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Old June 27, 2008, 12:54 PM
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Default Grounding yourself?

So I'm about to build my PC! I just need the motherboard shipped.

Since static can completely wtfpwn a computer, how do you ground yourself? I have a static strap, I suppose you clip it on your case, but do you need to have the case plugged in to ground it? Or you just need to clip and forget? Any other ways?

I've heard you can also use latex gloves, and get cheapo rubber shoes.

Also I'm going to work on a ceramic floor with a wood table. I assume these are pretty static-free environments?
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Old June 27, 2008, 01:04 PM
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I don't usually. I generally lean against the case, thats it.
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Old June 27, 2008, 01:30 PM
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The biggest issue issue is to ground yourself to the case before doing any work on the individual components.

I work with explosive carts so it's old hat for me, but so long as you get into the practice of grounding yourself prior to doing any work you should be fine with or without the case grounded to the plug. (The important bit is being at the same "potential" as the components you are working with).
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Old June 27, 2008, 01:35 PM
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You don't REALLY neeeeeed a strap. I don't use it. It's only good if your working on shag carpet and with wool socks. If you're smart, you would touch your case every once in a while and stay still.
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Old June 27, 2008, 01:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bojangles View Post
You don't REALLY neeeeeed a strap. I don't use it. It's only good if your working on shag carpet and with wool socks. If you're smart, you would touch your case every once in a while and stay still.
Yeah, that's usually how I worked when changing parts. I'm just insecure because it's my first full-blown system and I don't want to screw anything up.

So if I snap the strap to the case, I should stay around the same voltage as the individual parts? Or does the case needs to be plugged in (with the PSU off) to ground it?

Cheers.
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Old June 27, 2008, 01:57 PM
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I just touch the case (the metal) with both hands before picking anything up and installing it,
and avoid as much as possible touching of any contacts, traces, on boards.

Circuits these days are not as susceptible to static as they once were, especially once assembled onto the PCB.
Old CMOS used to be really bad, but most ICís have some input protection these days.
But if you have enough static to cause an arc youíll likely blow something,
so some precaution should be taken.
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Old June 27, 2008, 02:00 PM
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Just touch the PSU case, it doesn't need to be plugged in. All you're trying to do is discharge any static electricity you've built up. Because you're working on a tile floor and wood table, you won't have any issues. Those of us with carpet everywhere have to be a bit more careful.
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Old June 27, 2008, 03:05 PM
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The PSU does need to be plugged in, that's what the ground plug is for.
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Old June 28, 2008, 07:04 AM
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The PSU does NOT need to be plugged in. Touching the case will dissipate any built up static electricity you have created in your body, as SSWilson stated above. It's the difference between two or "potential" that causes the damage to components. The case it self will be the ground, not the plug. If your worried, using the strap won't hurt anything, just remember to take it off before you get another beer! Dragging the case over to the fridge probably won't help things. Good luck with the build.

The "ground" plug on the psu grounds the case to protect you from getting a shock when the computer is running if a wire comes loose makes a circuit out of the case. It's just another "neutral" connected to the case for shock protection.

Last edited by Mecher; June 28, 2008 at 08:02 AM.
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Old June 28, 2008, 10:12 AM
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Dude, just a "my own experience" here, but i lived in an apartment for a year that was so bad for static that i could zap myself like 4 inches away from anything with enough juice to seriously numb my hand (or my wifes nose,ear,lips....) for a long time. I built many many many systems in that house, and repaired many more (none broken because of static) and i dont use a static strap. touching the case before putting your hands inside IS sufficiant as everyone here has told you, BUT if it means the difference between peace of mind for you, they arnt that expensive and you can just alagator clip it to the case. I most certainly DO NOT recomend sticking your hands inside the case with it plugged in, there is enough power going through your computer to kill you, while this is unlikely it is still a danger, switching the psu switch off isnt enough. Everyone knows how complacent humans are and if you get in the habit of leaving it plugged in, eventually your going to forget to hit that switch and hurt yourself and may damage anything you remove from the motherboard while removing it.

Also a good habit to get into is to cycle the power button a couple times after turning the switch off and removing the power cable. there are places in the computer that store power for a short time after its been turned off and cycling the power button will drain it.

Congratulations on your (first?) build BTW, If you have any Questions about configurations, or problems you may have while building and tweeking your system just drop us all a line, We're all always ready and willing to help :D
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