New PC Build? Reuse Parts? You Must Test the PSU | Biden News


PSU, tested and ready to be put into a new build.

Your PSU is the foundation of your PC build, and testing your PSU, whether it’s brand new or recycled from an older build, is easy and inexpensive insurance against future problems.

Why Test Your Electronics Unit?

The obvious answer might be to simply make sure it works, and if it seems to work well, why bother?

The more nuanced answer is that unless your PSU fails to turn on or dramatically cracks, creaks, pops, or completely shuts itself down when it turns on, problems aren’t always immediately obvious.

Signs of failure, however, are not always so obvious. Sometimes the PSU will turn on, and the computer may even boot.

But things like unstable voltage on a certain connection will lead to irregular but persistent problems that are hard to explain, like blue screen of death crashes that only happen under very specific conditions.

If you don’t test your PSU, the source of those problems is almost impossible to detect otherwise.

When and How to Test Your Power Unit

Because of all the phantom problems that stem from an out-of-spec or failed PSU, there are some situations where we recommend testing the PSU by default.

If you’re putting a new PSU in your computer, it’s a perfect time to test it because it’s not even installed yet.

If you’re reusing your existing PSU in a new build, it’s worth testing it to make sure it performs as expected before sacrificing your new build to it.

It is also a good idea to test your power supply and all cables when using a modular power supply when you have new aftermarket cables or if you have unlabeled modular cables in your various parts. Modular cable ports and cabling do not have a universal standard, and you can damage your computer if you use the wrong cables with the wrong power supply.

Finally, if you’ve been tearing your hair out trying to solve a problem with your computer that doesn’t seem to have an actual identifiable solution, it’s probably time to test your PSU.

If you want to test it the simple way, you can do it with a PSU tester. PSU testers are great because they give you extra information and easy peripheral cable tests in a way that a digital multimeter can’t.

If you have a multimeter handy, however, it’s simple to test the electrical connector and the pins on most of the other connectors.

In short, it’s really simple to test a PSU if you know what to do and there’s no good reason not to. Catching a problem with the PSU before you put it in your build or fixing a problem with your existing PSU before it completely fails (and potentially takes other components with it) is a great way to avoid headaches.


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