There could be many reasons behind a blinking or constant orange light on the motherboard. The way the orange light behaves gives you a hint about the malfunctioning hardware.
In most scenarios, a blinking orange light on the motherboard is related to an unstable or low power supply whereas the stable orange light refers to improperly connected hardware on the motherboard.
Sometimes your PC also beeps along with the orange light. Again, it could be due to faulty hardware like RAM, hard drive, GPU, etc. All of these signs indicate that there is something wrong with your PC that needs to be addressed.
To make things easy to understand, I’ve divided this guide into three parts Reasons, Solutions, and Preventions.
PART 1: Reasons Behind the Orange Light on Motherboard
As I’ve said, there could be plenty of reasons behind this, it could be any hardware or the motherboard itself that is causing the problem. There’s no need to panic as this guide will help you fix the orange light on your motherboard in easy-to-follow steps.
Here are some of the most common reasons behind this problem:
1. Not Enough Power Supply
In many cases, the blinking orange light is turned on the motherboard when there’s a low power supply issue. What happens is your motherboard is not getting enough power to run the hardware connected to it, therefore, it signals by turning on the light.
I remember when I first came across the orange light on my old Pentium III motherboard, and the reason was I forgot to plug in the 4-pins coming out of my PSU needed to power up my processor.
Sometimes, an underpowered PSU can cause a problem like this. For example, you have installed a power-hungry graphics card on your motherboard that requires a 600W PSU and you only have 400W in your system.
So, you always have to decide first how much PSU you actually need if you have a gaming PC or a PC with power-hungry hardware.
2. Improperly Installed Hardware
If your newly installed hardware is not sitting properly on the motherboard, then this could result in a constant orange light on your mobo. In most cases, it could be your RAM not making the perfect connection with the pins on your motherboard.
It could also be your CPU not fully resting in the motherboard socket. I always follow the manufacturer’s instructions while seating the CPU on a new motherboard.
Also, improper installation of the heatsink could also cause such type of warning lights on the motherboard. When a heatsink is not seated properly on the top of the CPU, it could result in higher temperatures as well as orange light on the mobo.
Lastly, if you have recently installed a new graphics card and getting an orange light error, then maybe the graphics card is not fully resting in the PCI Express slot.
This issue was highly reported with the AGP-compatible graphics card where users had problems inserting the graphics card in the AGP slot. Mostly, the graphics card was lifted from one end (not making a connection with the motherboard).
3. Non Compatible Hardware
If you have recently installed new hardware and that hardware isn’t compatible with your motherboard, then you are more likely to see a warning orange light on your motherboard.
It could be the fact that the RAM you have chosen for your PC isn’t fully compatible with it. There are different generations of RAM mainly DDR2, DDR3, DDR4, and DDR5. Most motherboards only support a unique generation of RAM at a time.
If you try to install different generation RAM on your motherboard that has different clock speeds, then this might turn on the DRAM lights on your mobo.
4. BIOS Errors
BIOS or UEFI errors are sometimes accompanied by error lights on a motherboard. BIOS is responsible for turning on all the components connected to a motherboard to communicate with the operating system.
And if there’s something wrong with any component during the initialization process, then BIOS may trigger a written error on the screen on the screen, emit beep codes, or flash orange light on the mainboard.
5. Faulty Hardware
OK, if you have checked all of the previous reasons and there’s everything fine, then maybe there’s something wrong with your hardware that’s causing the flashy orange light on your mobo.
Even a faulty motherboard can result in such type of errors. Sometimes the capacitors or MOSFETs on a motherboard can blow up, and as a result, you might see flashing lights.
A bad motherboard is unable to distribute the maximum amount of power to all components connected to a motherboard.
Surging temperatures inside your computer could result in orange light on your mobo. Improper airflow inside a PC case could result in heat build-up, which in turn increases the overall temperature.
If the exhaust fan at the back of your PC case is not working, then you will come across rising temperatures inside the case.
PART 2: Solutions to Fix Orange Light on Motherboard
At this point, you are well aware of the reasons that are causing this issue, let’s now look at some of the effective solutions to troubleshoot this problem.
1. Clear CMOS
Do you know that clearing CMOS ( Complementary Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor) can help you in resolving the orange light issue in your motherboard? CMOS is a tiny chip on the motherboard that saves all the BIOS settings and system configuration information.
Clearing the CMOS results in resetting all the configurations to the default values. This can help in fixing the orange light triggering as a result of incorrect BIOS settings or configurations.
All you need is to locate the CMOS battery on your motherboard and remove it. Once the battery is removed, just leave it outside for a few minutes (5 minutes or so) and then put it back in the slot.
