioguru

    New Member

    Dec 20, 2007
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    You wired your mains outlet wrong and one device was plugged into it and had its ground connected to a live voltage and the other device was plugged into an outlet that was wired properly that its ground wire connected to ground. So you had 15A or more travel though the connections of the devices.

    If you don't know how to simply wire an electrical outlet then let a licenced electrician do it so you don't kill somebody (maybe you).
     
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