How to put a PC case back together

Get your checklist out: have you fitted the motherboard, processor, memory, hard disk or SSD, optical drive, graphics card and any expansion cards? Then it’s time to finish the job.

It’s worth taking the time to tidy the case properly, as this improves airflow and makes it easier to add any future components.

1. Tidy the cables

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If the inside of your computer is neat and tidy, you’ll get better airflow and keep it cooler. A neat PC is also easier to work on should you need to install an upgrade later on.

One way to keep your case tidy is to fit cable ties. Simply locate loose cables that are running in the same direction and loop a cable tie around the bunch. Slide the strap through the buckle and pull it tight. The ratchet should click into place and stop the cable becoming undone. If it doesn’t, you’ve inserted the strap the wrong way into the buckle. You can clip the long strap off when you’re done. For extra neatness, loop the strap through drive bays in the case. This will anchor your cables out of the way.

2. Keep the cables out of fans

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It’s worth double-checking that none of your power cables is in the way of the fans inside your PC. If they are, you run the risk of severing your cables when you turn your PC on for the first time. Pull any loose cables out of the way of fans and secure them with cable ties if necessary. The processor fan (particularly on Intel’s designs) is often the worse culprit for snagging cables, so check this one carefully.

3. Attach front

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Check your case’s manual for the exact fitting instructions. If you removed its front, now is the time to fit it again. Line its clips up with the holes in the case and push firmly to reattach it. If you find that your optical drive sticks out too far, you’ve probably fitted it incorrectly. Undo its screws (or fixings if your case is screwless) and slide it further into the case. Screw it back in and fit the front of the case.

4. Attach sides

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Check your case’s manual carefully for full fitting instructions. For most cases, fitting the side panels is a matter of lining up their clips with the grooves on the inside of the case. Take each panel in turn, slide it into place and attach it firmly with a screw.

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