[CLOSED] Share your PC Building Horror Story and enter to win a 3070 Graphics Card!



  • Hybridx
    My nephew had been begging my sister in law for a computer for months and I had  just upgraded from an i5 9400 and 1660 to a 9700k and 2070 and told his mother to buy him a case and power supply and I'd build him a computer from my old parts for Christmas. She did it and I built the computer and as I'm putting the glass side panel back on to close it up, the glass completely shatters and puts a few shards of glass in my hands. The best part was when I recoiled from the glass breaking and bumped into my 32" 165hz 1440p monitor and knocked it off my desk and destroyed the panel. Good times.
  • EddyTowers
    Wanting to get in to PC gaming, I decided to build a personal rig. Nothing too fancy, just enough to run the TWO games I ever play.

    After looking around on YouTube, I saw someone that had built a decent machine for about 300USD. I figured i would give it a try. I purchased a refurbished Dell that he recommended with the intent of upgrading the PSU and GPU. I also picked up a GTX 1070. Imagine my surprise when the GPU wouldn't even fit in the case. Ok, so I'll just buy a different case that it can fit in and it would look nicer, right? The new case did fit the GPU, but then I found out the stock Dell mobo wouldn't work with the PSU, so I bought a newer MoBo that would work. This is where I learned about CPU chipsets, and how the mobo i JUST bought wouldn't take the CPU from the Dell. Off to buy a new CPU. I should be good now, right? WRONG! Now the RAM sticks won't work because the Dell had DDR3 and the ASUS mobo has DDR4. Back to MicroCenter, I guess... Picked up a couple of case fans, and oh look! An RGB CPU cooler on sale. Hell yea! Get home to get everything installed, and why the hell does this ASUS mobo not have 5v RGB headers? I guess this 12v will work. It did. For a split second. Then a montage of  trying to figure out why the RGB on the stupid fan isn't lighting up. Ok. I give up. As long as everything works and is functional. 

    All in all, a $300 build ended up being closer to $700 and I didn't get to use a SINGLE component from the Dell. Not even the HDD. I decided to switch that out for an M.2 SSD. 
    One good thing from all of this was the experience though. I am now confident enough to build a PC for my girlfriend to start streaming. I also learned that doing ANYTHING with a Dell is a PITA.
  • Christian_Agama
    Basicly one time when I had all my parts in the box and hadn't start to build my pc my dog must have loved amd so much that he just couldn't wait for me to open the box and decided to chew it up completely with the cpu and destroyed basicly half the pins and the cpu even had a dent on it luck I had warrenty and told them the story the laughed and told me i could get a refund luckily. There was another time that I forgot to peal off the platic on the new motherbaord i had gotten because i planned to upgrade almost very part in my pc. The plastic caught on fire for a quick second while i was playing luckily nothing on the motherbaord got destroyed and the fire touched the graphics card and took it out to see if anything was harmed but luckily nothing was it was an only 1050ti. The Last one would probobly have to be that my glass pannel on my PC Case had shattered on the way to my house thanks to UPS kicking it around luckily someone at nzxt was very nice and helped me get a replacement.
  • Deaner1121
    One time I was cleaning my pc and decided to clean my radiator, and the condensation started to drip onto the radiator and I was almost certain it was leaking. Luckily nothing bad happened to it.
  • My horror story is not as grand as others, but tragically I almost lost a motherboard. You see, my coolermaster rgb cpu cooler has springs in the screws that screw into the motherboard. You see, I was shaking while pushing down on the springs hoping I would not break my motherboard and squish my CPU. Everything turned up alright though!
  • Zenno
    Imagine ordering all your parts for your first PC build expecting it to come within a few days but the pandemic shipping time became a week. THEN, you realize that the case that you ordered was NOT a glass panel version. Yeah, all that RGB and no glass panel to show it off. Now, you've already dedicated a whole day to build this PC only to find out you didn't have the right case. No biggie, just start with the motherboard and attach everything to it. Wait for new case in the meantime. Oh Wait... RAM is 3600mhz but the motherboard only handles up to 3200mhz?! Well well well... GUESS WHO'S NOT BUILDING A PC TODAY. Yeah, that is the horror story of my first day expecting to build my first PC but it took more like half a month to get all the parts right and installed.
  • OJ1010
    Back around 2018, I visited my cousins house late afternoon. However, this time instead of entering the house and seeing him playing on his PC, I was bestowed the sight of his whole PC disassembled and layed out. This was worrying because 1: I thought something broke, and 2: My cousin wasn't good with computers in the first place, so him having taken the whole thing apart was concerning. After talking with him about it, I realized the issue was clear, when pressing the power button on the PC, the whole system would flash and spin up for a second, and then immediately shut down. With the issue then realized, I took to trying to fix it. I tried everything from reseating the CPU to unplugging the GPU, which of course didn't do anything. Eventually after searching the internet for a while, I found a forum post (ironically on this forum) about someone with the same issue. The person later said that they found the issue to be with their power supply. Once I told my cousin this, he started to deny the claim that I made, saying it was stupid and unreasonable, because if anything his PSU should be the last thing to break. For context, my cousins pc compromised of a i5 6600k and a msi mobo that he got in a combo from ebay, a used 1060, a used case, and a used HDD. The only new thing in the PC was a EVGA 600w B1 psu from amazon. After trying to fix it for another hour, he eventually told me to find out a way to test his psu. This lead to me having to use the dreaded paperclip method (which I found out doesn't actually work all the time, so it was pure luck that it was actually the psu broken), and as a result my cousin was convinced that his psu was actually gone. Warranty was gone of course so he had to get a new one, which is still going to this day.
    TL:DR: I wasted about 6 hours, and almost risked being electrocuted by a psu just to troubleshoot a pc I already knew the solution of.  
  • Mikes1479
    I decided to build my first PC when I started college about 5 years ago in 2017. I spent months researching all the parts, getting the best deals that I could, and overall just taking my time with the process so I could build a $1000 PC for really good value. The build itself went pretty well I guess, it took me roughly 4 hours because it was my first time building a PC and I was really trying to be careful and do everything neatly / correctly. I had an AMD Ryzen Spire Cooler that literally took me about an hour to finally install on my CPU because you had to screw things in a very certain way and I was just getting frustrated. All in all, the build itself went fine and the PC ran well.

