Netgear GS605 v2 fix

NetGear GS606 v2 with new capacitors

NetGear GS606 v2 with new capacitors

A few weeks ago we had a serious storm here in the SF Bay area and the power went out for about 5 hours.  It took a few days for me to realize that the internet connection was running pretty slow, so I started trying to trace it.

I’m using Comcast IP service and right out of the cable modem I was getting 21Mbps (using the Speakeasy speed test).  After the first Netgear gigabit switch the bandwidth dropped to about 3.g Mbps and after the second, it dropped less than 1.0 Mbps.  Killin’ me!

So after some Google searching I found that the Netgear GS605 v2 was susceptible to power surges which often happen during or after power outages.  The problem is apparently in the poor quality capacitors used.  Once replaced, they are back to full force with less than $10 worth of parts and about 20 minutes.  Here’s how I replaced the capacitors.

Tools, parts:

  • Soldering Iron
  • Solder Sucker
  • Torx Screwdriver (T8)
  • 2 x 1000 uF 10V, 1 x 470 uF 25V capacitors

Open it up:

On the bottom there are some rubber feet that can be peeled back to reveal tiny torx head screws (from my set I used a T8).  Unscrew the 4 screws.  The PC board is not secured further, so when you remove the back, you can jiggle the PCB and it will come out as a single unit.

Removing the capacitors:

On the PCB you can see 4 capacitors:

  • 2 x 1000 uF, 10V
  • 1 x 470 uF, 25V
  • 1 x 100uF, 16V (looks like part of the power regulator, I did not replace)

To remove the capacitors, I first tried using one of those solder sucker tools but I think my soldering iron it not getting hot enough.  I basically put some side pressure on the exposed post oposite the capacitor side of the PCB and when the solder melted, the capacitor slipped out at an angle.  Doing the same on the other post released the capacitor.  I removed the 2 1000 uF caps and the 470 uF cap.

Replacing:

I went to Radio Shack and purchased:

  • 2 x 1000 uF, 35V – $1.79 ea.
  • 1 x 470 uF, 35V – $1.49 ea

The replacements from Radio Shack were their generic versions, bigger in size and higher in rated voltage but I wanted to get it done and not wait a few days for an online order.

Because the new capacitors were so large, I had to mount them sideways. on the PCB.  This is generally straight forward if you pre-bend the leads.  Put the cap in place and with needle nose pliers, pre-bend at the appropriate lengths.  The 1000 uF cap closest to the edge needed to be bent with the leads in a slightly overlapping form, but once you get in there it should be obvious.  Here’s what it looked like.

NetGear GS606 v2 with new capacitors, close up

NetGear GS606 v2 with new capacitors, close up

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  1. #1 by Michael on 07/14/2011 - 7:28 am

    Thanks a lot for this information. I have had the same problem with my GS 605. After I read about your successful fix, I changed the both 1000 uF capacitors and my switch was running again.

    Greats from Germany

    Michael

  2. #2 by Chris Jefferies on 07/15/2011 - 2:34 pm

    Yeah. Another device saved from the trash heap.

    Glad it helped, Michael.

  3. #3 by Martin on 06/02/2012 - 6:13 am

    Thanks for taking the time to make this article – another GS605 saved ;)

  4. #4 by Jon on 08/25/2012 - 11:53 am

    Yep, worked for me too – I have another 3 similar-looking Netgear devices, and plenty of left-over caps for when they go!
    Thanks!

  5. #5 by Charly86 on 10/07/2012 - 2:05 pm

    Hello,

    Yeeeees, just changed the 2 1000uF (the brown) the 470uF was black and seemed to be good
    my GS608 V2 came back to life
    thanks

  6. #6 by Stephen Edworthy on 10/24/2012 - 11:49 am

    Thanks for the advise, ordered up the Cap’s and going to attempt to salvage one of my 3 GS605 v2’s. The others are all fine and have been for about 4-5 years now.

  7. #7 by Safri on 03/09/2013 - 6:29 am

    Thanks, very helpful. It was hard to remove the old capacitors so I had to use my Dremel multitool to open the holes in the PCB. But the new ones fitted in perfectly and the device is working well again.
    Greetz from The Netherlands

  8. #8 by jdryyz on 04/12/2013 - 7:17 am

    Well I am probably the first to report that my problem has returned after the repair. I used two 1000uF 16V and one 470uF 25V caps that I found at Fry’s electronics back in August 2011. Earlier this month, I started noticing the network performance drop again. I was kinda hoping it was my 8 port switch, but it ended up being the 5 port one I repaired. Visually, the caps look good (no leakage) so I’m not sure what went wrong.

    • #9 by Chris Jefferies on 04/12/2013 - 10:03 pm

      You are indeed the first. Thanks for letting us know.

      What I’ve learned is that most of these devices have failed due to voltage surges sometimes, amazingly, created by thunder storms. I suspect the one you repaired has suffered another transient surge and did not fail due to some failure of your repair work.

      The one I repaired is happily still working.

