Serious Dell Inspiron 531S problem

Ok so im doing some repairs for a friend and im trying to figure out exactly whats wrong. The system just turns itself on and off over and over again when i plug it in.
the system is a slimline dell 531S.
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More about serious dell inspiron 531s problem
  1. so far i have checked the thermal paste and reseated the heatsink. and im about to order a new power supply for it.
  2. can anyone help me?
  3. This could be caused by a hundred things, But I always start simple.

    First thing, try resetting the bios, some computers will fall into a loop if it thinks its suppose to be booting from LAN or other hardware thats not present. You can reset the bios by locating the battery on the MB and disconnect the power from the wall , remove battery, wait 20-30 seconds, replace the battery, hook up power.

    Second find where the power button hooks onto the MB and disconnect it, try tripping it manually to see if it is a problem with the switch first.

    More than likely this is not the problem, but like i said, start simple. Second, make sure that none of the wires inside the case have accidentaly rubbed the insulation off on a fan and shorted out, also do a check to make sure a wire is not shorting out on the case somewhere. Next, thing will take a while to do, you are going to have to surgically remove components one at a time, this includes the video card, memory or any other add on cards that you may have and try turning the computer on to see if it may be one of the components causing the PSU to fly its protection switch. Removal of some of these components will stop your computer from booting, naturally, but it will let you see if the PSU continues to run or if it does the continual loop.

    If none of these solutions has given you any relief then you may have a PSU problem. You may have to test it, or if you dont have the lux of a PSU tester, then you can unplug the psu, give it a couple of seconds to bleed off the caps, use a peice of wire to jump the green and black wire on the large MB connector,WARINING(your must have this PSU completely removed from the system, it cannot be attached or connected in any way to any computer components). If the PSU fan runs flawlessly and you have tried all the other troubleshooting items that I have given earlier then you have either a CPU, Mb, or memory issue.

    At this point i would feel comfortable with trying the PSU in another computer to see if it works. If not, then you have the annoying task of deciding if its the MB or CPU. To do this, you would have to remove the CPU and try the mb again, of course the computer wont boot, but if you hook the power to the mb and the psu runs then its your CPU.

    Good luck and happy troubleshooting
  4. ok well i believe its some sort of sensor. If i disconnect all the plugs except my power cable and boot it up then plug in the cables, sometimes it will start up and run for a while. I know its not a PSU problem because i have tried 2 different psu's. All the fans are running properly and nothing is overheating.
  5. Well, if you have confirmed that it isnt the PSU by using multiple supplies, then this only lets us know that the psu isnt failing.
    I have had systems where all it was was a defective fan that made my computer recycle.
    I need a little more information, and you need to perform the steps above to find out what part of your computer is causing this problem, I promise if you follow the steps where i told you to unhook every add-on card, hard drive, fan, cd drive, exc.. exc..., also , disconnect usb devices one at a time too. It will take a while to find out the issue but it is the only way.
  6. I have to rebuttal myself, if you are maken it in to the os then it could be a strew of things. see you have to be very precise when you are asking questions about tech issues, I like to help people but to be honest, the only thing that i know is that your computer reboots constantly but i dont know when, i know now that you have hooked other psu's up to it and it does the same thing. So , in effect you have given me no info and i have attempted to help you, please give me more info.

    when it reboots
    what hardware inside you have
    what is your os
    when this problem started, and have there been any hardware changes since before the thing worked fine.
    have your recently changed any drivers
    i mean, just tell everyone out there everything and they might be able to help you.. being vague and not doing the things that have been recommended and still asking for help is going to keep you broke computers ville
  7. I have this computer too Inspiron 531 Vista Home premium, but the problem with this one is: when i put the mouse over the close button or the minimize it does not work i have to move a little bit to the side and click then it works, is the same sometimes with everything, this is the only problem, i don't know what it is, Any help?
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