    So fast forward about a month, I am gaming on my new PC having fun when I reach over to grab a sip of water and knock over the cup, the water went ALL into my PC and I had a moment of sheer terror and panic. It took me about 5 seconds to process what had just happened but my first instinct was to power off the PC and unplug it which is luckily what you're supposed to do. I sat there in shame for about an hour pretty certain that I just fried several part of my PC because I heard water hit the fan of my GTX 1070ti and figured that it was all over. I did some research and learned the best thing you can do is wipe the parts with alcohol to avoid mineral buildup from the water, and pretty much just give it plenty of time to dry while no electricity is being supplied.

    Somehow, 5 days later when I finally had the courage to turn on my PC and see if I fried it or not, everything was working perfectly fine. I was extremely surprised and lucky to learn that this was the case. A big lesson I had that day is no more open cup beverages near my PC, from now on I exclusively drink water from blender bottles.
  • Pete_T
    About 5 years ago my wife and decided to put all of our pictures that we had scanned along with home movies into a new computer that I was building.  We had decided to use PLEX to be able to watch the movies and view the photos on a computer or TV.  As I finished up building and testing the new PC, I pulled my old mechanical hard drive out of my old PC that had all the scanned pictures and home movies.  The hard drive was one of those old slow ones, 5,400 rpm I think, so we decided to get a new faster and larger hard drive to transfer into the new PC.  I set everything up on the floor and put the old drive on a box as I began the transfer using a USB cable.  My wife walked into the room and was on the phone so she did not see the cord.  She got caught up on the cord and tripped which then whipped the old hard drive off the box it was sitting on and it hit the floor with a screeching sound.  That was the end of that hard drive and about 75% of the information had not transferred to the new drive yet.  Luckily we still had the pictures and home movies so I spent the next 2 months transferring everything directly to the new computer (this time with an extra backup drive).  
  • Last Wednesday I was built my first PC. After installing everything, it would not power on; no fans spinning, no RGB, no noises. I thought that I had installed my 24pin header incorrectly, but that didn't work. I unplugged and replugged everything at least 5 times, but nothing. However, when I was checking the connections in the back, I hit the psu cable, from the outlet, with my hip. Hitting this, I learned that I simply did not plug the psu in all the way.
  • Gaild
    This was early 2020 when this happened my mom gave me her old pc it had a amd phenom ii x4 with it and decided to get a xfx rx 570 because i wanted to game or sum shit but i got the card  from wish for only 75 bucks and it took about 7 months . And when it arrived it looked like it got  kicked repeatedly from a football field down and back. When i opened the box the card looked fine but very used and when i installed it and download the drivers the card overheat and catched fire killed the pc got pissed off called the seller got my money back.
    (btw dont buy shit from wish)
  • matcha
    During the summer I upgraded my Ryzen 5 1600 to a 3600. I planned on using the 1600 on a build that I would give to my girlfriend. I unscrewed the cooler, but the cooler was stuck to the cpu. I ended up ripping out the cpu from the socket and yeeted the cpu+cooler. Pins got bent and I had to get another cpu for my gf's build  🙃🙃🙃
  • I think probably about 6-7 years ago when I did my first build. Nothing special, it was a MSI z97 Gaming 5, i5 (forget which version), 32 gb ram and either a 670ti or 780ti. I had just started getting into PCs/components and what not and was all super pumped when the installation went flawless. Booted it up, got the BIOS squared away and got Windows installed. Got some things installed and carried on for a few days. One thing I noticed was the EXTREME amount of lag, rando BSODs, freezing/locking up things just not working. I'm like, uhhh what? I got 32gb ram, I should be fine, plus I'm barely doing anything. Found out that I actually installed a 32 bit version of windows and not 64 bit. Go me.
