A few years back while using Windows XP, I was seeing weird red lines across my monitor, the same happened with Vista. At first I thought it is an issue with my monitor but on further research it was revealed that the graphics card has gone broke.
What happens when your graphic card stops working? Either you will throw it in the trash, save it for ‘old memories’ or sell it on eBay, but it turns out most of them can be fixed by simply heating in the oven.
The small micro-connections between the chip and the board gets fractured over time by constant heating and cooling. By heating it in the oven, they will expand until they reconnect and then upon cooling they will be permanently reconnected again.
Reader Cod3r explains,
The concept behind this method is simple: Reflow Soldering.
Commercial Electric circuit boars are made of SMT IC’s (Surface Mount Technology). These IC’s are soldered on the board by placing a layer of solder on the board, placing the ic’s and then passing the entire thing through a Oven or a hot air blower. The places of electrical contacts get attached, while the rest of the solder melts and flows away.
Over time, these electrical contacts may develop “HairLine Fractures or cracks” that are not visible to the naked eye. If any such crack disconnects a electrical line or a chip’s pin, then errors occur, depending on the place/chip on the board.
Graphic cards, and Laptop Motherboards are very prone to this, because of the stresses they take, but this can happen to any electrical item.
By “Baking” the card in the oven, all u do is to remelt the non-visible solder, in the hope that it would automatically reflow and repair the connection. (its still pure dumb luck, but with an educated style 8) )
Please note that the cooking oven(NOT the microwave oven) has to be preheated at 385F before putting the card in it. Recently, my friend over at MBL forum baked the cards for 10 minutes before taking them out, but the time can vary. According to most users 8 minutes will do the trick.
The procedure requires you to lay an aluminum foil beneath the card so that heat can be reflected, also make sure the card is raised using small aluminum balls. Aluminum foil keeps the oven safe in case anything goes wrong.
You need to disconnect everything from the card and clean the dust before inserting it in the preheated oven. Head over to MBL Forum and Hard Forum for full screenshot tour and details. This method can be applied to fix your Laptop as well by baking it’s motherboard.
Editor’s Notes: This guide is for those who have lost all hope. Do not try it unless you know the risks. Many users in various forums have had success with this method. If you are having any other problem, make sure the drivers are updated and the card is not defected on purchase.
It turns out this method is quite popular, one person has made the whole video guide on YouTube(embedded below).