4 Common Computer Motherboard Problems and Solutions

The motherboard is the heart and brains of your computer. It is also a complicated and delicate piece of hardware that impacts everything else in your computer. Motherboard issues can be difficult to troubleshoot, especially for those who are newer to electronics and PC building. Many components are located on the motherboard, so it can be tricky to discern which part is causing the error.

It is possible to address some of the more common motherboard issues at home however. Here are four common motherboard problems and solutions everyone can try:

  1. Check the power

    If your computer doesn’t turn on or if it turns off randomly, you may be experiencing power issues. The well-worn advice of “checking the power” is especially true for motherboards because they require not one, but two power connections. Just because something is plugged in and you see a green power light turn on doesn’t mean that your motherboard is receiving adequate power. Ensure that both the 20-to-24 pin connector and the four-or-eight pin connector hidden away by the processor socket are properly seated (plugged in) and matched with the proper supply cords. Unplugging them and plugging them back in is also worth a try.

  2. Overheating

    Overheating is a common problem that will cause your computer to run slowly, freeze, or crash frequently. In the worst cases, an overheated motherboard or other related components will have to be replaced entirely.

    Start off by powering off the computer and allowing it to cool. Turn off demanding applications, which will reduce the computing power required to run the device. Placing the computer on a hard and flat surface with lots of space around it will also promote airflow, as opposed to placing the computer on carpet or inside a cabinet.

    If the problem persists, try using a blower to clean the computer of dust and dirt, which can trap heat inside your computer. For optimal performance, perform internal cleaning every six months to promote airflow. Attaching an external cooling system to your computer case in order to blow cold air inside can also help prevent your PC from overheating.

  3. Incorrectly installed components

    The motherboard is connected to many other components, such as the video card, processor, and RAM. If improperly installed, they can cause issues. Maybe the computer boots up but there is no picture or video. In some cases, your computer may even fail to power on.

    You can give the video card a push down to ensure it’s secure in its slot. Check that there are no bent pins in the card or the socket. Again, check that all the power cables are securely connected to both the video card and the motherboard. Your RAM sticks should be sitting securely in their slots with the wings fastened securely over each side. Processors are a bit more delicate. Check that yours is lined up correctly with the motherboard.

  4. A short circuit

    Motherboards are filled with capacitors (electrical components that store energy) and connections that route data and power from one place to another. If you look at your computer, you’ll see that your motherboard is installed in a way where it is held up and away from the PC case. This prevents the motherboard from touching other metal components, which could cause a short circuit that would damage the capacitors. A motherboard with a short circuit may have trouble booting up, or may crash randomly. Check your motherboard to ensure that it is installed in a way that prevents it from contacting the case. Capacitor repair however, may be best left to experts since it requires soldering.

    These are some of the more common and straightforward motherboard issues. Learning the basics for how to address and repair motherboard issues can empower you to build and repair your own PC, and maintain optimal performance over a longer period of time. In many cases however, it’s best to leave motherboard repairs to the experts. At CaseMogul, we have expert technicians on hand who can accurately diagnose and repair motherboard and other computer issues. If your computer is having issues, visit us at one of our locations across BC and Alberta and we’d be happy to give you a free consultation.

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