Are you wondering why your computer won’t start? If your computer won’t start, don’t panic (yet). Here are some troubleshooting steps to take when your computer fails to boot correctly. A computer that suddenly shuts off or has difficulty starting up could have a failing power supply. Check that the computer is plugged into the power point properly and, if that doesn’t work, test the power point with another working device to confirm whether or not there is adequate power. Call us at 800.960.9030.
Computer Won’t Start?
Is your computer not turning on at all? No fans are running, no lights are blinking, and nothing appears on screen? In these cases you probably have a power issue. Let’s discuss some troubleshooting ideas to answer the question, “why is my computer not turning on?”
Unplug your computer and plug it directly into a wall outlet you know is working, rather than a power strip or battery backup that may be failing. Make sure the power switch on the back of your power supply is flipped on, and if the outlet is connected to a light switch, make sure that switch is turned on too.
If you’re using a laptop, make sure your charger is plugged in properly and to the correct port—if it charges via USB-C, only some of the USB ports may actually provide power. A failing power supply can often cause boot problems, even if the fans and lights do turn on. So if the troubleshooting steps in this guide fail you, it might be time to replace your power supply.
Check the Monitor
If the computer sounds like it’s turning on but you don’t see anything on the screen, the computer may be booting and the monitor just isn’t showing an image. Check to make sure your monitor is plugged in (again, try a wall outlet instead of a power strip), turned on, and set to the right input using the buttons on the side or bottom. You’ll also want to make sure the cable connecting your monitor to your PC hasn’t come loose.
If you’re using a laptop, this may sound silly, but make sure the brightness is turned up. I’ve had multiple people ask me for help with a computer that won’t start, only to find the brightness was turned all the way down causing a black screen.
If these fixes don’t help, try plugging your PC into another monitor if you have one—or even a TV—and see if Windows shows up there. If it does, your monitor may be dead, and you need to buy a new one.
Does it Beep?
When your computer boots, it may make a beeping sound—usually a single beep means everything is A-okay. But if the computer is having trouble starting up, it may make a series of beeps (kind of like Morse code) that tell you what’s wrong.
Check the manual for your PC (or the PC’s motherboard, if you built it yourself) and figure out what the beeps mean. If you don’t have your manual, you can probably find it on the manufacturer’s website.
If your computer doesn’t beep at all, you might be out of luck—though some desktop PCs may have a header on the motherboard where you can install a cheap speaker, or might even have a digital display with a numerical code that corresponds to an error message.
Other Trouble Shooting Steps When Computer Won’t Start
- Unplug unnecessary USB drives
- Reseat the Hardware Inside
- Explore the BIOS
- Scan for Viruses
- Boot Into Safe Mode
- Roll back to the previous Windows version
- Check Your Hard Drive for Corruption
- Repair a Busted Bootloader
- Test the Drive in Another PC and Pray