What Causes the Motherboard to Fail?

There is a lot to talk about when it comes to computers. These electronic devices have made our lives easier thanks to technological advancements, but when something goes wrong, they urgently require repair. 

What Causes the Motherboard to Fail

Let’s dive into out there what can cause a motherboard to fail. What are the common causes of motherboard failure in 2023? Bad CPU/GPU, accumulation of dust and debris, overheating, and electric spikes are the important reasons for a motherboard to fail. However, physical impacts kill it, as do the normal ageing of motherboards and other hardware components. Furthermore, some branded systems also come faulty from the company. 

So let’s get to the root of what causes the motherboard to fail.

10 Causes That Fail Motherboard

As keyboard repair and replacement costs increase rapidly, motherboard component-level repairs are crucial. Capacitors, BGA chips, and resistors are small components that can be installed cheaply. 

The true challenge is installing them on the motherboard and identifying the problem’s source. Therefore, obtaining the board-level schematics is becoming difficult because manufacturers avoid making the necessary repairs. 

1. Aerosols, Cigarette Smoke, and Perfumes

Remember that if your computer is on, everything in the running air will enter its body. These factors leave behind a sticky residue that makes it easier for dust and other foreign objects to collect there, making removal impossible.

Aerosols, Cigarette Smoke, and Perfumes

In this respect, one of the most well-known causes of motherboard failure and failure of other software components is tar from cigarette smoke. When smoke and dust combine to form a residue inside the software components, your device may become stuck in the middle of work. 

Additionally, various aerosols like perfumes and hair sprays can have a similar effect as cigarette smoke. 

Therefore, if the device is being used in such a filthy environment, it is advisable to regularly clean the inside software of the computer at least once a year to restore the motherboard’s functionality.

2. Electrical Spikes and Tremors

A brief explosion of energy in an electrical circuit is known as a surge or electrical spike. Power service problems outside buildings, power-hungry appliances, or problems with electrical strikes can all contribute to this.

Electrical Spikes and Tremors

Lightning is the primary cause of surge or spike failure in motherboards, and it frequently bypasses surge protectors by going through phone lines, coax cables, and Ethernet ports. 

Additionally, the motherboard damage is primarily caused by a fast change in electric voltage when the computer is turned on. Never forget that motherboards use dependable electrical circuitry. Therefore, connecting your computers to electrical outlets that experience abrupt fluctuations in voltage can damage your computers’ software.  

Therefore, choosing high-quality electrical savers to neutralize the effects is ideal for protecting your computer from electrical spikes. For instance, the finest choices to prevent damage to your motherboards are surge suppressors of the APC brand. 

3. Dust, Pet hair, and Debris

Dust, strange objects, and cat hair are surefire ways to destroy a computer’s motherboard. Due to dust, debris, and grime, I have witnessed numerous laptops, computers, blocked heatsinks, and fans at computer shops. When these items build up within the computer, they obstruct the airflow necessary to keep the device cool while operating. 

Dust, Pet hair, and Debris

However, it can be difficult to prevent dust and debris from getting on your computer’s motherboard because it has to be well-ventilated by maintaining its software and cleaning the inside. Therefore, keeping your computer clean can prevent software components from being directly impacted by dust and particles. 

4. Overheating

The motherboard’s overheating is one of the main causes of motherboard failure. It has several significant components, including a video card and CPU, which generate heat. Assume that the motherboard-connected components do not constantly cool to distribute heat evenly. In that instance, it will result in the motherboard overheating, destroying several other components. 


This explains why working on projects requiring numerous steps over an extended time might negatively affect your laptop’s performance, especially if it was not designed to handle such tasks.

Therefore, ensuring that all cooling fans are functioning correctly and that the device is situated in a well-ventilated area is the best method to avoid this problem.

5. Physical Damage

One cause of motherboard damage is damage in the motherboard to its hardware components. It can be due to many reasons, like improper handling and carelessness. For instance, if your laptop or desktop falls or hits any complex thing, it may damage its motherboard and cause a crack in the motherboard. 

Physical Damage

In this case, the software components touch areas on spaces that need to be made, and so many aspects create incomplete circulations and short-circuiting. 

6. Moisture

Any type of liquid, spilling water or any type of moisture on the motherboard can cause damage to your whole computer components. Normally, the liquids are partial conductors, and entering your laptop’s circuit board will result in a short circuit. 


Moreover, the best motherboard is featured with various sensitive and delicate components, and if the impact with current, whether big or small, goes into the wrong terminal can lead to damage to the motherboard. So the best way to prevent this issue is to keep your device away from any liquid due to the chance of spilling water.

