Troubleshooting Electronics

Intermittent problems are often due to a loose connection. Once you find the connection, you can simply solder it. But how do you find it?

When the equipment is exposed and running – being careful to avoid shorting anything or shocking yourself, you can tap on components with the eraser end of a pencil. The badly connected component will act up when tapped.

Troubleshooting a printed circuit card is much easier if you isolate the circuts. You can harmlessly cut through a trace with a razor blade, and then solder a wire over it after testing.


Wood Screws

Sometimes you can start wood screws by banging on them with a hammer to make a dent in the wood, and then start turning. This way, you don’t have to drill a pilot hole first.

Another way is to pound a small nail a short way into the place you want to put a screw. Pull the nail out, and the screw will start easily in the hole.

You can lubricate wood screws with oil, paraffin wax, or soap before installing, and they’ll turn much more easily.

Do you have a stripped wood screw hole? Remove the screw, insert a wooden match stick in the hole and break off the match head, and then screw the screw back in. You may need two match sticks for a large hole. Now, the screw should hold fine.