Hook up power supply
This guide was developed to instruct readers on the proper procedures for installing a power supply unit PSU into a desktop computer case. It includes step-by-step instructions with photographs for the physical installation of the PSU into a computer case. As a result, it is generally not possible to buy a replacement power supply and install it into these systems. If your power supply is having problems, you will likely need to contact the manufacturer for repairs.
12V/5V Power Supply Hookup Guide
Join , subscribers and get a daily digest of news, geek trivia, and our feature articles. Choosing the right power supply is essential for making sure your PC runs well. Without an adequate supply of regulated electricity, your desktop might suffer from performance issues, or possibly not boot at all. The amount of power a power supply delivers is measured in watts. They generally provide from around two hundred for the smallest and most efficient machines to over a thousand one kilowatt for the biggest, beefiest gaming and media desktops.
Determining how much power you need is a matter of adding up the power draw from all of your components. Other components also draw power, including hard drives, optical drives, and cooling systems like fans or radiators. These are typically require much lower power, and can usually get away with rough estimates. If you want to estimate your power requirements, look at the specifications of each component in particular.
A margin of error is a handy thing to have, not to mention the fact that having a little extra power gives you room to add more components in the future—like extra storage drives or cooling fans. Just plug in your components and it gives you a recommended wattage. Add a little bit for a safety margin, and you have wattage you need your PSU to deliver. Some ATX-standard power supplies are longer than normal, stretching to eight or ten inches long, but keeping their width and height standardized.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, some cases are too small for even a normal-sized ATX power supply. These power supplied generally top out at around watts, though some more expensive and more powerful units are made. At this size things can get confusing, since some enthusiast Mini-ITX cases can also fit a full-sized ATX power supply for beefy gamer configurations.
At this point, a complete PC replacement might be more practical. The cables that run from your power supply to the various components in your PC generally standardized, but there are three crucial types you want to check for compatibility with your specific machine: Modern storage and optical drives use standardized SATA power connections, and every modern power supply includes them. Case fans typically use 3 or 4 pin plugs, and again, modern power supplies usually come with at least one of these.
Older drives or fans may use a 4-pin Molex connector, with larger pins and a trapezoidal plug. Compliance with the 80 Plus system is indicated by a sticker on the power supply, and usually advertised as a feature on the box or online listing. There are different grades of the 80 Plus sticker: Each higher level indicates a higher point of efficiency, and generally a higher price. Almost all power supplies sold at retail reach the minimum 80 Plus requirement. But those wishing to save some money on their power bills in the long term may want to shop for a higher-rated supply.
Modular power supplies allow the power rails from the PSU to be unplugged both at the component side and on the power supply side. By comparison, a non-modular design has a big bundle of power cables permanently affixed to the steel box of the power supply itself. This makes running the power cables easier, keeps things looking tidier, and helping preserve good air flow in the case.
They can be a handy compromise. If your home or office is particularly susceptible to static electricity, you might also want an anti-static bracelet. Oh, and before you go any further: There are high-power capacitors inside that can injure or kill you if they discharge. Power down your PC, remove all the power and data cables, and then move it to your work area.
On a standard ATX case, these are on the right and left sides, held in place with screws on the back of the computer. Remove these screws two or three on a side , then pull back the access panels and set them aside. If you use a small form factor or other non-standard case, consult the manual. Remove as much of the exterior panels as you can to give yourself maximum access to the interior: Now, identify all of the components plugged into your power supply.
On a standard PC build, this will be: Check from both sides of your PC and multiple angles: If you have to remove anything to get to these plugs, especially data cables, remember their original positions and restore them as you have access. Taking pictures as you go is a great idea. If your power supply is modular, you also can remove the power rails from the back of the power supply housing.
Carefully pull them free of the PC case itself and set them aside. Now turn your attention to the back of the PC. The power supply is held in place with three to five screws that are accessible from the outside of the PC case. Remove them and set them aside. Some case designs differ; if you see more screws in non-standard locations on the power supply, remove them too.
