Why Are Motherboard USB Ports Not Working?

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USB interfaces are essential to modern computing, allowing us to easily connect various devices and peripherals to our computers. 

Whether it’s a mouse, keyboard, printer, or external force, USB ports are crucial to the efficacy of our structures. However, it can be surprisingly annoying when these interfaces suddenly stop working, rendering us unable to use these vital connections. 

If you encounter a situation in which the USB terminals on your motherboard are not functioning properly, it is essential to understand the underlying causes. In this article, we will discuss the most common reasons why USB ports on a motherboard may stop functioning and provide troubleshooting tips to help you resolve the issue and restore the functionality of your USB ports.

Why Motherboard USB Ports Not Working?

It’s because of dirt and debris in your USB port, an old version of Windows or optional updates, the wrong drivers, the wrong USB controller drivers, the wrong power settings for the USB port, or a bad or faulty motherboard. You have to first navigate the problem to resolve it quickly.

Dirty USB Ports

Dust can build up on the connectors of the USB port and the USB cable, making it hard to make a strong link. It can make it hard or impossible to stay connected. Dust can build up between the USB connections, making electricity hard to flow.

It can cause errors in the transfer of information, slower transfer speeds, or even a total break in the connection. Too much dirt can cause short connections between the USB port pins if it builds up too much. It will damage the USB gadget or the port.

  • How To Fix It?

Always keep your USB ports neat and clean. You can use a soft bristle brush to clean the ports or canned air to remove the accumulated dust and debris. It will ensure a secure connection between the port and the USB device. To prevent the dust from accumulating in the future, you can use USB covers to protect your USB ports.

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Outdated Windows and Optional Updates

Windows that are too old won’t have the drivers it needs to work with newer USB devices. It can cause problems with connectivity or functionality. Computer bug fixes for USB problems are often part of optional updates. If you don’t install these changes, you might run into issues already fixed.

Windows versions a few years old may also have security holes that could affect how USB works. USB devices may also use special features or standards that older versions of Windows don’t support.

  • How To Fix It?

Ensure that your Windows is up to date. Go to the Windows start menu and type “Check for updates,” and then check for new Windows updates. If there is an update available, install it immediately. 

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Wrong Installation of USB Controllers

When you install the wrong or mismatched USB controller drivers, it can cause device drivers to fight with each other. It can make USB devices act strangely or even cause them to stop working.

If USB controllers are not set up correctly, it can slow down the speed at which information is transferred or sometimes cause the link to drop out. It can slow down file downloads, stop tools from talking to each other, or cause USB devices to disconnect frequently.

  • How To Fix It?

You have to uninstall the unnecessary drivers in the USB controller section or install the necessary drivers to make your USB port work. To do that, open Device Manager and go to the “Universal Serial Bus Controllers” section. Here, you will find all the installed drivers for your USB ports.

If an unknown or unnecessary driver is installed, right-click on it and select “Uninstall.” Similarly, suppose you have connected to any known device, but your port is not recognizing it. In that case, you must connect that device, click “Universal Serial Bus Controllers,” and then select “Scan for hardware changes.” It will install the driver, and your USB port will start working normally.

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Misconfigured USB Selective Suspend Power Settings

USB Selective Suspend is a function in Windows that saves power. When turned on, it lets the computer turn off power to certain USB ports or devices not being used. It helps save power and extend the life of laptop batteries. When a USB device is put on hold, it goes into a low-power state but stays connected to the computer.

But this could also make the USB not work right because any bug in the system can cause the USB system to run out of power because of how the power settings for selective suspend work. 

  • How To Fix It?

You have to disable USB selective suspend power settings if facing constant issues. To disable the option, right-click on the battery sign in the laptop and select “Power Option” or type “Edit power plan settings” in the Windows start menu.

Solved: Why Motherboard USB Ports Not Working? - Easy Fix | cpugpunerds.com

Once you are in the settings, select “Change advanced power settings,” and then scroll down to select “USB settings,” and then extend “USB Selective Suspend Power Settings.” Here, you will find the “On battery and Plugged” options. If both are “Enabled,” then “Disable” them. It will make sure that your USB ports always have power.

Solved: Why Motherboard USB Ports Not Working? - Easy Fix | cpugpunerds.com

Wrong Driver Updates

Installing drivers not made for your USB device or the operating system you’re using could cause compatibility issues. The moving force might not be able to talk to the USB device correctly, which could cause problems or make the whole thing stop working.

Problems can also be caused by installing old or the wrong drivers. USB technology is always improving and newer, so old drivers might not work with new features or upgrades.

  • How To Fix It?

Open the Device Manager, right-click on the USB device giving you trouble, and choose “Properties.” Go to the “Driver” tab and choose “Roll Back Driver.” It will change the moving force back to how it was before.

Solved: Why Motherboard USB Ports Not Working? - Easy Fix | cpugpunerds.com

But if your driver is outdated, you must install the updates. Again, open the properties of the USB port’s driver you want to update, then go to “Driver” and select “Update Driver.” It will update the USB driver to the latest.

Solved: Why Motherboard USB Ports Not Working? - Easy Fix | cpugpunerds.com

Change Power Management Settings

If you turn on power management settings and “Allow the computer to turn off this tool to save power,” the USB device could be turned off or get too little power. It can make the connection go in and out or cause the computer to stop recognizing the tool.

  • How To Fix It?