  • Bcomputer
    I was building one of my first builds ever and it was a AMD K-5 chip. I got it all together and left it on for the burn-in. Was running smooth. After the burn-in time I shut it down for the first time. I notice a burning plastic smell. The chip had melted the processor socket. Back in the day's when cooling wasn't so good.
  • 1TM
    1TM ✭✭
    First Anniversary Photogenic Name Dropper First Comment
    Building a PC with Asus Prime X370-pro board, I didn’t realize the voltage regulation modules’ heat sinks are razor-sharp, so cut my finger pretty deep while connecting the 8-pin CPU power cable. 
  • My Thermal paste was dried out... I tried to substitute with toothpaste .. I made a minty winterfresh smoke screen 
  • 4t4k3
    It took 2 weeks to get all the parts to my pc, then we realized we got the wrong case, then when we plugged everything in the pc wouldn't turn on. Turns out this was because we plugged the psu cables into the graphics card. Then we couldn't find a way to get the bios into the pc. Lastly, while I went to buy the case I saw that there were like 8 3060ti graphics cards in stock, 2 weeks after I had paid for a rog 2060.
  • DaxterbeerGMS
    My worst accident setting up my monitors was attaching my monitors onto a triple monitor stand.  When I was mounting backplate, I dropped a screw into the vent of my monitor.  I spent an hour trying to use a magnet and shaking the monitor for the screw to come out before carefully disassembling.  When I got the screw out and decided to test out the monitor, I saw a massive black bar across my screen.  I spoke to ASUS about repairs and they were kind enough to send me not a replacement, but an upgraded one since I was in the warranty period but they didn't carry the exact model.  That is how I went 1080p 180hz 24" to 2160p 165hz 27" by accident.

  • Zelda
    After placing the CPU in the socket I pulled the tension lever down and heard the sound of metal screeching
  • Fudonim
    Finished building the important bits of the computer and I wanted to install some cheap LED strips for that sweet RGB (This was before everything had RGB on it). We soldered some old phone wires as a power source and hot glued the wires to the edge of the case so it wouldn't snag when I removed the glass panel.
    Some of the hot glue went into the PSU vent and when I tried to clean it out, I only made it worse. Had to buy a new PSU.
  • JoPaMi
    I was building my first PC, around 2007, and I ordered all the components, the best I could afford (and some I couldnt really afford) and watched every YouTube video I could find about putting this together. I had the newest bios ready to flash, my static bracelet, nothing was going to go wrong. I literally found every possible video on what NOT to do. 

    So when I went to put the the CPU in the AM2 slot I was so nervous that I dropped it WAY too early with my shaky hands... You might be able to guess what happened. CPU would not go in because the pins were bent in one of the corners. I spent hours trying to bend them back. I had to wait another couple of weeks (no 2 day shipping then) to get a new CPU. 
  • AdamT
    Young and dumb, I bought a SFF barebones system (case, MB, PS, and fans all integrated essentially) and stuffed it full of a 10k RPM drives running raid 0, couple big storage drives, top of the line GPU, and a screamer CPU with a beefy active cooler.  Everything worked, the noise sounded like a jet engine, and thermals weren't something I knew to care about.
    The issue was the power supply... I didn't know it was an issue until I heard the pop and smelled the magic smoke escape a few months down the road.
    Given that it was a special PS, I couldn't just buy a replacement and the OE wouldn't warranty it.
    So for the next few years I ran a separate external PS chasing all the cables back inside as the system slowly died from poor thermals.

