Dell Dimension 4600 won't power up {Resolved}
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Thread: Dell Dimension 4600 won't power up {Resolved}

  1. #1
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    Resolved Dell Dimension 4600 won't power up {Resolved}

    I'm helping a friend diagnose a problem with his PC. His Dell Dimension 4600 won't power up. When I take the cover off the case, I can see the green LED lit on the Motherboard. However, when I press the power-on button, absolutely nothing happens (No lights, no fans, no drives spinning)
    What I've tried so far:
    - Verify all the cables are securely in place.
    - Removed all drives and cards.
    - Removed 1 of 2 memory sticks, then switched them.
    - Connected a wire to pins 13 and 14, plugged in power cord, and the power supply fan started spinning.
    - Connected a multimeter to the Power Supply plug, and got readings on Pins 9 and 14 only.

    Now for the strange part, with everything plugged in and just sitting there (while I was working on something else at my desk), the PC acted like it was starting to power-up. The lights/fans/drives all came on for a split second and then went off. After about 10-15 seconds, it repeated. It kept doing this for several minutes until I pressed the power button for about 6 seconds, and then it stayed powered off.

    The problem appeared out of the blue. They shut it down normally on a Friday, went out of town for a couple of days, and when they returned on Sunday... nothing!

    I don't have a spare power supply laying around. I'm willing to buy one if there is a reasonable chance that the power supply is bad. So, what do you think? ... Is it most likely the Power Supply, Motherboard, or something else?
    Thanks,
    Rick
    Last edited by rpoling; October 20th, 2005 at 08:09 PM.

  2. #2
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    If you have, or can borrow, a multimeter, here's how to test a power supply:

    Testing PSU voltages

    Or alternatively you can buy a proper PSU tester, they don't cost much:

    http://www.antec.com/us/productDetails.php?ProdID=77003

  3. #3
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    Testing PSU voltages

    I used the 'Testing PSU voltages' page to show me how to test the PSU.
    I only got readings on Pins 9 and 14. Is that correct, or should I expect readings from the other pins as well?

  4. #4
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    You should get readings on all the pins (except the grounds of course). If you aren't then it looks like it's definitely a dead PSU.


  5. #5
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    You can try this, it sometimes works, unplug the PSU from the power outlet, and let it stand for about 5 minutes, then plug the power cord back in, and try booting the computer. If the computer boots, then your power supply is bad, that is, a capacitor, in the PSU, is not charging, or discharging, normally. If you replace the power supply, have your friend buy a quality power supply, that has a larger wattage output than the old one.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for the quick responses... I'll pick up another power supply tomorrow - I see that Staples has a 300W Antec ATX power supply for $50.

    For what it's worth, it looks like there is a major problem with Dell power supplies:
    http://forums.us.dell.com/supportfor...=4600+power+up

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by rpoling
    For what it's worth, it looks like there is a major problem with Dell power supplies:
    http://forums.us.dell.com/supportfor...=4600+power+up
    Then ask Dell to pay for the part AND LABOUR ... they would charge you if the situation reverses.

  8. #8
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    Good news! I just picked up an Antec power supply at Staples, installed it, and the Dell is up and running!! woohoo!! Thanks to everyone for your help.

  9. #9
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    You're very welcome, I'm glad you got it fixed

  10. #10
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    Smile My Dell 4600 is running again. Thanks!

    I wanted to thank everyone for their help. My Dell 4600 would not power up after being 2 years old. I read this link online and suspected it was the power supply. I bought a Antec 500W power supply at Comp USA since it was on sale for 50$ after rebate. I then tried to test the voltages as suggested on this forum at http://www.ochardware.com/articles/p.../psuvolt2.html. I was disappointed to see that the voltages were all fine. I thought maybe I had too many hard drives connected since I have 3 hard drives (although it worked fine before). I unplugged two of the non OS drives and the computer still did not power up. So then I thought it was the power switch. So I disconnected it and connected it to an ohmeter and the switch worked. So now I thought I was in trouble. I felt it may be the motherboard but the motherboard still had the little green light on which I have some people call the "flea" light. Since I did not want to spend the money on a new motherboard, I decided just to try replacing the power supply anyway since I read somewhere that someone still had the "flea" light on and replacing the power supply worked. It took me about 45 minutes to replace the power supply mainly because the Antec 500W power supply was larger than the original power supply and I had to crowd the wires together to make it fit between the power supply and the back of the CD-ROM. I was so glad when I powered it up and the computer started running. I was just surpised that the old power supply still had the right voltages but still did not work. Anyways, I wanted to thank everyone for their help.

  11. #11
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    Hi bostski, welcome to Virtual Dr

    That's great to hear that we were able to help Thanks for posting and letting us know.

  12. #12
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    Not the power supply?

    I've been researching this problem and found something similar but with a different conclusion at..

    www.pcguide.com/vb/showthread.php?t=45406

    Is it possible that the Dell power supply senses the low mobo battery and the new power supply does not?

    My personal situation is that my Dell 9100 Dimension will not power up but the green mobo light is on. The power supply tested good at CompUSA. I am going to go home today and replace the mobo battery.

    Also www.motherboardpoint.com has another thread with the same problem. The guy tried to disconnect drives, cards, etc. When he disconnected the CPU fan- bingo- everything worked.

    Hope this info helps...

    Mike

  13. #13
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    Welcome to VDr forums .
    Thanks for the info but this thread is 18 months old and is probably already resolved .

  14. #14
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    10/4

    Yes- an old thread, but if we can keep putting related info maybe it will help someone else (like it did me)

  15. #15
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    I know I'm bringing this back from the dead...but I'm trying to fix a friend of mine's computer (Dell 4600). They thought it was stuck by lightning. I found this thread on Dell's forum:
    http://www.dellcommunity.com/support...ending&page=32

    and I happened to have a brand new power supply laying around that I was fixing to build a computer with so I plugged it into the dell and still wouldn't start.

    I used the link supersparks posted to test the power supply with a wire. That worked, the power supply came on. However the computer will still not power on. No lights on the front and no diagnostic leds in the back. The only thing on is the led on the mb showing it's getting power.

    I'm left wondering if it's the motherboard (probably not worth the money to replace). Or the power switch in the front. Is there any way to hotwire the power pins on the mb (thus bypassing the button on the front of the computer)? Thanks!!!

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