How to Install a Motherboard?

by Arslan Ashraf

How to Install a Motherboard?

You want to install a motherboard inside your computer but are worried you’ll damage it. Although a motherboard is an extremely fragile and sensitive PC component, you shouldn’t be afraid to install it. I have installed numerous motherboards on various PCs. It’s pretty simple and you just need to follow a bunch of steps to get the job done. In this article, I’ll describe the simplest method for establishing a motherboard inside your computer without even scratching it.

The motherboard serves as the foundation of your desktop computer. Because all of your components plug into the motherboard, ensuring proper installation is the first step in building your computer or upgrading an old one. If you are not careful here you might experience problems later. It’s pretty straightforward if you have the proper guidance and equipment. Continue reading to learn how to install a motherboard in your computer case in just a few minutes.

How to Install a Motherboard in a Computer Correctly

The most thorough yet simplest way for installing a motherboard in a computer is the one I’ll demonstrate next.

Step 1: Put Your Tools Together

The outcome of thorough planning is always a sound installation. Installing the motherboard inside the PC requires careful preparation, just like with all other necessities in life. Using the right tools to help you through the process and make things simpler for you is part of doing the required preparation. These tools consist of:

  1.  Magnetic-tipped Philips head screwdriver
  1. On the motherboard, a pair of needle-nose pliers for regaining screws fell.
  1. Wristband for non-conductive installations that is anti-static
  1. A cutter or knife to cut the box open. 

Step 2: Unbox your motherboard

It’s time to remove the motherboard from its protective box once you have all the tools required to finish this process. A collection of documents and, in some situations, a CD drive will be contained inside the box. Grab the motherboard user manual; we’ll need it to assemble the motherboard inside the computer. Therefore, store the user manual in a secure location before removing the motherboard and placing it on top of the motherboard box. Make sure the manual is safe because you’ll need it.

Step 3: Calculate the I/O Shield

The I/O shield, which is sometimes known as the backplate, is a metal plate with cutouts that resemble the design of the motherboard’s rear ports. While the I/O shield is pre-installed on a few high-end motherboards, for the vast majority, you must install the I/O yourself in the PC case. However, you should measure an I/O shield from edge to edge before installing it. Relate the I/O shield measuring results to the case opening. If either of them is different from the other, an adjustment is needed.

Step 4: Customize the I/O shield

There must be some adjustments performed if the I/O shield’s dimensions do not match the PC case’s aperture. To align the I/O shield with the PC casing, clip or trim any extra metal. The shape is the same. Slits could be present between several USB ports or other ports on an I/O shield. It would be ideal if you removed those extraneous portions. It is best that when purchasing the motherboard you check your pc casing and get the most suitable one. Then you could skip this step.

Step 5: Plug in the I/O Shield

Your I/O shield is ready to be installed in the motherboard once you’ve made the necessary changes. Push the I/O shield into the PC case after correctly aligning it with the opening. Don’t grip the I/O shield by the edge as it may have sharp corners, otherwise, you run the danger of cutting your finger. Put your thumb and index finger on the I/O shield’s central portion and press it in. You’ve correctly put the I/O shield into the casing if it snaps into place tightly. Skip this step if your motherboard already has an attached I/O shield.

Step 6: Connect the Motherboard’s Attached Components.

After the I/O shield has been installed, the motherboard must now have the CPU, RAM, and CPU cooler installed before being placed into the PC case. It is far more convenient to install these components now than later. By releasing the pin holding the CPU socket’s plastic cover, we can first install the CPU. After the pin has been taken out, insert the CPU into the motherboard’s CPU socket. You must correctly match the CPU’s corner with an arrow going in the same direction.

Install the CPU cooler once the CPU is installed in the motherboard. It is typical to attach the baseplate to the motherboard’s rear before screwing in the CPU cooler on top of it when installing a CPU cooler. The easiest phase is placing the RAM. Push the RAM in after releasing the two clips holding it in place. Make sure the motherboard pin and the RAM pin are lined up. The RAM should fit into the RAM slot with an audible click if you have appropriately oriented it.

Step 7: Check the location of the motherboard attachments

Our motherboard is prepared to be placed inside the casing once the I/O shield has been taken care of. However, installing the motherboard inside the computer requires more than merely screwing the motherboard into the casing. Don’t worry; we will get to that step. But first, we need to look at the area where the motherboard enters the chassis. Having a marker or other marking tool nearby is quite helpful for marking the location where the motherboard screws line up with the case.

Step 8: Place the Screw Standoffs

Install the motherboard standoff screws on that portion of the case after making notes or determining where the motherboard screw holes line up with the case holes. The motherboard can sit a few millimeters higher than the case metal sheet when it is inserted inside the case thanks to the standoff screw, which is essentially a tall screw attached to the case. While some PC cases have standoff screws already attached, in most cases you will need to install the standoffs yourself.

