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My computer won't turn on. Everything's dead.

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  • Computers & ... Master
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1) Check to make sure your surge protector has power. Power On LED light is lit.

2) Check THE receptacle, in the surge protector that the computer is plugged into.
I have had a few bad surge protectors where just THAT receptacle was bad.
"Hmmm, surge protector Power On LED light is lit.
Monitor, printer, and router plugged into the surge protector have power."

Plugged a table lamp into THAT receptacle in the surge protector, that the computer was plugged into, found it to be bad.

3) Perform the test to check whether it is a bad Power On switch, or a bad Power Supply.

The Power On switch is located inside the plastic Power On button.
This is a generic Power On switch (ATX), that I have found fits many computers,

http://www.directron.com/atxswitch.html

The test involves bypassing the Power On switch. Has nothing to do with the Power On switch wires.
A jumper wire is used on your 20, or 24-pin ATX main power cable's connector.

The jumper wire goes from the Soft Power On wire, (Also referred to as PS_ON. It is a Green wire), to ANY Black wire in the main power cable's connector.

Since you didn't post what computer you have, (Computer manufacturer, and Model Number), I have to give you generic information.
It may also be, that there is no direct information available for the computer you have.

1) This is a 20-pin ATX main power cable, and it's connector,

http://www.playtool.com/pages/psuconnectors/connectors.html#atxmain20

2 This is a 24-pin ATX main power cable, and it's connector,

http://www.playtool.com/pages/psuconnectors/connectors.html#atxmain24

[Older computers use the 20-pin ATX main power cable. Later computers needed more power to the motherboard, hence 4 more power wires were added. 24-pin ATX main power cable ]

Computer unplugged from power, observe Anti-Static Precautions.

[ Anti-Static Precautions:
Your body carries Static electricity.
Static will fry out (Short Circuit) the hardware components inside a computer.

Computer on a table, computer unplugged from power, computer case open; TOUCH the metal frame of the open computer case.
This will relieve your body of Static.

While working on your computer your hands, and forearms should occasionally touch the metal frame.
But if you leave your computer in the middle of working on it, be SURE to Touch the metal frame again upon your return ]

If you bypass the Power On switch, and the computer comes on, (Power Supply comes on), you have a bad Power On switch.

If you bypass the Power On switch, and the computer Does Not come on, (Power Supply), you have a bad Power Supply.

The test is to use a jumper wire on the 20, or 24-pin ATX main power cable's connector.
The jumper wire connects from the Soft Power On wire, (Green), to ANY Ground wire. (ALL Black wires are Ground wires)

The 20, or 24-pin ATX main power cable is plugged into the motherboard.
The Power Supply, (Computer), is plugged into power.

Use one end of a jumper wire, to go down into the socket hole with a Green wire, and the other end of the jumper wire to go down into a socket hole, with ANY Black wire.

The jumper wire must go down into the socket hole pretty far.
The jumper wire goes down into the socket hole, right next to the wire that is already in the socket hole.

The jumper wire has to go down in the socket hole far enough, to touch a metal terminal that is on the end of the wire.
I realize that this may look complicated on 'paper', but I'm just being very detailed.

Most use a jumper wire made from a paper clip. The paper clip's diameter is thin enough to slide down into the socket hole, right next to the wire that is already in the socket hole. (And touch the metal terminal at the bottom of the wire)

The paper clip is straightened out, then bent into a U-shape.
Black plastic electrical tape is wound around the middle of the U-shape.
The taped part is what you hold onto.

The voltage for the Soft Power On wire, (Green) is 5 Volts DC.
Two D cell flashlight batteries produce 3 Volts DC.
Just in case you have reservations.

There may be a spark. Warning you in advance.
You may wish to use a glove, on the hand that holds the jumper wire.
Just make a brief contact with the jumper wire. No more than 2 seconds should suffice.

If the Power Supply comes on, you have a bad Power On switch.
If the Power Supply does not come on, you have a bad Power Supply.
No if's, and's, or but's about it.


Tell me the computer manufacturer name, and model number, and we'll see if a compatible Power Supply can be found.
Post in a Comment.

Posted on Oct 06, 2010

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