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Thread: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

  1. #1
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    Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    Well, to be more accurate, I put a selected part of it in the oven.

    I have a HP Laserjet 2015dn in my office that is used as the main network printer. It's a couple of years old now and it gave pretty good service. It was an absolute joy to install in Ubuntu. Totally plug and play. No issues at all.

    From the beginning, once a month or so, it would seemingly drop off the network. No biggie, I would just unplug and replug the network cable or sometimes power it off and back on and it would be fine for another month.

    Well, over time (about 2 years), it started to do this a few times a month, then once a week and finally several times a day.

    I googled around for some insight and discovered that the main circuit boards on these printers were made in China instead of Japan. They suffered from cold solder joints that give the exact symptoms I was encountering.

    The fix is to "bake" the main PCB in the oven. No kidding! You remove the main board from the left side of the printer and after preheating my toaster oven to 350 degrees F, I placed the board, component side up, on a couple of screws through the mounting holes to act as a standoff, on a cookie sheet and baked it for 9 minutes. It is then removed carefully and allowed to cool for a few hours.

    I figured I had nothing to lose as the printer had become almost unusable anyway.

    Well, after reassembly, it has functioned perfectly for over a month now. Of course it does smell a bit like chocolate chip cookies, but I can live with that.

    I have since read that the cold solder joint problem is fairly common and people have been trying this trick on video cards, network cards, etc. with fair success. If it worked fine and became flaky and you are sure it's not a driver issue and you don't mind possibly toasting (literally) the part, it may be worth a try.

    Consider this a last resort on hardware that you would have to replace anyway.

    Disclaimers:
    1) I take no responsibility for your crispy components.
    2) Proceed at your own risk.
    3) Your mileage may vary.
    4) Objects in mirror are closer then they appear.
    5) Honestly, officer, it was a total accident. I was just standing there holding my knife and this guy came running around the corner and ran into the knife. Backwards. Ten times. Honest....

    If anyone else has success (or failure) stories about baking computer components, post them here.
    Using Ubuntu since Warty Warthog (4.10)
    32 bit 5.04>5.10>6.06>6.10>7.04>7.10>8.04>8.10>9.04>9.10
    64 bit 9.10 upgraded to 10.04>10.10>11.04>11.10>12.04>14.04

  2. #2
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    Re: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    Good post!

    I have repaired many cold joints on automotive applications but not in the oven.

  3. #3
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    Re: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    It's become more of a problem with computers (and other stuff) in the past 5 years as manufacturers have moved to lead-free solder. The new solder is stiffer and not as forgiving to thermal cycling, which tends to break the tiny solder joints. I've repaired several items, but I have not tried the toaster oven technique.

    And all this time, I thought recent HP printers were crappy. Instead, they are "half-baked."
    -------------------------------------
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  4. #4
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    Re: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    Awesome post!!!!!!!!

  5. #5
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    Re: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    Quote Originally Posted by mgmiller View Post
    Disclaimers:
    1) I take no responsibility for your crispy components.
    2) Proceed at your own risk.
    3) Your mileage may vary.
    4) Objects in mirror are closer then they appear.
    5) Honestly, officer, it was a total accident. I was just standing there holding my knife and this guy came running around the corner and ran into the knife. Backwards. Ten times. Honest....
    LOL!!! Haha, made my day... but regardless, good post! I wasn't even aware that this was remotely possible!


    Quote Originally Posted by tgalati4 View Post
    And all this time, I thought recent HP printers were crappy. Instead, they are "half-baked."
    Haha, I saw that one coming

  6. #6
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    Re: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    LOL This is funny but I can tell you why it works...See if something is melted on your "Motherboard" when you OVER heat it, It melts back together and works temp again. But funny story anyways.

  7. #7
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    Re: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    Quote Originally Posted by FreymanX View Post
    LOL This is funny but I can tell you why it works...See if something is melted on your "Motherboard" when you OVER heat it, It melts back together and works temp again. But funny story anyways.
    In this case its cold soldered joints becoming brittle due to the new solder compounds with no lead in them. Or as some in the forums where I found this claim, it's from Chinese rather than Japanese manufacture. I suspect it's a little of both.

    In any event, according to the posts there, many people found this to be a "permanent" fix.
    Using Ubuntu since Warty Warthog (4.10)
    32 bit 5.04>5.10>6.06>6.10>7.04>7.10>8.04>8.10>9.04>9.10
    64 bit 9.10 upgraded to 10.04>10.10>11.04>11.10>12.04>14.04

  8. #8
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    Re: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    Now that I think about it, it may be close to 3 months now and the printer is still cooking right along.....
    Using Ubuntu since Warty Warthog (4.10)
    32 bit 5.04>5.10>6.06>6.10>7.04>7.10>8.04>8.10>9.04>9.10
    64 bit 9.10 upgraded to 10.04>10.10>11.04>11.10>12.04>14.04

  9. #9
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    Re: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    Quote Originally Posted by mgmiller View Post
    Now that I think about it, it may be close to 3 months now and the printer is still cooking right along.....
    I guess that it is not time to put a fork in this one. It isn't done yet.

  10. #10
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    Re: Why I put my HP Laserjet 2015dn in the oven

    According to a friend who knows soldering processes well, that baking temp isn't nearly high enough to do any melt/flow. If if were, the board would be well and truly cooked.
    Derek

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