Step 9: Put the Motherboard in the Case by Sliding It

The motherboard standoff screws have been placed, therefore it’s time for the component you were all most anticipating. Yes, we’ll put the motherboard inside the case after that. Start by aligning the motherboard ports with the I/O shield that we just placed in the previous steps to quickly and accurately align the motherboard within the PC chassis. Push the motherboard in slowly and allow it to glide into position once the ports are lined up. This technique should pretty precisely align the motherboard.

Step 10: Install the Motherboard by Screwing It In.

Get your screwdriver and screws out after the motherboard has been placed inside the casing. Secure the central screw first. Next, tighten all of the exterior screws in a crisscross fashion. You must be careful when tightening the screws to avoid damaging the motherboard’s sensitive PCB. Give the motherboard a small shake after all the screws are in place to check that it will remain in a positive state. If you see that the motherboard is loose repeat the previous steps until that doesn’t happen.

Step 11: Attach the Motherboards Power Cable

Now that everything is wired up, it’s time to power up our motherboard. The motherboard’s power requirements are met through a 24-pin wire. This cable is the most noticeable since it has the biggest snout. You will need to plug the cable into the motherboard’s 24-pin power header, which is situated below the RAM slots. Give the cable a little push to make sure it is properly seated in the groove after it has been placed there. Once that is done you are ready to move on to the next step.

Step 12: Plug In The Remaining Cables

We have plugged in the motherboard wire, but to finish the installation, we must also plug in the backup power cable. The CPU of the computer receives voltage from this power cable. Typically, this connection has 6 to 8 pins, depending on the CPU in your computer. This cable will typically have the word CPU written on it to make identification simple. The port where this cable must be plugged in is situated near the CPU socket at the top of the motherboard. We are ready to install the GPU now. 

Step 13: Plug In Your GPU

once the CPU and ATX power cords have been connected. The GPU should then be mounted on the motherboard. To install the GPU, just release the single pin holding the PCIe x16 slot closed. The two case screws next to the GPU slot must also be removed. Push the GPU into the PCIe slot after lining it up with it. There should be an audible click sound as soon as the GPU is installed. Connect the red 6-plus-2 power plug marked PCIe express or VGA to the GPU after it has been installed.

Step 14: Incorporate the SATA cables

The SATA cables that link your storage discs to the motherboard should also be plugged in at this time. The 24-pin power connector is typically next to the motherboard’s SATA port. A SATA port has a small connector with a hollow end and an indent on one side. The cable should easily snap into place if the indent of the cable matches one of the SATA ports. Plug this cable into your hard disks to make them function and be detectable by the motherboard. If it’s an SSD the cable will be a bit different but fairly easy to identify.

Step 15: Affix the fan cables.

When you’ve finished installing your motherboard, there’s nothing worse than realizing you’ve forgotten to connect the fan wires. I, therefore, think you should also install the fan cords. There are 4 pins on the connector that takes the fan cable. It will typically be located near the CPU socket or the PCIe slot on the motherboard’s back. Once you find them simply attach the cable to the slot and your fans should start working. If they do not then check the manual if you have the right slot.

Step 16: Connect the cables on the front panel.

Possibly the hardest task is the last one that needs to be completed. It’s good to move slowly because I have probably gotten this wrong a lot. The front panel buttons and ports that need to be connected to the motherboard are where the front panel wires come from. These consist of cables for power, reset, audio, USB, and other devices. Under the final PCIe slot on the motherboard’s bottom are the motherboard headers for the front panel connectors. These will get your I/O devices and slots working.

Step 17: Reorganize and correct the cables

Even though you may have finished attaching every wire to the motherboard, it is still crucial to order them. Therefore, in this final step, we will arrange and organize the connections that we just connected to properly install the motherboard on the computer. To keep the cables away from the motherboard, use the cable tie pins that are generally included in the case. You should avoid letting any cables touch the motherboard surface since doing so could short the motherboard. Take your time and focus on one cable at a time.

Conclusion

This concludes our tutorial on mounting a motherboard inside a computer. I hope the approach described in the post was simple for you to comprehend and apply once more. I’d like to underline at this point that a decent motherboard installation demands complexity. Even though they might not appear crucial, the minor details determine whether a motherboard installation is successful or unsuccessful. So if you carefully read this article and know how to install a motherboard you would be qualified to easily install your motherboard saving you time and money.

I want you to focus very hard on steps 10, 11, 12, 13, and 14. This is due to the fact that these actions require connecting connections, and as you may already be aware, even a small error in cable connection can result in serious harm. So if you check the connections repeatedly and follow the procedure with a calm demeanor you’ll be good to go. However, there is no need to worry or be concerned since if you correctly follow the guide, you will undoubtedly get fantastic results. I hope that this article helped you install your motherboard quickly and without much hustle.

Arslan Ashraf

Arslan Ashraf is a tech enthusiast and an experienced technical writer at GamingDairy. He has been writing all types of guides, tutorials, and tips for gamers, developers, and other people who use computers. His way of writing is quite unique: he starts with testing every single piece of Hardware and does a long list of experiments before writing the actual masterpiece. Well, if you have any queries, ensure to connect with him!