    Life less, don't buy non-standard equipment, buy a bigger power supply, add more fans, and make your system quiet.
    Above all else, if you let the magic smoke out, you are boned.
  • She_Devil
    I built my first two computers back to back in 2013 for myself and my boyfriend at the time after having saved months and months to afford the build quality I wanted for them. I still use that computer to this day (though, I recently rebuilt it into a new case with some aesthetic additions) and have built about a dozen other computers for friends/family since. Each time it's always been a fun process, fine tuning a build for someone and what they need or intend to use it for is one of my favorite things aside from actually building it.

    I've always put off upgrading my own PC since I'm cheap and it has always done what I needed it to do. "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" - that whole thing. And it sure has been a champ all of these years. It's only been recently in the last couple of years that it has struggled at all with games or programs.. Plus it's almost sentimental being my first build ever. Now that my build is definitely what one would call "dated", I finally sucked it up and began my newest build.

    It was actually really exciting to finally be building a new computer for ME instead of for someone else, and really go all out with it and with the budget. I started this build last November, and it's still unfinished. For the first time ever (or at least that I've ever seen in all of these years building) half of the parts I'm looking for are sold out, the other half are marked up in price, and every worthwhile graphics card is out of stock and being scalped lol.

    So.. I have patiently waited, and waited.. and waited. Still waiting.. Grabbing every little piece I could until now. There  have been minimal to no restocks on most things and it seems like a lot of things have been going wrong in my build since. Two cases arrived with deep scratches down the face of the tempered glass. The extension cables I purchased had half of the pins hanging out of every cable when I opened the box. My motherboard's RAM slots are slightly too close to the CPU so my AIO pump doesn't fit quite right without pushing on them. 

    Not quite a horror story, just little things that certainly make this build stand out from the others. I still am excited to finally finish it whenever that time comes. Crossing my fingers for an early restock of the 3080s this year. I am most excited that I will be giving my old PC to my brother so that he can finally start getting into PC games with us.
  • MarcosV406
    Last year when I was building my PC, I had plugged in my 24 pin connector the wrong way and I thought it just wouldn't go in. I then proceeded to jam the plug in, so the pcb with the header snapped off and I had to get a new motherboard. (I was inexperienced and the motherboard was an asus z490-e)
  • Techdreamer
    Techdreamer ✭✭
    First Anniversary Photogenic First Comment
    edited January 2021
    I wanted to share a "moment" I had for a build that I sold to a client law firm. Sometimes I will build RAIDED windows file sharing systems for small offices that need data security and redundancy and not necessarily a windows server. I used to use the microcenter branded external enclosures as a 3rd backup for these computers.

    One Friday afternoon I went to install a new external backup on one of my built systems that was about 3 years old that was located in a small closet that had no light. I was using a small flashlight that was dying (no cell phone with lights at that time had a Palm Treo), and I decided to shutdown their system to clean out all the dust on the inside. When I brought the computer back to the closet and started to plug the power cord, battery ups, key board, mouse, screen and my new external backup drive I turned on the system and "zap", smelled smoke and before I could shutdown the system, it was off. Growing up in a pretty tough neighborhood I had never been frozen with fear, until now.  I was on my hands and knees and I couldn't move. Here is a law firm that could sue me out of existence. I realized that I had plugged the power cord from the external backup into the PS2 port on the file server and fried the board. I mean it was a perfect fit, I thought it was the keyboard, which actually was USB, but the mouse was PS2.

    After what seemed like an eternity I finally got up and walked over calmly to one of the attorneys and stated that I needed to do some major work on their computer and that they would be down for couple hours or more. The attorney said that he was closing early and that I could stay and lock up. I asked if I could just take their system to my office and do I what I had to, and do a better cleaning and come back the next day. "No problem!" he replied. Thank God the RAID was fine and the backups were intact. I rushed to Microcenter and built them a brand new file sharing server and had it running the next day including the database app and remap all drives. So from that point on I never used those back up drive enclosures and removed them from my other clients, I also learned what "frozen with fear" really meant.  
  • Anan
    A day of Joy "Shocked."

    Back from the era of The Sims2 i had a very reliable PC. It was this system i purchased a dedicated graphics card.
    In time i found myself changing out for more ram and adding hard-drives.  The system was a dual core like many of that time.
    While many improvements where being made i felt for what i needed it was able to perform. With life i became a father.
    As grand and unrelated as this sounds highs and lows are very true. For our first Mothers day we felt the integrity of family values to introduce distance relatives to our newborn.