      • #10 by jdryyz on 04/13/2013 - 12:12 pm

        As it turns out, it may have been my repair work (or lousy components) that failed the second time. Because there was already a repair made that lasted almost two years, I decided I was going to just replace the switch this time. The GS605 is still available, although now it is “v4″. I mademy purchase and dropped it right in place of the GS605 v2. This is chained between another GS605 at the beginning of my network and a GS680 at the end. At first it appeared full network performance was restored when I did some simple file copying. But then I noticed my media player (100Mbps only) still showed signs of stuttering during playback. I then noticed other, more demanding, network tasks (screen sharing) were suffering as well. Could it be I just got a bad unit? Perhaps, but I was also concerned there could be some compatibility problem with v2 and v4 switches. I wasn’t interested in spending too much time troubleshooting it so I went out and purchased some more replacement capacitors. This time, I was able to get ones that all matched in values of the originals. I think I did a better soldering job this time around also. After the original GS605 was returned to the chain, all is well again! GS605 v4 returned for a refund. :)

  9. #11 by DARKFiB3R on 04/16/2013 - 5:54 am

    Thanks for the info.

    I’ve got the caps ordered, will report back.

  10. #12 by jdryyz on 04/16/2013 - 12:04 pm

    Welp, looks like my second GS605 v2 is failing. Time to get some more caps. I will get double the amount this time to cover my GS608 as well. Chances are good, it seems, that its number will come up also.

  11. #13 by DARKFiB3R on 04/19/2013 - 8:38 am

    Worked a treat. Thanks again :D :D :D :D

  12. #14 by lukeab on 04/22/2013 - 3:36 am

    Thanks so much for this post.. I diagnosed the switch in my home lan by going through the 3 gs605 v2’s i have from an old office install, and reproducing the same reduced performance on each. I was getting about 300kbytes/s transfers in both scp and cifs shares.

    I then pop’d in a cheepy offbrand maplins Gbit switch I had bought for my mums house 2 years ago that i now had spare. It worked a treat. So i have to dig up my soldering Iron and order up a batch of the capacitors to try this out and might have functional switches to use/sell on if I or someone else needs em down the line :)

    Good on you Chris,, like you say, saving on devices going in to landfill. it’s worth saving them.

  13. #15 by Safri on 08/03/2013 - 4:40 am

    4.5 month after I repaired mine with exact the same capacity caps, the problem returned. After an in-house power failure, the network speed dropped again to unbearable levels.
    So I decided to ditch my Netgear and ordered a D-Link DGS-1005D switch instead. It got good reviews online and is using less power. And it’s almost half the price of the Netgear…

    • #16 by Jon on 08/03/2013 - 7:46 am

      Ha, I just replaced my Netgear with a DGS-1008D (I needed a couple of extra ports, but the Netgear was beginning to fail again). It actually runs COLD, along with its mains adapter so I reckon it’s saving me at least 5W… which means about £6 per year!

  14. #17 by Steve C. on 11/12/2013 - 1:24 am

    Great write up thank you. Just a small point that may have gone unnoticed. The original caps are 105c rating and must be replaced with a similar type. 85c is too low given that the original ones had expired. Also since the caps are smoothing an output from a switch mode regulator it is advisable to use low ESR caps. If not then the internal self heating due to the ESR will reduce their lifespan also.

    RS Components part 768-3832 would seem suitable.

    Cheers

    Steve.

    • #18 by Chris Jefferies on 11/12/2013 - 8:12 pm

      Thanks for the update, Steve.

      • #19 by jm on 07/11/2014 - 4:17 am

        A caveat about capacitors is that the caps you’ve used are larger voltage, hence larger cans than the original, the esr would be lower at the expense of a few uf.

        It was once said that “low esr” differs from manufacturer to manufacturer in that one manufacturer’s capacitors low esr model can be another manufacturer’s regular model, etc. The only way to know for sure is to check the original manufacturer’s specs against all other manufacturer’s specs.

        For a long time, many commodity power supplies did not even use “low esr” caps in them from the factory. Capacitor quality varies greatly, so really nice regular ones will outlast crap quality “low esr” types. So it can quite difficult to pin down what actually is causing the failure.

  15. #20 by Darrell W. on 01/10/2014 - 9:38 am

    http://www.alliedelec.com/search/productdetail.aspx?SKU=70187451

    https://www.alliedelec.com/search/productdetail.aspx?SKU=70187450

    These are on sale right now and rated up to 125c, with ESR very close to the 105c alternatives. Maybe Steve C. can chime in if they are still appropriate?

  16. #21 by Nicolas Lambert on 01/13/2014 - 7:35 am

    Thanks to you Chris ! My GS608v2 works now like a charm ! Here is some photo : http://jmp.sh/b/xfSaezrgadG8W1jSZEQ9

  17. #22 by jm on 07/11/2014 - 2:35 am

    Why would surges and power outages kill just capacitors? I would expect more damage. I suspect the capacitors were marginal, and turning off the power allowed them to cool. They will then appear worse until they warm up again. This is because the viscosity of the electrolyte is reduced when capacitors are warm. When capacitors go high ESR, they self-heat so this would run them warmer than they otherwise would, thus amplifying this effect.

    I don’t believe the “power surge killed my router” layman’s explanation as it usually turns out to be some other fault. Most power supplies are tightly regulated and generally don’t let surges through. Many will include MOVs in their design, increasing protection. There is usually another regulator in the router itself, which would make it less likely power surges to get though.

    I think you have an input filter cap, and two output filters for two voltages. The toroidal transformers indicate switching regulators. The input filter cap wouldn’t have much work to do as the power supply is already filtered. When the filter caps fail, it reduces the avarage voltage, and increases ripple. It starves the router of power and the high ripple may cause glitches like locking up. In replacing the capacitors, since they are used as reservoir here, the value doesn’t set the voltage, so the wrong value won’t screw up the circuit. Only if it’s too small it may not remove all of the switching ripple. So if somebody doesn’t have the exact value, just keep searching until you find a bigger one.

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