I'm building up a nice collection of smoked or otherwise bricked Arduino boards. I would like to save bits that might be useful later. I've desoldered a barrel plug to use when I want to separate the power supply to a motor shield. Is there something I could do with the ATmega328 processor, and how would I verify that it is still functional? Any other bits that you rescue?

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    This isn't a great place for this type of question. But I suggest you start buying DIP package Arduino board and learn how to replace the Atmel processor and program the boot loader into the brand new processor. If you burn out the power regulator (a bit harder to do) you can brush up on your soldering and try replacing them.
    – st2000
    Nov 25, 2019 at 2:07
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    Basically you can re-use any part that you salvaged. Nov 25, 2019 at 8:17

1 Answer 1


You can reuse everything what is not damaged, but it can be tricky to properly desolder multi-pin SMD parts.

It's hard to verify if a processor is still working, but it propably is not anymore if you applied a too high voltage on one of the input pins or drew to much current.

Parts like regulators are always handy. I would skip capacitors and resistors.

But you can try to desolder everything, it will teach you how to use e.g. solder wick properly. This will come handy in the future, if you need to replace parts properly! :)

  • Good, complete answer. As you say, the processor itself is the thing that is most likely to be damaged/destroyed due to putting too much voltage into one of the pins or drawing too much current out of it.
    – Duncan C
    Nov 25, 2019 at 12:11

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