Question about Dell Dimension 8400 PC Desktop

2 Answers

I got the steady Amber light of Death in my dell.

I do not have the system specifications, my problem is that when I turn on my pc it turns on with a steady amber light it's not the first time this happened tome it's about the third, the other 2 times before I just unplugged it disconnected everything and kept connecting it back for hours until it turned on and had no problem for about a week, then when it happened I spent 3 hours disconnecting and connecting it back until it turned on but that same day I got the steady amber light of Death, the thing is when you get the steady amber light of death no diagnostics light turn on, when I turn it on my power supply fans turn on and it glows blue, the motherboard light turns on also I changed the 3v Cmos battery on the motherboard, I checked all usb ports and they were ok no pins were bent, right now I did the same thing I disconnected everything and connected everything back and nothing happened, I tried the password reset jumper. If it was the motherboard would it have turned on the first and second time? If it was the power supply would it have worked before to? I am out of ideas and my patience is wearing thin, any advice would be useful thank you.

Posted by on

  • 2 more comments 
  • arborlon2003 Jun 28, 2009

    when the computer started it said I had a floppy drive error so I turned of the diskette drive in the system set up, I didn't deal with the power options. The last time my computer just froze, when I saw that I couldn't bring up the task manager I turned it off, when I turned it back on I got the steady amber light of Death (that's how people are calling it on the web).

    I will try your solution bluecrash since you are right about the video card it's pretty big, but I have the evga precision program and it tells me how hot the gpu and the cores are even when I am on a program so I do not let it overheat, also I always keep the cover open, at first I thought it could have been to much dust since I keep it open, but I removed all cards from the motherboard also removed the heat/sink so I cloud clean up, and check the motherboard for rust, dust or leaked electrolytes, just found a little bit of dust, and that did not do anything, the computer is 2 years old it was my brother since he wasn't using it he gave it to me, I have only spent 2 weeks with it and it's my first one, so I do not know a lot about computers if I am off on anything I have written here please correct me.

    Bonroe I do not know how can power settings can affect if you would explain I would be grateful.

    Bluecrash I will certainly try your solution and will let you know if it worked, any other advice would be useful.

    Thank you for your time guys.

  • arborlon2003 Jun 29, 2009

    No I do not think it's heating issues i will take it to a repair shop for a diagnostics test.

  • arborlon2003 Jun 30, 2009

    Got my computer to a repair shop the problem was the power supply's -5v cable which means I have to change the power supply, it's not entirely broken, just that cable, the thing is the -5v cable goes into the MB and damages it, if the computer turns on with the cable reading below -5v I have to check my motherboard but it was power supply.

  • Ron Lyons
    Ron Lyons May 11, 2010

    Sounds like you know a little bit about what you are doing. When you got it to come back on did it start normally, or did it give you a system failure warning? You did not mention anything about power settings so I assume you have those set correctly. Hibernation, standby, and such.



2 Answers

  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.


    An expert whose answer got voted for 2 times.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer

As a hardware repair technician at a local university, I have seen the amber power light problem on quite a few Dell computers. If the machine is in warranty, Dell insists the power supply be the first thing replaced, even if it tests ok. If that does not do it, then they send me a new motherboard. Of the dozens of machines that have had this problem, only 1 of them needed a new motherboard. The power supply alone resolved the problem on all the rest. I have found this to be true on out-of-warranty systems as well.

Posted on Jul 05, 2009

  • Level 2:

    An expert who has achieved level 2 by getting 100 points


    An expert that got 5 achievements.


    An expert whose answer got voted for 20 times.


    An expert who has written 20 answers of more than 400 characters.

  • Expert
  • 106 Answers

Sounds like you are having northbridge heating issues. the motherboard has a sensor on it, and if the northbridge gets too hot, it will not let the computer come back on, to protect the cpu.

make sure your fan is running on top of your cpu. unplug the power cable for an hour, then plug it back in. keep your case open for now to let some of the heat out, if you have a floor fan, it might be a good idea to have it near to help circulate the air.

I am guessing you have 9800 model graphics card? These need a lot of space, and give off a lot of heat. Buying a 90$ case that has better circulation could fix all your problems. You will know, if the computer works with the side open.

Do not put your case in your closet. It will get too hot in there.

