Skip to main content

Here’s how you could protect your RTX 4090 from melting

Reports about melting connectors and adapters on the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 are still popping up every so often, and we still haven’t had an official statement from Nvidia on the matter. However, tech experts from around the globe are trying to find the cause of the problem.

This time around, a power supply expert from Corsair released a lengthy explanation of what might be happening. According to JonnyGuru, the issue is not caused by a faulty connector but rather by user error. The fix is rather simple.

A close-up of a power cable inserted into the RTX 4090 GPU.

The theory that those RTX 4090s are melting — or rather, the 16-pin adapter is — due to user error is not exactly new. Many have already weighed in on the matter, stating that bending the cable can cause improper mating; this can potentially cause the temperatures to skyrocket, and after prolonged use, things may set on fire and melt. The problem is that in many cases, bending the cable is almost necessary, or at the very least, it’s difficult to avoid.

JonnyGuru took it one step further and decided to test several connectors by himself, and the testing was pretty extreme. To do this, he used a Corsair HX1500i PSU and three PCIe cables that were connected to Nvidia’s 16-pin adapter.

He took photos of the whole process, and those prove to be pretty handy — they illustrate what a well-inserted cable looks like and what to watch out for when installing your own GPU. To keep an eye on everything, the Corsair expert also used a thermistor to track the temperatures. A zip tie was also used to minimize cable bending.

With all the prep out of the way, JonnyGuru really put the connectors through the wringer, damaging them and even tearing one of the wires off completely. Despite that, he didn’t experience any melting problems, and the temperatures maxed out at 53 degrees Celsius.

To prove his point about user error, the PSU expert researched the cases where other RTX 4090 owners posted photos of their melted connectors. He compared them to properly seated connectors, reaching the conclusion that the cable was not fully connected to the graphics card in the cases where melting happened.

“It’s my opinion that the adapters are fine. You just have to make sure the connector is fully inserted into your card and/or PSU. That said, I will admit that the connectors are VERY DIFFICULT to insert completely. It is easy to think the connector is in all of the way when it’s not. But if the retention clip is not engaged, you will be able to pull the connector back out without squeezing the clip. If the connector and retention clip is fully engaged, the card is definitely fully seated,” said JonnyGuru.

An Nvidia RTX 4090 with a properly seated power connector.

JonnyGuru had another tip for potential RTX 4090 owners — picking up dielectric grease and applying it to the plastic parts on the power connector; just a small amount. It only costs around $4, so it’s a small expense to make for a little more safety.

When will Nvidia weigh in on the matter? We know that the company is taking this problem seriously and the testing is still ongoing, so let’s hope that some sort of a recommendation for affected users will be released soon. Wccftech notes that a new revision to the 12VHPWR cable is currently under review by PCI-SIG, so perhaps the fix is closer than we might think.

Editors' Recommendations

Monica J. White
Monica is a UK-based freelance writer and self-proclaimed geek. A firm believer in the "PC building is just like expensive…
This mysterious Nvidia GPU is an absolute monstrosity — and we just got another look
Two Nvidia GPUs side by side.

The beast is back. Several new photos of what appears to be a quad-slot Nvidia GPU emerged today, revealing a monstrous prototype that's still yet to receive a name. In this iteration, it's more of a cooler than a GPU, as it doesn't appear to have a PCB.

Today's leak brings a lot of questions about what could one day be Nvidia's best GPU ever. Is Nvidia really working on a Titan GPU, or is this the RTX 4090 Ti?

Read more
Nvidia’s RTX 4060 might not be such a disappointment after all
Nvidia's RTX 4070 graphics cards over a pink background.

Nvidia's RTX 4060 is right around the corner, so it's really no surprise that the first benchmarks are already starting to leak out. Today, two tests have been spotted, and they bode pretty well for the GPU. The RTX 3060, which is still a favorite among Nvidia users, might be around 20% slower than the upcoming Ada Lovelace model.

Will the RTX 4060 become one of the best GPUs, or at least one of the most popular models in this generation?

Read more
Nvidia RTX 4090 cables may be melting in a worrying new way
A hand holding the RTX 4090 GPU.

Over the past few months, we’ve seen frequent reports of melting power connectors on Nvidia’s RTX 4090 graphics cards, leading to a wave of worry and speculation that something is seriously amiss. Now, a user has claimed their cable has melted in a dramatic new way -- and it could suggest that the headaches are far from over for Nvidia.

According to Shiftyeyes67k on Reddit, the 12VHPWR cable that came with their RTX 4090 GPU melted on the power supply (PSU) side. In other words, the problem occurred where the cable connectors fed into the power supply, not where they met the graphics card, as has been the case with every other report of melting 12VHPWR connectors.

Read more