Big problem, PC will not/will shut off automatically

By Casia01 ยท 4 replies
Dec 1, 2006
  1. Ok, I sure hope someone out here knows where I overlooked... I hope someone can either tell me my conclusion is right or wrong. Please, if I am wrong I hope you can steer me in the right direction.

    Problem: At first the computer would come on, but sudden vibrations like hitting the table or even a load shout would turn it off.
    Friend gave me the computer and showed me what was happening and asked me to fix it. Now all I normally do is search out and destroy viruses and spy ware and run a few reg fix programs. I've built my own computer but I have never come across this problem before

    Here is what I have done so far:

    1. I tested the power supply. First I just put one of mine in his computer and at first thought problem solved until I deliberately bumped the table and poof, the computer shuts down.

    2. Ok, so he is a smoker and this thing is NASTY. So I clean everything with my coffee filter pads (they don't leave any lint or fuzz) are coming back black and dark brown. Very gross. I cleaned the connectors well thinking if this thing is that nasty, well it just might not be getting a good connection, hence the bumping and shutting off. I also checked the capacitors while I was at it and they look great.

    3. There could have been a heat sink problem and the cpu is overheating, kind of explains the accelerated rate of failure. So I get my tube of artic silver 5, compliments of a buddy also baffled by this monster, and go to town. The cpu actually looked like the owner had removed the heatsink before and didn't clean / replace the paste so maybe it was that...

    4. Checked all my cables for shorts and then connectors. Well heck it could be any of them because the second I go to wiggling the mass the shutdown occurs.

    5. oh yeah, also ran a disk check, took the hd out and put in one of my computer to run a good diagnostic on it and it passed with flying colors.

    6. Finished all of the above and go run a test to see if I can get it up in bios long enough to see what the problem is but now the dang thing won't turn on at all.
    I probably just tired but I know I put the darn thing back together right.

    Now I plug it in, the cooling fan for the cpu and the fan in the power supply automatically turn on, the power ind. light on the mb turns on, button doesn't work at all to turn the thing on...

    My conclusion: Button was the friggin' problem the entire time, along with a short in the mother board and now the mb is probably fried. and I need to tell the dude to either get a new motherboard and switch or get a new computer.

    This thing is a Dell p4 running with windows xp home ed.
    100 gig hd, and a puny 135 w powersupply (at least that is what the thing says on the bottom with a max output of 200)

    Please help, at this point I'm getting tired, cranky, and thankful I don't work on a pc assembly line.

    Big thanks, in advance

  2. howard_hopkinso

    howard_hopkinso TS Rookie Posts: 24,177   +19

    Hello and welcome to Techspot.

    Looks like you`ve tried all the right things.

    It has to be either a loose connection/component, a dodgy start switch or a short somewhere.

    You could try taking everything out of the case and building it on a piece of cardboard. That would rule out a short with the case.

    If that doesn`t help, then I agree with your assessment that it`s either the psu or mobo. Try another psu and see if that helps.

    Take a look at this thread HERE, before you replace the PSU.

    Regards Howard :wave: :wave:
  3. Casia01

    Casia01 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 23

    Thanks, I will try that ,but not tonight. Sleep will have to come first before I even think of looking at another part.
  4. tomrca

    tomrca TS Rookie Posts: 1,000

    if i were you , i would first go through a physical elimination of the hardware, ie, data cables, power cables, leads to switches and possibly fuses and their holders. it would appear to me that it may be, loose connections or dry solder joints. check mains connection too.
  5. Casia01

    Casia01 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 23

    Thanks Howard and tomrca, I've done all of the above and it is a shoddy MB. The cpu is still alright, but I trully believe that is luck. The switch is also bad and I tried the alt method of 'cranking' the pc (after I rebuilt it on cardboard) and again with the same results. had a long discussion with the owner and he has decided to buy a new computer, he also said he was going to steer clear of dell for a while. I did inform him that there is still a lot of good parts in this pc, I think he is going to give it to his brother (who owns a Dell p4, same model I believe) to use for spare parts. About the only thing that can be done with it at this point.

    thanks again for your help


    Thanks again
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.

Similar Topics

Add your comment to this article

You need to be a member to leave a comment. Join thousands of tech enthusiasts and participate.
TechSpot Account You may also...