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This article provides troubleshooting information on system stability issues caused by an insufficient or faulty power supply unit (PSU).

The contents of this article are organized into the following sections:

  • Power Supply Unit Related Issues and Causes
  • Troubleshooting Tips


Power Supply Unit Related Issues and Causes

The PSU regulates and provides power to internal system components thus, using a known good power supply unit is essential when troubleshooting a system with stability issues. 

A faulty or insufficient PSU may cause system issues, such as:

  • Boot failure
  • Random crash, hang, reboot
  • Display corruption

​These issues usually occur when the PSU:

  • Stops working completely
  • Overheats due to excessive dust and poor ventilation caused by a broken fan
  • No longer outputs the specified wattage
  • Does not meet total system power requirements


Troubleshooting Tips

Depending on the symptom, the following troubleshooting steps can help determine if the issue is related to the PSU.  Note! If you do not feel comfortable with or are unable to remove/replace the PSU on your own, please consult with an expert for assistance.

System does not power on:

  1. Plug the PSU power cable into a known working power outlet.
  2. Swap the PSU power cable with known working cable.
  3. Verify the PSU power cable and internal power adapters are secure connected.
  4. Check the PSU for any damage caused by overheating or excessive wear.
  5. Test the system with known working PSU of equal or greater wattage.

System suffers from crashes, hangs, reboots, and/or display corruption:

  1. Verify that the PSU exceeds the combined system power requirements:
    1. Check the PSU’s rated output wattage which can be found on a label attached to the unit.
    2. Use a power supply/wattage calculator to determine the total wattage requirement of all installed system components and compare it to the rated wattage output of the PSU.

      Note! Some PSU manufacturers provide an online power supply/wattage calculator, for example: Cooler Master, Seasonic, Bequiet.  There are also free 3rd party online utilities for calculating the system’s total wattage requirements, such as: OuterVision® Power Supply Calculator.
  2. Check the PSU fan to ensure that it is operating normally, and there is good air flow through the unit.
    1. If the vents are blocked by dust, use a compressed air duster to safely remove the dust.
  3. Test the system with a known working PSU equal or greater wattage.

For additional troubleshooting tips, please refer to the user manual of the PSU or contact its manufacturer.