Are all USB-C connections a bit wobbly?
February 18, 2019 6:18 PM   Subscribe

I have 3 different USB-C devices that I plug in to my notebook PC. On all 3 of them, any tiny movement of the cable leads to the connection being dropped. So, for example, every time the USB-C hub cable is touched even lightly, all devices connected to the hub disconnect and then re-connect. So when using my notebook, I have to be extremely careful not to move it at any time. Is this normal? I've never had a similar problem with older USB or micro-USB connections on a range of devices.
posted by bakerybob to Computers & Internet (13 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Not normal, in my experience. USB-C connections are normally at least as robust as other USB connections. Sounds like something's wrong with that port, to me.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 6:22 PM on February 18, 2019 [3 favorites]

Best answer: Not normal. My USB-C connections all feel solid.
posted by rachaelfaith at 6:24 PM on February 18, 2019 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Echoing the others, every one I have feels completely solid.
posted by deezil at 6:39 PM on February 18, 2019 [1 favorite]

It's probably a bad cable connecting the hub to the laptop, or a bad port like AOANLAT said above.

Try systematically swapping all the cables around your various devices and ports and see if you can pinpoint one cable that consistently fails no matter what it's connected to, or one port that consistently fails no matter what cable is connected to it.
posted by glonous keming at 7:10 PM on February 18, 2019

My phone has a poor connection; I've probably abused it. And it is now very fussy about what cables it will accept. I used tape to label every cable because it was so annoying.
posted by theora55 at 7:44 PM on February 18, 2019

I've found that more schmutz collects in the outlets than in micro usbs.
posted by brujita at 7:53 PM on February 18, 2019

Not normal. Try compressed air in all the connections.
posted by AugustWest at 8:15 PM on February 18, 2019

I've had more usb-c cables die in this way than older cables, and it's super annoying. The good news is it's easier to get more cables than it is to try to fix the ports.
posted by bagel at 8:29 PM on February 18, 2019

There's probably a bunch of dust and stuff piled up at the back of the USB port on your PC. Either take a vacuum to it (compressed air will just shove it further back in) or straighten out a staple (not a big one, a standard office staple) and use that to scrape the dust bunnies out of the back of the USB port (do not use anything bigger in diameter than a staple, and only use this trick on USB-C ports). You will be amazed at how much stuff you'll drag out of that port if you've had your device a while.
posted by pdb at 8:59 PM on February 18, 2019 [1 favorite]

ports, not outlet. I've been using a toothpick to clear them
posted by brujita at 8:59 PM on February 18, 2019

Response by poster: Good to know, thanks everybody. The PC is less than a year old and has been like this since the beginning. From your advice, it seems like it's most likely to be a problem with the ports on this PC in particular, rather than with the standard as a whole.
posted by bakerybob at 9:20 PM on February 18, 2019

Seconding the dust thing. I pulled a load of pocket fluff out of my phone's USB-C port, and now cables stop disconnecting randomly.
posted by Eleven at 7:06 AM on February 19, 2019

A bunch of my cheap USB-C devices have had really bad, flaky connectors that act like that, while the decent power cords I've used with my laptop are just fine.
posted by wotsac at 10:44 AM on February 19, 2019

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