With all the cables unplugged and the retention screws removed, you can now pull the power supply free of the case. Depending on where the power supply is placed top or bottom of the case and what other components are nearby, pulling it out of the case might be easy or might be challenging. Place the new power supply in position in your PC. So if the power supply is mounted at the top of the case, point the exhaust fan up. Secure the power supply to the rear of the PC case with the retention screws, screwing from the outside of the case into the metal housing of the power supply.
If your power supply is modular, plug the cables into their sockets on the back of the supply itself. Now plug the opposite end of the rails into their corresponding components. These components are fairly standardized: You should be able to plug everything in without any further tools. Also, keeping cables as tidy as you can not only looks better, it helps promote good airflow inside your case and makes components easier for you to get to in the future.
If everything looks good, then unplug the external cables, close up the access panels, and screw them into place to get your PC ready for normal operation. Then place it back in its usual spot, and enjoy your new power supply. Image credit: Amazon , Newegg. The Best Tech Newsletter Anywhere. Join , subscribers and get a daily digest of news, comics, trivia, reviews, and more.
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Check out this DIY tutorial explaining how to properly install a power supply unit into a personal computer Close up of power supply being unplugged/plugged in to opened desktop computer Connect Power to Devices. Next, you have to connect the internal power cables from your new power supply to the rest of your computer. Plug the pin power connector.
A good power supply serves as the cornerstone for a low-maintenance and highly reliable computer. But more often than not, boxed, pre-built desktops ship with the cheapest power supplies that meet the criteria of their product warranties. This means that two or three years after buying your computer, you may find yourself with a perfectly functional desktop that one day decides either not to power on or to emit a puff of black smoke. Start by unplugging from the wall all of the cables connected to your computer.
Join , subscribers and get a daily digest of news, geek trivia, and our feature articles. Choosing the right power supply is essential for making sure your PC runs well.
This wikiHow teaches you how to install a power supply for a Windows desktop computer. The power supply is what facilitates the flow of power from an electrical source to the other components of the computer. Keep in mind that if your computer came pre-assembled, you don't need to install the power supply, though you may eventually need to replace it.
My Super PC
Replace your PC's heart: How to install a power supply in your computer
The next step is installing a power supply and hooking up power to the motherboard. Included with your computer power supply should be at least 4 screws, sometimes more. These are what will hold the power supply in place. If it didn't come with screws, borrow a few from the bag of screws that came with the motherboard. You will always end up with extra screws. I put them in a small bag and store them with the rest of the component materials in a small box. Optional If your computer power supply and motherboard came with a 2X ATX power connection, you should connect that now as well. These are higher end CPU's, so most setups will not use this. See label "E" on the motherboard diagram for the location of this connection. This is a good time to verify your pc power supply setting.
There are a lot of different Power Supply connectors out there. Luckily they are designed in such a way that you cannot go wrong when installing them.
There are three connections to be made. There is the 8-pin power connector shown circled in yellow at the top-center of the picture, the pin power connector shown circled in yellow at the bottom-center of the picture, and the 3-pin power supply exhaust fan connector shown circled in yellow at the bottom-left of the picture. Parts List.
SATA Cable: The Beginner’s Guide For How to Choice
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Installing A Power Supply
Check your motherboard box for the following items in addition to the board itself. Tools you need for building a PC: Screwdriver and screws of various sizes. Note the 2 triangle marks, one should be on the bottom-left corner of the socket and the other should be on the top-facing side of the CPU. Make sure the two triangles align. The plastic cover will pop out once the CPU is in place and properly secured with the lever.
Want to know what is SATA cable? You must have seen a SATA cable with the seven-pin connector that connects your hard drive to the motherboard. The same cable is also used for connecting other SSD devices and carrying power to them. The cables are generally thin, and flat the connectors also follow the same design pattern. On the other hand, your whole computer had to be shut down if you wanted to remove a hard drive using PATA cables. And SATA cables are not compatible with some older technology and devices.
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