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How To Connect Power Button To Motherboard [Step By Step]

This article will guide you on how to connect the power button to the motherboard so you can start using your build.

This article will provide instructions on connecting the power button to the motherboard. This is a crucial step in building a desktop computer, allowing you to turn the system on and off. By the end of this tutorial, you will better understand how to connect the power button to the motherboard and be well on completing your build.

Key Takeaways

  • The power switch pins on the motherboard can be located using the motherboard’s user manual or by manually searching for them.
  • To connect the power button cable to the motherboard, you must match the labels on the cables with the corresponding connectors on the motherboard and then carefully insert the cables into the correct pins.
  • To ensure the power button is functioning properly, it is important to test it after connecting it to the motherboard.
  • Following proper safety guidelines when working with computer components is essential, including unplugging and taking appropriate precautions to avoid any damage.

Materials Needed

To connect a power button to a motherboard, you will need the following materials:

Power Button Cable

You will need a power button cable to connect a power button to a motherboard. The power button is connected to the motherboard using a thin wire cable. Usually, the motherboard power switch is labelled as “PWR” or “PWR SW” and has two or three wires.


You will need access to the motherboard to locate the power switch pins and make the connection. Before attempting to make any connections, properly install the motherboard in the case and turn it off and unplug it.


Depending on the case, you may need a screwdriver to remove the panel covering the motherboard.

Screw Driver
Screw Driver – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]


A multimeter tests the connection and ensures the power button functions correctly. It is not compulsory, but it can be helpful to have it on hand in case of any issues.

How To Connect The Power Button To Motherboard
Multimeter to test the Connection.

Locating The Motherboard Power Switch Pins

Before connecting the power button to the motherboard, you should locate the power switch pins on the motherboard. Also, you might be interested in learning about how to connect RGB fans to the motherboard. Also, if you have not cleaned your motherboard in a while, now would be the right time to do so. 

Remove The Case Panel

Before accessing the motherboard, you must remove the case panel covering it. Usually, this involves using a screwdriver to remove a few screws.

Locate The Motherboard

Upon removing the panel, the motherboard should become visible. It is a large, flat circuit board with many connectors and components.

GIGABYTE Z790 Motherboard
GIGABYTE Z790 Motherboard – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]

Locate The Front Panel Header

After locating the motherboard, the next task is to find the front panel on the motherboard. There are two ways to find the front panel. Let’s discuss both of them one by one:

  • Using The Motherboards User Manual

To locate the front header on the motherboard using the motherboard’s user manual, you’ll need to follow these steps:

  1. Find the motherboard’s user manual. To find the motherboard’s user manual, you can look for it in the materials that came with the motherboard when you purchased it, or you can search for it online by using the make and model of your motherboard as a reference.
  2. Look for the manual section that covers the motherboard’s layout and connections. This section should include a motherboard diagram with all the various connectors and components labelled.
  3. Look for the label “front header” or “front panel header.” This should be a small group of connectors near the motherboard’s front. The front panel connectors are often labelled with abbreviations such as “PWR,” “RESET,” “HDD LED,” and so on.
  • Manually Searching For Front Panel Header

If you do not have the motherboard’s user manual and need to locate the front header on the motherboard manually, you can try the following steps:

  1. To start, you can try to identify the front of the motherboard. This is usually the side of the motherboard that faces the inside of the computer case and is closest to the front panel connectors (e.g., power button, USB ports, audio jacks) on the case.

  2. Look for a small group of connectors near the motherboard’s front. The front header will often be labelled with a series of abbreviations such as “PWR,” “RESET,” “HDD LED,” and so on. It may also be labelled as the “front panel header” or “front header.”
  3. If you have difficulty finding the front header, look for the connectors connecting to the front panel buttons and indicators on your computer case. These may include the power button, reset button, hard drive activity LED, etc.
  4. Once you have located the front header, you can use the labels on the front panel cables from your case to determine which connectors they should be connected to on the motherboard. When connecting the cables to the motherboard, make sure to align the labels on the cables with the matching connectors on the motherboard.

Also Check: Right Light On A Motherboard

Identify The Power Switch Pins

To identify the power switch pins on the motherboard’s front panel header, you will need to follow these steps:

  1. Refer to the motherboard manual or the manufacturer’s website to determine the pinout of the front panel header. The manual or website should provide a diagram or table showing which pins correspond to functions, such as the power switch, the reset switch, and the power LED.

