Junior Member
Nov 4, 2017
Ok Hi there everyone! I am a brand spankin new member here first time posting! wrote it like a story so read it for entertainment first, secondly to help me out of my predicament!

ill cut to the chase!
I broke one of the outer winding wires on a transformer in my PSU, and want advice on how to source a replacement transformer, or repair/rewind it, or ... fill in the blank...

heres what happened...

recently did an extremely low budget build, my best comp was still single core p4, I thought it would be fun to throw something together cheap or free... it was a lotta fun heres what I got

ECS GF7050vt-m MOBO (free off CL)
Xeon e5450 CPU plus mod sticker (13$ ebay)
4 gb OCZ gold RAM... (9$ ebay)
CNPS 9500 COOLER (free off CL)
EVGA gts460 GPU (free from my brother)
Generic Matx Case with custom air cooling mods (free off CL, well the mods weren't free I sweated a lot)
160gb HDD (free from my step dad)
several Fans and an SATA powered splitter (5$ ebay)
***Dell (Flextronics) f217J 475w psu (12$ off CL)***

minus the CPU RAM MOBO all these parts will hopefully be reused in a more modern build once I consider myself thoroughly in the swing of things! (anyone got any cheap or free 4th gen gear to handmedown ill pay shipping LOL!)

this post concerns the trusty dell psu!

here goes the sad tale of woe that led me here!

comp was working GREAT! it really felt good to see it run considering that I had ridden my trusty road bike literally hundreds of miles over hill and dale getting all these parts for free from different people in the 100 plus degree Austin Texas heat! (to everyone that contributed! thank you so much!) and had also put in much time studying up and modding the case to perfection!

blah blah blah but then I turned it off for the night and.. wait a minute whats that Squealing high pitched electronic noise I hear! I cant sleep like this! even with the power off... if it sounds this bad to me then my dog sleeping over there in the corner must be hearing a fire alarm! plus high pitch is the worst for eardrum health... these thoughts and more did I think...

and this albeit trusty looking PSU that has serious HEFT for a 475w and also man just the right cable lengths not to short not too long Juuuuust right (BTX owns joooooo)... doesn't have the little on off switch like most aftermarket supplies... so I have to unplug it from the wall every damn night to make it be quiet...

this just wont do says I, but I am not spending another dime on this rig... its not that I don't have the dimes just a matter of principle... this was about a month ago now..

so at last after reading up on the dreaded coil whine as well as PSU capacitor safety I tore apart the freshly built rig

blah blah blah located the offending transformer, opened PSU, removed some outer tape layers, applied hot glue a little bit at first then more liberal amounts. reassembling and and listening incrementally.

the PSU was plugged into the MOBO this whole time the coil was not as whiney if it was completely unplugged (this should have rung a bell but I was in the ZONE at the time so to speak)

I did not Apply power to the PC at any point as the cooler was off the CPU

eventually a capacitor on the mobo made a poof sound and became a little swollen when the psu was plugged back into the wall about the 10th time (to listen for changes)

this cap is right above the 24 pin ATX plug and is a 6.3v 470uf... just ordered a replacement tonight!

so I shouldda stopped then and there but I was thinkin hey this hot glue is not doin its job because it is not able to get inside that yellow tape where the coils are! that yellow tape has got to go!

peeled all the hot glue back off and then started to attack the tape layer by layer
picked at it with a tiny screw driver and snapped a few of the thin outer winding wires in the process...

my thought was to varnish the thing with nail polish which was also mentioned in all the coil whine blogs...

these wires were embedded in the outermost tape layer on the bobbin there were probably only 5 or 10 turns here and they were pretty much separated by tape from the first legit set of windings I came upon.
I did not realize they were there/broken until I had peeled back the tape some and felt them in there...

if these are a separate entire winding with a very low count they should be easy enough to rewind... but I have to admit I am a bit confused and don't wanna Fubar the thing any worse until I have been learned...

deep breath.....

so yeah at no point did I power on the computer. I broke the transformer while the psu was unplugged and I did not plug it in after that point so I'm confident that it is still Allll good minus the transformer of course...

my suspicion is that the cap on the mobo was on its way out and that the psu was not ever the culprit to begin with... me dampening the transformer with hot glue only made the bad cap get angry as it was not getting its way on the psu transformer end (its whine had been Dampened!) and finally it gave up the ghost...

this was also all mentioned on the coil whine blogs about bad caps being the root cause but... well I learned my lesson the hard way...

suspect perhaps the 5v usb power is involved since the comp being off did not hush it...