    While visiting family we receive every alert possible. Someone had broke into our apartment.
    As most would expect the house was torn to shreds. Jewelry gone, Finances gone, Electronics gone.
    Well, I would say all electronics were taken however in all the damage was my computer. Kicked over and unresponsive.
    Based on its beige look the people that acted upon this felt not only was it not worth it to take but not worth it to leave alone.
    The event is traumatic let alone being our first mothers day, consoling a crying wife and talking with police officers that are suppose to take note to what was taken while calling me a liar in the process.
    Specifically over owning a Xbox 360 although the Kinect was left along with the original package.

    At that time computer store have been running commercials of this exact situation.
    I wouldn't have felt a need to upgrade if This had not happened. However digital copies of family photos and video are forever lost.
    First thought, Best thought.

    The birth of a child is a great time trial. With this concept i had the time to go back to school and into my career.
    Success achieved i was able to do what i felt was best to provide for my family and give opportunity for my child.
    In making sure i was not being financially responsible i felt building a respectful system could be planned.
    In time The build was complete. This was my first SLI build tucked what i thought was safely behind a living room PC.
    The weekend of its completion with a now running child a family dinner is in progress. Talking with the mother in law.
    Her intrigue is upon this bright flashing system.
    During the conversation i tell her how i had it connected to the TV as it is capable of 4k gaming but may still be sticking out too far as a hazard. While these words are coming out my mouth my daughter runs into the living room knocking the entire desktop off the table to the ground.
  • zaidaraid
    Short story, iv'e waited and saved up to get a pc for about half a year and now all the gpu's are at a substantial price. Now I am considering to go with a GT 1030 or a RX 550 until the pc market goes down.😭 But the RTX 3070 would help me build my first pc as a beginner and I have watched every LTT, BITWIT, and nerd a budget's videos on YT.😤 I know this isn't a horror story but i'm really trying my best to get a graphics card in 2021.😓 ✋🏾
  • wra18th
    I bought all of the components to build a Pentium 233Mhz setup with a Tyan motherboard and 8 gigs of RAM. Had everything new. I powered it up and it and it ran for a few minutes and then the motherboard started smoking. Then the CPU stated smoking. Then the PSU stated smoking. I guess there was something wrong with the motherboard. When I called the vendor for a warranty claim they accused me of overclocking. I had never heard of overclocking before.

    Fortunately, they honored the warranty and replaced everything. But now I wanted to learn about overclocking. And with time I got good at it. But I haven't OC'd anything in 6 or 7 years.
  • i just put in a new aio and as soon as i turned it on it leaked 
  • DrShrapnel
      The summer before last I was upgrading my PC to a full AMD build. Got a great deal at Microcenter for a Ryzen 3600 and 5700XT combo. I'd entered all of my info into PC Parts Picker beforehand and it looked like my 550 Watt PSU was enough to handle the job. After completing the build I was running into an issue where I'd be in the middle of playing a game and BOOM! - it would crash to desktop. Sometimes my entire PC would shut down. Looking online revealed that AMD's drivers were causing a lot of issues for new 5700/5700XT owners. The drivers were awful, but when it was all working, it was a tremendous value for the money. So for a short time I was on the AMD forums as well as Subreddit reading about others having issues with these new GPUs. It was frustrating, but man, I was really happy with the performance for the price. Fix this AMD!

     Eventually the crashing was just too much.  I'd had enough and was going to go back to Nvidia. Microcenter had a 2070 Super in stock, and even though it was a heck of bit pricier than my 5700XT, I wanted stability. So off to Microcenter I went and picked up the 2070 Super. When I arrived home I put it in my PC and WHAM! Big crash and my motherboard had a red light. What in the WideWide World of Sports is goin' on here??
      I didn't know, so I brought my entire PC to Microcenter to get looked at. Turns out I fried my motherboard. *sob*  This dummy didn't stop to think that the 2070 Super required an even larger PSU. So I had to use the savings I had set aside for a future upgrade to buy a new Motherboard and a 750 Watt PSU. Then it hit me...all of that time I thought it was AMD's drivers, and here it was my Motherboard shutting everything down so I didn't damage my system. It just didn't dawn on me because at the time people were having A LOT of issues with AMD's drivers. So lesson learned - don't skimp on the PSU!  

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