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Please power down and connect the PCIe power cable: 4 Fixes

Building a computer can seem like a complicated task, but is quite easy when you understand what you’re doing. That said, there are still some difficulties that first-time PC builders might face, especially when dealing with cabling. 

In this article, we’re talking about the “please power down and connect the PCIe power cable” error you might see when you boot your newly-built PC for the first time and giving you four ways to solve the ‘Please power down and connect the PCIe power cable’ issue. 

Also read: Why are my GPU fans not spinning? 7 possible fixes


What causes this PCIe error?

As the name suggests, the error is mainly caused by faulty power connections to your PCIe hardware, usually the graphics card. if you’ve plugged your wires the wrong way or have missed some connections, you can also trigger the ‘Please power down and connect the PCIe power cable’ error. 

Depending on your GPU, you might have 6-pin, 8-pin or even 16-pin PCIe power connections that need to be managed properly. There’s also the PCIe ExpressX16 connector that goes from your GPU to the motherboard and supplies around 75W back to the GPU. Overall, your GPU should have enough power to run itself; otherwise, you’ll see this error.  


How to fix the PCIe power error?

Here are four solutions you can try to fix the ‘Please power down and connect the PCIe power cable’ error.

Check the GPU’s power input

The first thing you should do is check to see if your GPU is getting enough power. You can use tools like HWinfo to monitor your GPU wattage and determine if it’s enough for the graphics card to run properly. 

Your GPU should be getting enough power to function properly.

If the GPU isn’t getting enough power from the motherboard (most modern GPUs won’t), you should run a PCIe cable straight from your GPU to the power supply to see if that solves the problem.


Check the PSU

Next up, check to see if your power supply unit (PSU) is working as it should and is delivering enough power for your GPU, CPU and motherboard to function properly. If either of these components is drawing too much power and you do not have enough headroom on your PSU to handle these situations, you can end up with errors like these.

It’s a good idea to have around 100-150W extra on your PSU after you’ve added the total power consumption of your CPU and GPU, as it’ll help your computer be stable in the case of a power spike or if the PC is running under heavy load. 


Inspect the connections

The next step is to double-check all your connection to ensure everything is properly seated and that none of your cables is damaged. Also, ensure you’ve got the right connectors into each other as a reverse polarity connection, although difficult to make thanks to Molex connectors, can cause permanent damage to your hardware. 

Please power down and connect the PCIe power cable: 4 Fixes
Check to ensure all your cables are connected properly.

Reseat the GPU

Another possible reason for the error is that your GPU isn’t properly seated in the PCIe ExpressX16 slot. An improperly set GPU will neither work nor will it get any power, triggering the ‘Please power down and connect the PCIe power cable’ error you see. 

Also read: How to check CPU, GPU and RAM usage in Windows 11?

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