2. Check PSU
As I’ve discussed earlier in this article, the main reason for the orange light on the motherboard could be the lower power coming from your power supply.
Make sure you have enough power supply installed on your computer to fuel every component connected to the motherboard. An underpowered or faulty power supply could trigger voltage fluctuations leading to orange light.
Always choose a good power supply that prevents any type of power surges that can potentially damage the motherboard along with triggering error lights.
If you are using a semi-modular or fully modular power supply, then make sure all the power connections are properly connected to the components.
Modern PSUs also come with software or diagnostic features such as LED lights or monitoring tools that can help you identify issues like power overload, under-voltage, or higher temperatures that could trigger orange light.
3. Reseating Hardware
My meeting with the orange light blinking on the motherboard was due to loosely seated RAM. Make sure your RAM evenly sits in the slot on your motherboard. A weak connection between your RAM and motherboard slot can result in beeps or error lights.
Make sure to have a quick check on all of the other components connected to your motherboard. For example, your graphics card might be lifted from one end in your PCI Express slot, which can cause orange light to activate on your motherboard.
4. Examine CPU & Cooling Parts
Check out if your CPU is sitting correctly in the motherboard socket and if the thermal paste on your CPU is intact. If the CPU has a loose connection with the motherboard, then it could trigger a light error.
Cooling parts like CPU coolers and case fans can help a lot in dissipating extra heat from the system. Check if the CPU cooler isn’t too tight to be on the top of your CPU, otherwise, this could trigger errors.
Ensuring that your CPU is properly installed, thermal paste is properly applied, and there are enough fans on your case can help you in preventing orange light errors.
5. Improve Airflow
Remember that overheating is one of the reasons behind the orange light error on the motherboard. And if this error is occurring due to higher temperatures, then improving airflow inside your case can help in eliminating this issue.
First of all, make sure your PC case is clean from the inside and there’s no dust residing on your case fans or any other component. You can also opt for a PC case that pushes more air inside to keep the temperature optimal.
If you are still facing higher temperature issues, then you can simply remove the side panel of your PC case to avoid any heat build-up. Make sure your PC case is nearby a window or ventilated area.
6. Disabling Hardware
By removing the printers, scanners, web cameras, etc you can minimize the possibility of any external hardware causing the orange light on your motherboard.
Afterward, you can connect each of them one by one to make sure which device is the main culprit behind the error.
7. Updating BIOS
So this is the most advanced solution to overcome any orange light error issues. You can simply update the firmware of your motherboard to resolve any incompatibility issues resulting in flashing light errors.
In many cases, the orange light issues are caused by an incomplete BIOS upgrade or corrupted BIOS itself. Therefore, having a fresh update of your BIOS can overwrite the corrupted or incomplete files.
In order to update your BIOS, you have to visit the official website of your motherboard manufacturer and then search for your motherboard model to find if there’s any new BIOS update for it.
PART 3: Prevention and Maintenance Tips
This is the final part of this guide where I will lay out some tips and tricks to prevent your motherboard from triggering orange light errors in the future.
1. Cleaning Your Motherboard
Dust and debris built on your motherboard can have a negative effect on the health of capacitors, MOSFETS, VRMs, etc. Therefore, cleaning your motherboard using compressed air can prevent any dust buildup.
You can also use PC cases that come with mesh filters to prevent any dust particles from coming from outside. A cleaner PC case also helps in keeping the temperature at a minimal level.
2. Use a Reliable Power Source
I put a lot of stress on using a high-quality power supply instead of cheaper ones. You must invest in Gold or Platinum PSUs if you are looking for a reliable power source. Make sure the power supply that you choose is made up of high-quality components.
3. Up-to-Date Motherboard Drivers
Keeping your motherboard updated will prevent any type of incompatibility issues that are triggering constant or flashing orange lights on your motherboard. Motherboard manufacturers often release fixes for any light errors that you are facing on an older BIOS version.
An orange light on your motherboard is a concerning sign that there’s something wrong and needs your attention. But with the right troubleshooting guidelines, you can easily solve this problem. I hope this guide has helped you in identifying and fixing the problem and getting things back to normal.
Make sure you are using the right power supply to fuel your system. Also, make sure that there’s no loose connection between your hardware and motherboard.
If the orange light problem still persists, then reach out to your motherboard manufacturer for further assistance. Maybe it’s time for you to send your old motherboard and get a new one.
Hi, this is Masab, the Founder of PC Building Lab. I’m a PC enthusiast who loves to share the prior knowledge and experience that I have with computers. Well, troubleshooting computers is in my DNA, what else I could say….