To change these power settings, open Device Manager, expand the “Universal serial bus controller” tab, and right-click the USB whose power settings you want to change. Once you are in the properties, go to “Power management settings.” The “Allow the computer to turn on this device to save power” option is here. If this option is ticked, then it’s enabled. Untick it to disable it.

Solved: Why Motherboard USB Ports Not Working? - Easy Fix | cpugpunerds.com

Bad or Faulty Motherboard

The motherboard has chips called USB controllers that control how the USB ports work. If these chips are broken or don’t work right, it can cause many USB problems, like unrecognized devicesrandom disconnections, or inability to set up a link.

The motherboard is in charge of giving power to USB devices. If the power delivery lines on the motherboard are broken, USB devices might not get enough power or might not be recognized at all.

  • How To Fix It?

Motherboard damages are often permanent, and you can’t repair them. But sometimes, a small circuit or connection damage could be repaired using a soldering iron. But this work needs precision and can only be done by professionals. A non-professional may damage the port or the motherboard.

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Faulty USB Drive or Wire

When a USB power source is broken, it can hurt you physically or have problems with how it works inside. Physical damage, like a bent or broken connector, can make it hard to put the USB device in the right way, which can cause problems with communication. Internal circuitry problems can make sending and receiving records and power hard, leading to strange behavior or the inability to work.

In the same way, a broken USB cord can cause the same problems. The insulation on the wire may also be frayed or broken, which can reveal the wire’s inner conductors and cause connection problems. 

Also, bad wire manufacturing or manufacturing flaws can cause unreliable data transfer or insufficient power transfer, which can cause the USB device to stop working or not work at all.

  • How To Fix It?

Try using a certain USB drive or connection to see if the problem is with that one. If the problem keeps happening, make sure that the USB port on your computer is working by trying to use any other USB device. 

If the problem is only with the USB drive, you could try formatting it to eliminate program problems. But keep in mind that formatting will erase everything on the drive, so back up any important files before formatting. But if the cord is damaged, you can’t do anything instead of replacing the whole cable.

Solved: Why Motherboard USB Ports Not Working? - Easy Fix | cpugpunerds.com

How To Enable or Disable USB Port in Windows 10?

You can enable or disable the USB port using Device Manager settings. By turning off your USB ports, you can protect your computer from being hacked through USB devices. It can stop malware, information theft, or illegal copying sensitive records. You can enable it whenever you want to use it.

Follow these steps in Windows 10 to allow or turn off a USB port:

  • Press the Windows key + X on your keyboard, and then choose “Device Manager” from the menu that comes up.
  • Expand the “Universal Serial Bus Controllers” category in the Device Manager window.
  • Right-click on the USB port you want to turn on or off and choose “Disable” or “Enable” from the menu that appears.
  • If asked to confirm, click “Yes” to move forward.
  • Once turned on or off, the changes take effect right away.

Solved: Why Motherboard USB Ports Not Working? - Easy Fix | cpugpunerds.com

Note: If you turn off a USB port, any devices connected won’t work. If you turn it back on, everything will work as usual. Keep in mind that you may need management rights to make these changes.

What Are The Symptoms of USB Port Failure?

USB port failure can appear with varied symptoms. That is one common sign When the computer cannot recognize or locate a connected device. Error messages stating that the USB device is defective or not always recognized may come after this. Here is the list of symptoms.

  • Device Not Found 

If you plug a USB tool into a port and your computer doesn’t find or identify it, it could mean that the port is broken. The tool will not show up in the File Explorer or show any other signs that it is connected.

  • Intermittent Connectivity 

USB devices can also link and disconnect randomly or regularly. You might have trouble staying connected sometimes where the device disconnects and reconnects independently. It can cause problems with data transfer or cause gadgets to work wrong.

  • Slow Data Transfer Or Charging 

If a USB port is broken, it can also cause slow data transfer or charging speeds. When you connect devices to the impacted port, you may also notice that switching or charging takes a lot longer than usual.

  • Physical Damage Or Looseness 

Check the USB port for physical damage, such as bent or broken pins or signs of wear and tear. When you plug in a USB cord, if the connection is loose or wobbly, that could also mean the port is broken.

  • Error Messages 

Your computer can also show error messages about the USB port or devices attached to it. These messages can be different, but they usually mean the USB port is broken or can’t talk to the tool.

  • Overheating Or A Burning Smell

A broken USB port can sometimes get too hot or give off a burning smell. It means there is a problem with the hardware, possibly because of a short circuit or other electrical problem.


Modern computing relies on USB connectors to connect various devices to PCs. However, broken USB ports can slow us down. This article covered the most common reasons USB ports stop working and how to fix them.

Dirty USB ports often fail. Clean the ports with a soft bristle brush or bottled air to keep the USB device securely connected. USB covers also prevent dust buildup. Outdated Windows or optional patches can cause USB port issues. Windows updates can fix compatibility issues and ensure the proper drivers are installed.

Update USB controller drivers properly to avoid conflicts that cause USB devices to malfunction. Uninstalling or installing the appropriate drivers will fix this issue. USB power issues might result from incorrect USB selected stop power settings. Turning off the USB selected stop power will always power the USB ports.

Installing outdated drivers can potentially create USB port issues. Fix interface issues by rolling back or updating the driver. If power management settings are incorrect, the computer may turn off or underpower USB devices. Device Manager, power control adjustments, can fix this issue.

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