How To Tell If Your CPU Is Dead?

One of the initial few ways how to tell if your CPU is dead would be just after switching it on. The motherboard could beep for a while to indicate a certain problem. The beep sound at the beginning has some meanings such as a single beep sound may indicate that your GPU is having issues, 2 times may indicate the RAM is having some issues and if the beeping is continuously happening, the processor (CPU) must be having some issues.

Beeping Sound  on Startup

Problem Hardware

1 Beep Sound


2 Beep Sound


3 Beep Sound (Repeat after Pause)

System Memory

Continuously Beeping

Processor (CPU)

You could also connect your CPU(Processor) to another computer’s Motherboard if you wish to put it on a test to make sure whether the processor is having the issue or another part is having the issue. There are many more ways if you wish to know how to know if your CPU is dead.

Did you just try to turn on your computer, and somehow, it didn’t turn on? Maybe you have tried plenty of times, and it just won’t respond. It could also be possible that it got turned on a few times, but just for seconds. If something like this happens, then the chances are that your CPU is dead.

If you are in such a plight, you would want to if your CPU is dead. In this article, I will tell you how to know if the CPU is dead and the signs and symptoms it could show. 

How To Tell If Your CPU Is Dead?

Photo: Pxfuel

How To identify If Your CPU Is Dead: Various Signs & Symptoms

Before you can know how to know if the CPU is dead, there are tons of signs that your CPU might show up before just giving up on you. Here are some common symptoms and signs to look out for:

  • If your PC starts but does not perform a Power-On Self-Test, it might be possible that your CPU would need a change.
  • Another sign is if your OS might not load, or some sometimes load, and sometimes doesn’t. This frequent behavior, too, suggests CPU failure.
  • In cases of CPU failure, the PC, when turning on, might lose power soon. This means that it will switch off suddenly without any information. This is one of the most common signs of CPU failure.
  • A blue-death screen wherein the user receives error messages indicating the problem with the processor would also give you a hint that your PC is dying.
  • If the CPU fans/coolers are running at high speeds, this could also be a sign and symptom of something being wrong with the CPU.
  • There could also be infinite boot loops indicating the problem.
  • You may hear a continuous beeping sound when you turn on the PC.

How To Be Sure That Is Your CPU Dying And Not Any Other Part

There are thousands of components in our computer. Many times, if our computer starts malfunctioning, we wrongly assess the part giving up. Such can be the case with the CPU as well. There could be any other part giving up, and you might have been misdiagnosed. 

Hence, here are a few methods as to how to get to know that it is the CPU that is causing errors:

Try connecting it to another PC: You can connect your processor to another PC’s motherboard to check if the other PC is working or behaving similarly. For this, you would have to check if the computer is compatible with the CPU and has functioning internal hardware. If the other computer shows such signs and symptoms, it is definitely the CPU that is dying.

Fully Disconnect: Disconnect all the parts, except the CPU, PSU, and power switch to check if there are long beeps. These beeps would mean that the connected parts are working fine, but if you don’t seem to hear a beep, then it would mean you have a dying motherboard or CPU.

Sounds: Your computer gives you signals through various sounds. You just need to have ears for it. Right after you switch it on, your motherboard could beep a little to indicate something is wrong with the CPU. Continuous beeping indicates that the CPU is having the issue.

How To Tell If Your CPU Is Dead?

Now that you are 100% sure that the CPU is causing problems, here is how to tell if your CPU is dead.

Checking for Damage

If your computer is showing the above signs and symbols, and you have tried to read messages through the sounds, fully disconnect, and even tried to connect your CPU with another PC, you must now be sure that it is your CPU that is causing errors. 

But is the CPU dead, or is there a minor issue that is fixable? Here is how to know if the CPU is dead or is still fixable.

  • Restart your computer and listen for beeps or any other error messages that show up. If they do, note them down on a piece of paper.
  • Go to the CPU’s manufacturer website to check what the error message means. Here, you can also perform troubleshooting steps that the company itself recommends.
  • You would now have to disconnect from the power. In laptops, take out the battery. Now, just remove the access panel. This is held with screws, so you might have to unscrew it.
  • You would also have to remove the heatsink and reset it. Unclipping the processor would be the next step for you.
  • You would now be able to check for any physical damage like burnt materials, etc. This would surely mean that the processor has failed.
  • Checking if the power cables are connected properly would be the next step. Also, reset the memory by unclipping and clipping again.
  • You would now have to put the processor and heatsink back to turn on the computer.

If nothing changes after performing this, then it is the CPU that has failed and would have to be replaced. In such a case, buying a new one is the only option, as this one cannot be fixed anymore. 

Reasons That May Cause Your CPU To Die

If you have just found out that your CPU has failed, and you would have to go get a new one, you might be thinking, what has caused the CPU to die? What could be the possible cause of the failure of the CPU?

Well, if that’s the case, then you might want to know the reasons behind this failure. Here are some possible reasons why your CPU suddenly gave up on you.

1. Excessive Heat

Although modern processors are designed in a way which can tolerate high temperatures too, prolonged heat might hamper the CPU. Therefore, one should be careful with that.

2. Unstable Voltage

An unstable voltage can harm the CPU. If the PSU is not a good quality one and is cheap, then it might cause irregular voltage in the computer, which could cause the problem.

3. Electrical Power Surge

This is not only harmful to the CPU but to most of the parts of the computer. It might cause permanent damage to the computer as the current spikes up and down at a high rate.

4. Age

Like all components of the computer, the CPU also can last a couple of years only. This component, too, grows weak with time, especially if not taken proper care of. Generally, such problems can occur if the CPU is more than 5 years old.

5. Overclocking

If you are someone who tries to push the CPU beyond limits and the base clock speed, then all of it would come with a price. Overclocking your CPU would not be wise and would surely result in something like this.

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If your CPU is acting up and showing you certain signs and symbols, you must know how to tell if your CPU is dead or dying. There could be plenty of reasons why something like this could be happening. However, it is always a good idea to keep your CPU fans in check so that something like this almost never occurs.

Moreover, you could also keep an eye on the CPU’s temperature reading so that you can predict something like this beforehand and fix it before it completely dies. Cleaning the PC internally would also be a great option too. However, now that you know how to identify if your CPU is dead and if it has really failed, replacing it would be the only option left with you.

About the author

Atish Ranjan

This Article is Authored by Atish Ranjan who has been blogging for over a decade now. He specializes mainly in Tech Blogging but he works in various other niches as well. He mainly blogs at his blog

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