Does your PC keep rebooting when you're gaming? It's annoying and an inconvenience. Most gaming PCs will act up just when you're about to crack that level that's been keeping you up at night, or right before you save your progress.
Regardless of the timing, the PC should never reboot when you’re gaming or using the PC for other functions. If this is happening, there could be something wrong. The sooner you find out what it is, the sooner you get back to uninterrupted gaming.
There are a couple of things that could be wrong with the PC. You have to troubleshoot one after the other because each problem will have a unique fix.
Why not also read: What to look for in a Gaming PC.
A possible virus
This could be a long shot. But, if you don't have an updated antivirus installed, it's probably causing the problem.
For gamers that use their PCs solely for gaming, it’s possible that the problem happens every time. But, because you only use the PC for gaming, you relate the problem to gaming.
Luckily, the fix for this is quite simple. All you need to do is purchase an antivirus and make sure it's updated. Everything should function smoothly after that.
The Power Supply Unit
If other programs run fine on the PC, the power supply might be shortchanging the graphics card by supplying it with low power.
For new GPUs, your PSU should have a 500-watt rating. Anything lower than this will give you problems. You can check the power requirements on the graphic card's specs and compare them with the specs on the PSU.
If you run a high-quality set up with all the bells and whistles, you might need a heftier PSU than what’s listed on the graphics cards.
If the unit is fine, you can try to diagnose the problem using a power supply tester or a multimeter. However, you should never open a PSU even when it is unplugged. It stores charge and can be dangerous even when it's not connected to a power source.
If you suspect the PSU has a problem, have an expert look at it. If your fears are confirmed, you should consider replacing the unit. Luckily, it’s not that expensive, but, make sure you get the right replacement to avoid problems going forward.
Your PC could also be rebooting on its own because of overheating. Gaming requires the computer to be at its best performance. The components can generate quite a bit of heat trying to keep up with the demands of the game.
If the CPU becomes too hot, the PC will shut itself down to prevent damages. To help diagnose these, there are free applications you can download that will monitor the temperatures of the different cores of the CPU.
After installing your preferred app, re-run the game and see how high the temperature goes. If it gets anywhere over 90 degrees, you have found the culprit.
A gaming CPU works in the range of 30 – 65 degrees and never strays too far away from 70 degrees. To remedy the problem, do a clean-up of the CPU using an air blower or a compressed air and focus on the fans.
Make sure the fans are spinning correctly, and there are no obstructions close to the vents when positioning the PC. If the PC continues to overheat, you need to reseat or replace the CPU cooler. You might need an experienced hand to help you with this. But whatever you do, don’t remove the heatsink. If you do, you have to remove the thermal paste used and apply a fresh coat.
These are some of the most common problems that could be causing the PC to reboot every time you’re gaming. There is one other problem even though rare that you might consider in case you try all of these and everything checks out.
Sometimes, if you have a defective RAM, it could cause the PC to reboot. Again, this is not common but it can happen. Giving it a quick check just to rule it out won’t hurt.
If you're Gaming PC is old, slow and just not making the cut anymore, take a look at the variety of Gaming PCs we have here at Fierce PC, including Gaming Laptops.