    How To Connect The Power Button To Motherboard
    The power switch connects to the motherboard via the power switch pins.
  2. You can search for the front panel header on the motherboard to locate the power switch pins. They are usually labelled “PWR_SW” or similar. The power switch pins usually have positive and negative sides. The longer pin is typically the positive or “power” pin, while the shorter pin is the negative or “ground” pin.

Verify The Pin Layout

Different motherboards have different pin layouts, so it is essential to verify that the power button cable you are using is compatible with the power switch pins on your motherboard.

You can check the pin layout in the motherboard manual or by using a multimeter to test the continuity of the pins.

You can check the pin layout in the motherboard manual or by using a multimeter to test the continuity of the pins.

Mark The Pin Layout

To make it easier to connect the power button cable to the power switch pins, you can mark the pin layout on the cable using a permanent marker. This will help you match the wires to the correct pins.

You can check the pin layout in the motherboard manual or by using a multimeter to test the continuity of the pins. Once done, connect the header and pins. 

Also Read: How To Shut Down PC With A Keyboard [All Methods]

Testing And Troubleshooting The Connection

After you have connected the power button to the motherboard, it is essential to test the connection to ensure it is properly connected and functioning. Also, if you just got a new storage device, make sure to read our guide on how to connect an SSD to the motherboard

Reassemble The Case

If you removed the case panel to access the motherboard, reattach it before testing the connection.

Plug In The Power Supply

Connect the power supply to the motherboard and plug it into a wall outlet.

Power Supply
Power Supply – Image Credits [Tech4Gamers]
Also Read: How Long Does The Power Supply Lasts?

Press The Power Button

To turn on the computer, you can press the power button. The computer should start if the power button is properly connected and functioning.

Check The Boot Sequence

As the computer starts up, pay attention to the boot sequence. The computer should go through the usual boot process, including displaying the BIOS screen and loading the operating system. The computer will not start up if the power button is not working.

Check The Power Button LED

Many power buttons have an LED that lights up when the button is pressed. If the power button has an LED, make sure it lights up when the button is pressed.

Check The Motherboard Manual

Check the motherboard manual for troubleshooting tips if the power button is not working or the computer is not starting up correctly. The manual should have information on troubleshooting common issues with the power button.

Also Read: White VGA Light On Motherboard 

Check The Connection

If the power button is still not working, check the connection to ensure the power button cable is securely seated on the power switch pins and that the cable is not damaged or frayed. You should check the pin layout and the wire connections to ensure everything is connected correctly.

Test The Spare Power Button And Cable

If the original power button and cable are not working, try using a spare power button and cable to see if the problem is with the button or the cable. By attempting to turn the computer on the power button, you can determine whether you need to replace the power button, the cable, or both.


In conclusion, connecting a power button to a motherboard is a simple process that requires a few materials and tools. Following the steps outlined in this article, you can easily connect a power button to a motherboard and ensure it is properly functioning. The key is to locate the power switch pins on the motherboard, prepare the power button cable, and make a secure connection to the power switch pins.

Once the connection is made, it is essential to test the power button to ensure it works properly. With the proper tools and knowledge, you can easily connect a power button to a motherboard and get your computer up and running.

Common Questions Answered

Is it dangerous to connect the power button to the motherboard?

As long as you follow proper safety precautions, connecting the power button to the motherboard should be safe.

Can I damage the motherboard or computer if I connect the power button incorrectly?

It can damage the motherboard or computer if the power button is not connected correctly. Follow the instructions carefully and ensure the wires are securely attached to the correct pins.

Can I connect the power button to any motherboard?

Generally, you can connect the power button to any motherboard as long as the power switch is compatible. Some motherboards may require a specific type of power switch, so checking the motherboard’s documentation is essential to ensure compatibility.

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Ali Rashid Khan
Ali Rashid Khan
Ali Rashid Khan is an avid gamer, hardware enthusiast, photographer, and devoted litterateur with a period of experience spanning more than 14 years. Sporting a specialization with regards to the latest tech in flagship phones, gaming laptops, and top-of-the-line PCs, Ali is known for consistently presenting the most detailed objective perspective on all types of gaming products, ranging from the Best Motherboards, CPU Coolers, RAM kits, GPUs, and PSUs amongst numerous other peripherals. When he’s not busy writing, you’ll find Ali meddling with mechanical keyboards, indulging in vehicular racing, or professionally competing worldwide with fellow mind-sport athletes in Scrabble at an international level. Currently speaking, Ali has completed his A-Level GCEs with plans to go into Business Studies, or who knows, perhaps a full-time dedicated technological journalist.


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