Posted on Jun 28, 2009


1 Suggested Answer

  • 2 Answers

SOURCE: I have freestanding Series 8 dishwasher. Lately during the filling cycle water hammer is occurring. How can this be resolved

Hi there,
Save hours of searching online or wasting money on unnecessary repairs by talking to a 6YA Expert who can help you resolve this issue over the phone in a minute or two.

Best thing about this new service is that you are never placed on hold and get to talk to real repairmen in the US.

Here's a link to this great service

Good luck!

Posted on Jan 02, 2017

Add Your Answer

Uploading: 0%


Complete. Click "Add" to insert your video. Add



Related Questions:

2 Answers

Power led light is a steady orange but pc will not power up

If the power light is blinking amber, the computer is receiving electrical
power, a device might be malfunctioning or incorrectly installed.
- Remove and then reinstall the memory modules (see "Memory" on
page 112).
- Remove and then reinstall any cards (see "Cards" on page 116).
- Remove and then reinstall the graphics card, if applicable (see "Cards"
on page 116).
• If the power light is steady amber, there may be a power problem or an
internal device malfunction.
- Ensure that all power cables are securely connected to the system
board (see "System Board Components" on page 107).
- Ensure that the main power cable and front panel cable are securely
connected to the system board (see "System Board Components"
Copy and paste this link to your internet browser for your computer's manual.
You can also go to

Jan 08, 2013 | Dell Dimension 4600 PC Desktop

1 Answer

Dimension 3100 turns on the power button has a steady orange light there is also an orange light on motherboard cpu and power suplly fans working but wont bot up

Blinking amber (orange) indicates a problem with the power supply inside the computer. If the system cannot boot and there is a solid amber light, this could indicate a problem with the power connections for the CPU on the system board (see "Power Problems" in your Owner's Manual).

Mar 06, 2011 | Dell Dimension 3100 PC Desktop

1 Answer

When i turn the computer on the power button turns yellow but it don't turn green


1.Blinking or solid amber - "Power Problems"

2. If the power light is steady amber - The computer is receiving
electrical power, but an internal power problem might exist.

3. Ensure that the microprocessor power cable is securely connected to the
system board.

4.If the problem persists, contact Dell.

Dec 28, 2010 | Dell Computers & Internet

1 Answer

When booting the number 2 light is not on...the others light but the computer wont boot up...if you turn it of and on 20 time it will finally work.when it does work the display flickers sometimes.sometimes...

  • If the power light is steady amber, a device might be malfunctioning or incorrectly installed.

    • Remove and then reinstall the memory modules (see Memory).

    • Remove and then reinstall any cards (see Cards).

    • Remove and then reinstall the graphics card, if applicable (see Cards).

    • Ensure that all power cables are securely connected to the system board (see System Board Components).
Sounds like a motherboard failure

Jan 10, 2010 | Dell Dimension E521 (D10E16) PC Desktop

1 Answer

Dell Dimension 2400 with steady amber power light and diagnostic lights of ABC green and D off. What could be the problem?

Steady amber power LED is indicative of a problem with the motherboard. Remove all external connections except power, remove all PCI Cards, ram, disconnect power from all drives, turn on see if power LED is still steady amber. If it is, more than likely the motherboard has a failure. Also check to see if the CPU heatsink is firmly seated (The plastic retainer has been known to fail causing the CPU to overheat)

Oct 04, 2009 | Dell Dimension 2400 PC Desktop

1 Answer

Steady amber Power light

You are looking at a new mother board. I would take it to a certified technician shop, so they can run a stress test on the motherboard for final benidiction.

Aug 13, 2009 | Dell Dimension E510 Dual Core 2.8 Ghz...

2 Answers

Computer will not turn on

  • Blinking Amber/yellow: Initial state of LED at power up.
    Indicates system has power, but the POWER_GOOD signal is not yet active.
    If the hard drive LED is off, it is probable that the power supply needs to be replaced.
    If the hard drive LED is on, it is probable that an onboard regulator or VRM has failed.

Apr 28, 2009 | Dell Dimension 4600 PC Desktop

Not finding what you are looking for?
Dell Dimension 8400 PC Desktop Logo

1,570 people viewed this question

Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Dell Computers & Internet Experts

Les Dickinson
Les Dickinson

Level 3 Expert

18424 Answers

Alun Cox

Level 3 Expert

2678 Answers

Doctor PC
Doctor PC

Level 3 Expert

7733 Answers

Are you a Dell Computer and Internet Expert? Answer questions, earn points and help others

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides