My Computer Won't Turn on and the Caps Lock Button Keeps on Flashing

By James Wright

Just because your computer doesn't turn on doesn't mean it's dead.
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If your computer doesn't turn on when you press the power button and you're met instead with flashing lights on your keyboard, this is generally indicative of a few different types of hardware-related problems. Your work environment can affect your computer in many ways, especially if it is hot or dirty, or if your computer is ever moved or jostled. A blinking "Caps Lock" key typically means that there is a power-related issue, such as an error with your power supply, or that your computer cannot properly ventilate itself. However, this can often be resolved without needing to take it in for repairs.

Clear Ventilation

In order to run efficiently for long periods of time, a computer needs to be well ventilated. If dust is clogging the vents and weighing down the fans, the computer can overheat. In some cases the computer may not turn on at all. This is part of its design to help it avoid any physical damage. Take your computer outdoors and use a can of compressed air to clear your computer's vents and fans of dust. Open your computer's frame if possible so you can be more thorough.

Power Reset

A power reset can fix many issues causing a computer not to start up. Shut down your computer, disconnect all connected cables and devices and unplug the power cord. Remove the battery, then press and hold the power button for 15 to 20 seconds. Reconnect the power cord, then try to turn your computer on. If it works properly, you can then reattach the battery and continue using it normally. For desktop computers or other computers without batteries, unplug the power and all devices, press and hold the power button as mentioned before, then plug it back in and attempt to turn it on.

Reseat RAM

RAM is the memory your computer needs to run, and if your RAM ever gets jostled or unseated, your computer will not operate. Reseating the RAM requires physical access to it, so you will need to be able to open your computer case. Shut down your computer and disconnect everything, then carefully remove your RAM completely. Place it back in its slots, making sure it snaps in snugly. Close your computer frame, then try to turn it on again.

Battery and AC Adapter

For some computers, different blinking lights refer to specific issues. A blinking "Caps Lock" key can sometimes mean that there is an issue with your battery or AC Adapter. If your battery LED and "Num Lock" button are also blinking, this can mean the same thing. If the power reset and clearing your computer's ventilation does not work, you may need to take your computer in for servicing or attempt to replace your battery, AC adapter or power supply.