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Motherboard Repair

You might need a nerd if…

  • Your computer won’t boot up
  • Something is wrong with your computer, but the problem is unpredictable and changes all the time
  • You need repairs done by a local, qualified person you can trust
Motherboard   Your computer’s motherboard (also referred to as a mainboard) is the big slab of complicated circuitry which forms the main hub of your computer. Everything your computer does, from communicating with peripherals to using memory, to sending a visual signal to your monitor, depends on the motherboard. This article will give you a quick 101 on your computer’s motherboard. You’ll learn what a motherboard is, how to tell if something is wrong with it and how Nerds On Call can help.   If your computer is behaving unpredictably, giving out a burnt plastic smell or refusing to boot altogether, your motherboard might be the culprit. We are the nerds who can make that problem go away! You can call us call us on 1-800-919-6373 or fill out our contact form.   So, let’s dive in.

What on earth is a motherboard, anyway?

I am so glad you asked! At some point, you’ve probably seen one of those cheesy alien movies where the evil alien invasion fleet arrives to conquer Earth. There’s always a mothership. The mothership is the big, gleaming center of operations from which the evil alien leader coordinates its evil plans to enslave us all. Destroy the mothership and you knock out the entire alien invasion. spaceship The motherboard on your computer is just like that, only an evil alien overlord is not living inside it (we hope). Your motherboard is the central hub in your computer which all other devices connect into. Your computer’s video card, its RAM, its processor chips, basically the whole kit and kaboodle of what makes your computer a computer attaches to your motherboard. Just like that evil mothership, if your motherboard fails your whole computer shuts down and you’re left with an expensive paperweight.

Three things you should know about your computer’s motherboard

1. Problems with motherboards are tricky to diagnose and fix

The tricky thing about a motherboard problem is that it can affect many parts of your computer in unusual ways. For this reason, positively identifying the motherboard as the problem typically requires a careful process of elimination. This takes time and a lot of know-how. Similarly, fixing your motherboard is unusually difficult and time-consuming, because everything in your computer needs to be stripped out before the motherboard can be replaced.   Unless you have a well-trained and knowledgeable nerd on the case (like us!) a lot of time can be wasted correctly identifying the motherboard as the problem, let alone fixing it.

2. They’re surprisingly fragile

Remember how that mother of all motherships, the Death Star, was taken out by a simple missile dropped down its ventilation shaft? Motherboards are a bit like that. Because they’re such a complicated assemblage of electronics, all kinds of variables can place it under stress and eventually put it out of action. Motherboard Electrical spikes and surges will typically zap your motherboard first. Pet hair, dust, and other nasties sucked into your computer by your fan will typically damage your motherboard first. Also, motherboards are more prone to manufacturer’s defects, again because they’re so flingin’ flangin’ complicated. The take-home message here is that things go wrong with them more frequently than you might expect.

3. You can’t simply replace your motherboard with any old off-the-shelf substitute

If a motherboard does fail, replacing it is not simply a matter of randomly choosing a new one and hoping for the best (a practice adopted all too often by many cowboy computer repair outfits). A motherboard that is incompatible with your other hardware will wreak havoc on your computer. It will place all kinds of strain on other components, often causing them to fail soon after the new motherboard is installed. It may also require a reformatting of your hard drive, resulting in complete data loss. Installing the wrong motherboard is bad news and to be avoided.   This is why if your computer does have motherboard problems, it’s really important to go with a nerd you can trust. If you are experiencing all kinds of weird computer failures we recommend you talk to us. We know what we’re doing. Just call us at 1-800-919-6373 or fill out our contact form for motherboard repair.

Signs of a motherboard problem

As we mentioned in the last section, it can be quite challenging to correctly identify motherboard failure. All manner of different problems can occur in strange combinations. However, here are a few tells which may indicate that your motherboard is beginning to fail. If you’re seeing a combination of any of the following this is even more compelling evidence of motherboard problems.  
  • Your computer begins to boot up very slowly.
  • Peripherals on your computer (like printers, tablets, and mice) begin to become unreliable. They'll freeze up for a few seconds and then starting again.
  • You begin to see odd behavior on your monitor. This may be in the form of flickering, lines on the screen or unexpected freezes.
  • When you plug a flash drive into your computer’s USB port it sometimes fails to initialize.
  • A burning or melted plastic smell.
  The key thing you may experience as a motherboard begins to fail is a frustrating unpredictability. You may experience one problem, only for it to resolve itself a short while later. Days later a new problem may emerge. This frustrating experience of many things going wrong in unexpected ways is a tell-tale sign that your motherboard is the culprit.  

Motherboard Repair: Nerds On Call can help if your motherboard is fried

While motherboard failure can be a big stress, if you get someone who knows what they’re doing to fix it, the issue suddenly becomes a lot more manageable. Nerds On Call has replaced thousands of motherboards and we know how to do it right. Here’s the Nerds On Call difference:

We always start with a full diagnosis

Rushing in to fix a motherboard without a proper diagnosis is like performing an aerial assault on the Death Star without using the force. It’s just a dumb idea. There’s no point stripping your whole computer down to replace the motherboard if you aren’t 100% certain that your motherboard is the issue! That’s why we begin the process by running a complete batch of diagnostics on your computer. We’ll systematically assess every piece of hardware on your computer and we’ll only recommend the time and expense of motherboard replacement if we know it is necessary. motherboard repair

We’ll make sure your replacement motherboard is compatible with your other hardware

If you go with us, you can have peace of mind that we’ll install the correct hardware for your system. We won’t simply install the hardware we keep in stock and hope for the best. This minimizes your risk of further problems down the line.

Your computer won’t get sent to the other side of the world

Other companies may send your computer away to a separate service facility to be repaired (frequently in China). This adds weeks of extra shipping time to your repair and it greatly increases the risk of additional damage in transit. Visit The Nerds: Having motherboard problems? Visit our Sacramento repair shop to get your motherboard fixed. Or one of our other shop locations across California and Oregon to get your computer fixed today!
Our philosophy at Nerds On Call is that if we say we’ll repair your computer, it will be us who does it. We only work with nerds we’ve personally recruited and who we’d trust with our own equipment. You’ll get your computer back faster and you can have peace of mind that a highly skilled Nerd performed the repair. When it comes to replacing something as critical as your motherboard, you should only work with someone you trust. Nerds On Call is a stalwart band of tech gurus who know computers back to front. We’ll fix your motherboard problems without fuss or delay. Just call us at 1-800-919-6373 or fill out our contact form.
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Questions nerds often hear about Motherboard Repair

If my computer’s motherboard breaks, is it worth repairing the computer?

Yes, unless your computer is really old and you’re ready to upgrade. While motherboard failure is a little more involved to fix than most other hardware, it is quite possible to get a computer up and running with a new motherboard.


My computer is going haywire. Something new is going wrong every day. Help!

This unpredictability is a big red flag that your motherboard may be the failing piece of hardware. The motherboard is the hub which all other hardware connects to. If it is beginning to fail you may notice all kinds of odd things happening.


Can motherboards be fixed?

Yes, they can. A replacement is not always necessary. We will look at the hardware and offer you a repair option if we think it is doable.