Motherboards are the heart and soul of a PC, they are responsible for connecting all the parts of the system. Although motherboards have a great responsibility to handle the system’s memory, drives, and data transfer, they may also have a few problems. As they say, “nothing is perfect”, and every object has an age, after that duration, it starts to deteriorate.
The case is similar to the motherboards, they also have limited ages and after that duration, they can pose multiple problems. Anyway, I have been working on computers since the age of floppy disks and saw a number of changes in this magnificent machine. I have cured a number of systems and a majority of them had almost similar problems. Let’s discuss those issues and ways to troubleshoot common motherboard problems.
Common Motherboard Problems
When it comes to problems, I categorize them into two major classes; primary and solvable problems and complicated problems. In the first class, I add those problems which are solvable without any technological knowledge. Here you may disagree with me on how one can do a task without having prior knowledge. Stay easy, because these problems like no power, overheating, or short circuits normally do not require expertise.
On the other hand, there are a few common problems that require the owner of the motherboard to call for expert assistance. Such problems are known as chipset replacement or board-level repair. These problems occur commonly but you cannot solve them until an expert is along with you. Anyhow, here are a few class A problems and then class B issues. Take a look!
Class A Problems
The first problem people often face is the power issue, in more appropriate words, the loss of power in your motherboard. Imagine you woke up in the morning and were going to send an email to your boss regarding the workload. As you switch on the power button, and click on the “turn on” button you see a blank screen. You check the power socket, test it through an electric meter and find out there is nothing wrong with the socket and screen but the CPU is not working.
The power issue is something that causes a number of problems, meaning one does not know about the problem whether the drive is not working or the RAMs are damaged. Anyhow, if there is a major power issue, your system will not run the fan, and the motherboard will pose a complete blackout.
However, there could be different reasons for no power in which the major one is damaged supply. The power supply connects the main power with the system. In case, PSU cables are damaged from the inside or because of expiring while handling an overload, your system will not work. Here is how you can check them correctly!
- First, turn off the system and ensure that the power supply is not connected to the socket.
- Now slightly detach the PSU from the system.
- Find the 24-pin ATX connector, if you do not know about it, it will be the biggest connector on the system.
- Attach the pins of the multimeter to the connector pins.
- The black probe should be attached to the black wire and the red probe with the yellow wires of the connector.
- The multimeter should have a +5 volts digit on the display.
- Now you are required to repeat these steps with other wires and connectors.
If the multimeter shows a reading, your wires are working and the problem is somewhere else. But if there is no reading then you should understand that the cables are damaged and it is time to replace them. Let’s say the cables are working then one should check if they are loose or if the problem is with the socket. Assemble all the parts properly and try to turn on the system.
Sometimes, the board is overheating or we feel an enormous amount of heat coming out of the case. In such conditions, the problem is with the cooling system of the motherboard. There are very few chances that a motherboard starts generating more heat than usual. So we can take a few measures to solve the problem.
A few reasons that your motherboard is generating more heat; first, it is possible that the overlocking mode is creating a problem. Basically, when one uses a system in the overlocking mode, it consumes more energy and provides peak performance. Mostly, professional gamers play games in the overlock mode as it provides better speed.
It also comes with so many disasters such as the motherboard generating more heat. In case the fan is not working appropriately, the machine can turn off permanently. Therefore, it is highly important to evaluate the condition of the cooling system. But if you do not know how to spot that the system is generating more heat, you cannot troubleshoot the problem.
There are a few indications that may tell you the motherboard is burning. First, if you hear a noise from the fan, that indicates the fan is trying to run faster than usual but it is unable to meet the target speed. Second, if your system crashes often, it is a sign that the system is not getting the required cooling environment. The third and mostly occurred is slow performance. In case the processing speed is slow, you should check the cooling system.
Here are a few measures one should take for enhancing the performance of a cooling system.
- The easiest way to enhance the performance of the cooling system is by cleaning the case. It is possible that the debris and dust particles have covered the body of the system and they stop the proper airflow. It can create a greenhouse effect-like result and increase the heat to a desperate level. So clean the case with a dry piece of cloth.
- Another step you can take for maximizing the cooling effect by checking the ventilation. Sometimes, the airflow such as hot air does not get out nor the cool air comes inside. Instead, the procedure works oppositely. So check that the ventilation is fine and if not then clean the open spots of the case.
The above two problems we discussed in detail are the most common which can be cured by the owner. But there is also a list of problems that happen to our computers on a daily basis. I am mentioning them here to address what kinds of problems you should not touch the board without expert guidance.
- The commonly occurring problem which is hard to deal with is chipset failure. It can occur in case one or more chips or cards malfunction. It can cause slot failure, drive failure, or power off. Another problem I have faced multiple times is CMOS battery failure.
- The component is used for storing BIOS information and if the battery fails, the component is unable to regulate data. In short, you see a blank screen.
- Bad Capacitors are the third most commonly occurring issue. Reasons could be over-temperature or over-voltage exposure. It can also turn your system off.
What are the common causes of motherboard failures?
There is a list of reasons such as dust, improper power, over temperature, damage, or coming underweight.
What are the signs of a bad motherboard?
The bad motherboard will show a blank screen. In case it operates, it will cause window errors.
I have spent almost all of my life with computers, they have a single major demand that “use us with care”. The motherboard is more like a brain or the spirit of the complete system. If it does not work properly, it will never allow other parts to run. Anyhow, I have explained common motherboard problems from classes A and B. I hope you diagnose your system’s faults effortlessly.