Knowledge for the World

How to diagnose a PSU (without any tools)

Being able to test your PSU without tools like a multimeter or other voltage reader really saved my butt and I wanted to pass on the knowledge.

In these interests [?]
  • computers
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1

Unplug the computer from the wall

2

Take your computer's case cover off

If you're not used to this, don't worry. Its not a big deal at all.

3

Remove the main connector from the motherboard

This is slightly scarier but only very slightly. There is usually a small clasp on one side that you have to hold open while removing this from your motherboard.

Remove the main connector from the motherboard
4

Plug in a case fan or a hard drive

Some PSU's require at least a small load for this test to work.

Plug in a case fan or a hard drive
5

Bend the paperclip into a U shape

Bend the paperclip into a U shape
6

Bridge the paperclip between the green wire and a ground (usually black) wire

If your PSU is a corsair like mine, then any black wire is a ground wire. This is not dangerous at all, its just basically telling the PSU to power up as soon as its turned on.

Bridge the paperclip between the green wire and a ground (usually black) wire
7

Plug in and power on the PSU

If the PSU fan powers on and starts spinning, then your PSU is most likely good! In my case, my PSU didn't budge so I know its busted and I'll be ordering a replacement.