7. Normal Wear and Ageing

More often, the motherboard of your desktop or laptop is damaged due to abnormal wear and tear due to constant use and ageing. Ultimately, your device is stuck in the middle of the tasks due to a limited life span, but in most cases, a motherboard can function well for too many years. 

Normal Wear and Ageing

There are a few efforts to prevent the computer’s hardware from being damaged, like taking care of your device with the utmost attention. 

8. Manufacture Design Defect

The hardware components of computers are designed in mass, so there can be risks of manufacturing defaults could occur. Sometimes the design faults can be due to the not being engineered properly, faulty capacity, or issues due to cooling abilities.

Manufacture Design Defect

While this is rare as it is impossible because manufacturers know very expertly how to install the components, they also offer users a warranty for the repair for constant wear and tear and how long to expect the motherboard to last. 

9. Faulty Seated Memory Module

As that said, the motherboard is a station where all the important components of the computer are connected. However, if all these parts of the laptops are not properly mounted, whether internal or external, it can lead to short-circuiting, damaging the motherboard.

Faulty Seated Memory Module

To prevent the motherboard from having this issue, always counter-check the connections in everything and ensure that these are well seated, especially when you plan to mount a new hardware component in the computer, whether it be a hard drive, new processor, RAM or graphics card.  

10. Incorrect Linkage of Cables

It is very important that for anything connecting to your motherboard, you have to check the proper connections in the terminals. Linkage of the wrong cables and wires in the wrong ports can lead to short-circuiting, thus easily ruining the motherboard.

Incorrect Linkage of Cables

Therefore, working on repairing your motherboard, or cleaning the inner of the device, make sure to connect the correct cables. It is best to follow the instructions given in the user manual while working on the pre-build OEM device.  

What are the two most causes of the motherboard fry

One of the most not discussed issues in the motherboard is the CMOS battery issues, but they play an essential role in the working of the motherboard. The cause of the CMOS battery in your laptop remembers whatever configuration you plan to make on your device, even when no battery is installed on your computer.   

However, the battery is too long-lasting and very durable in most branded laptops. So it can last about 5 to 6 years minimum. Therefore it will not be replaced, your device will malfunction, sometimes it will not be switched on, and drivers will be missing.

What are the two most causes of the motherboard fry

Secondly, the most common reason for issues in a motherboard is due to sudden changes in Voltage.

As a rule of thumb, no electronic device can survive due to sudden changes in the voltage of electric current at any particular level. The instant change in the electric current can ruin the electric circuits in the computer’s hardware. This can cause the motherboard to fry immediately and damage it to a greater extent.

So to prevent this issue in the motherboard, it is ideal to use the power outlet that occurs due to the voltage ups and downs to power up your laptop.

How to  check for Short Circuits for motherboard failure

This problem can be seen in desktops but is very rare in laptops. Whether you buy a new laptop or an assembled one, there are many chances of shortcircuiting if the hardware components need to be appropriately connected.

More times, it happens that loose CPU coolers lead to irreversible damage to motherboards. This is why before assembling your computer’s hardware parts, you should check the faulty connections made in the system.

Can  glitches in the Computer cause malfunctioning of the motherboard

Switching on your PC will start with the normal signs, but when you continue to work, it will freeze the motherboard.  There can be an issue in either hardware or software of the system.

Can the motherboard suddenly fail

If the CPU of your system restarts abnormally, the motherboard stops working. Due to the improper power supply, the system’s processor might start with abnormal signs, as it can be due to the improper attachment of different computer parts inside.  

Frequently Asked Questions

How can a motherboard suddenly stop working?

In a working operating system, it is rare for a high-quality branded motherboard to fail in the middle of the game other than the lighting damage or severe abuse and cause. 

Therefore it is rarely heard that motherboard fails during its working. 

Can the motherboard be repaired?

Yes, the motherboard can be repaired, but it is best to replace the whole of it or buy a new computer instead because it would be the cheaper option. Each damaged motherboard would be repaired by an expert professional in hardware issues with the potential experience and should be done in professional hardware houses.

What are the common problems with motherboards?

The common issues in the motherboard of the computers are the same as CPU issues. These include an error code appearing; the system does not display; the system locking due to dirt and debris; reboots; a window screen death; one or more issues in ports; the memory module failing; and problems in expansion slots.  

Final words

To wrap up, many of what causes the motherboard to fail. From which I have discussed some of the most common ones. Looking for alternatives to the computer can be challenging as repairing services, whether from the company offer or private service providers, can be expensive. 

Furthermore, the repair cost also depends upon the nature of the fault and damage. Taking preventive measures and monitoring the faults would help you to protect against these causes. 

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