I wanna repair the PSU!

the transformer is labeled thusly with a small clear sticker
rev:c XP 0909

google does not compute, Flextronics website has no 'contact us' link I think they don't deal with end users as a rule and only play in the big leagues...

the transformer has broken windings so I'm not sure if I can test it to determine its characteristics...

it is an 8 pin through hole thing and I do have some pics handy (not sure how to upload)

I am looking specifically for
where to buy an exact replacement to solder in
how to patch the old one up in place if possible (multiple wires snapped on both sides... long shot)
rewinding it from scratch once removed if need be!
advice on how to proceed

*disclaimer* I am not interested in 'replace the psu' this is a learning experience and money/time/danger can be considered factored out

also advice/tips on soldering a new cap through the mobo would be appreciated.

ive soldered a bit here and there but am no pro!

anything helps, it doesn't take much to point me in the right direction and I don't want to waste any more of your time... speed reading is fun!

the psu is currently safely re assemebled and shelved, bought a spare antec ea380d (14.99 goodwill computer works!) as well which I will not install until I replace the capacitor... but yea the Flextronics one ruled! perfect cable lengths and connector count, modded the case to fit its non standard height... it deserves to be fixed and I am sooooo opposed to e-waste (the baby turtles need our help!)


...or is it!

no It actually is the end I was just testing you!

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No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
Well, good luck, and I hope that your life insurance is paid up. Nice knowing you.


Golden Member
Feb 14, 2017
No one likes a smartass , OP
( I have no friends )


Junior Member
Nov 4, 2017
sorry I came across that way! The story of how and why this computer was built is a strange one!

certainly relevant to why I want to fix-not-replace.

that said, I hope any readers can learn from my mistake that you should properly diagnose any similar problems with old/faulty/or failing components and seek expert advice FIRST.

and please do be safe with electrical stuff. It is up there on the list with heights, venomous snakes, poison ivy, fire, cars, things to take very seriously if you are near to them.

hoping for relevant advice please. :)


Oct 9, 1999
Replace the PSU, sourcing a replacement transformer will likely cost you more than a new PSU, so go with the cheaper option and replace the PSU.

Unless you can salvage a transformer from another piece of electronics whos transformer has same stats, in that case swap them out.

Use a solder wick to help you replace the cap, wick out old solder will make it easier to install replacement.


Jan 4, 2013
I also think that trying to replace the transformer would be difficult and expensive unless you got really lucky. The chances of finding one cheap are just so slim as to be non-existent.


Junior Member
Nov 4, 2017
diy solder wick out of old copper wire... Check!

replacement caps, in the mail!

replacement PSU transformer... still lookin

I am wondering how similar the guts of various PSU are.. I mean, they all do roughly the same thing (110/220v AC becomes 12, 5, 3.3v DC)

I have a couple of sub 300w oem psu that are currently installed in older p4 era computers, perhaps a similar transformer could be found in one of them.

(the harvested PSU could be put on a plaque and made into wall art!)

I guess I really need to just study power supply circuitry in general and diagnose what this transformer does step one. there are at least 4 or 5 in this psu and this is the smallest one.

have pics but I guess they need to be uploaded on a 3rd party site to work on here.

is the fact that it made noise when the computer was off any clue as to its purpose?

I have not ruled out rewinding it but an intact replacement part does seem a bit safer given the delicate nature of the computer parts that will be powered by it

**speaking of wall art I'm planning to mount an old big fat gpu on a wood plaque and carve it to say 'all in all you're just another brick on the wall' lol Christmas present for my brother who games.

whaddaya think!?

could work for a PSU plaque as well!

don't hesitate to copycat me on this one and make wall or desk art for all the dear computer obsessed people in your lives! down with e-waste, hooray baby turtles.

p.s. thanks for the help everyone!