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Old 2009-11-12, 08:35   Link #1
BASS in SPACE
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Join Date: Apr 2008
CPU fan/heatsink question

Hi guys, I was hoping for a bit of help with my CPU fan/heat sink. Recently, the CPU fan has been very noisy (there's no rattling or anything, just sound like it's working really hard), especially when running programs, which is understandable. The noise level, however, was excessive, even for simple tasks like web browsing (no youtube or anything). I opened up the case and cleaned out the fan and heat sink... Now it's constantly noisy, and i can't play HD video properly, as it gets extremely laggy. I'm guessing I probably bumped something by accident while putting the fan back in, but that would still not account for the loud noise heard before I meddled with anything.

I ran everset just now, and the fan was running at around 4000rpm, and temperature was at 87 degrees Celsius (188.6 F), which is rather worrying... I'm thinking of replacing the heat sink and fan, but thought I'd check here just to see what people with more tech knowledge thought. Could all the problems mentioned before (especially the video one, cus... Well... It means no anime on the pc ) be attributed to the fan, or is there something wrong with the CPU itself? I'm using a laptop right now, but if you guys need more info and want me to run some more tests or something, I'll boot up the desktop itself and do it. Assuming that I DO replace the fan and heat sink, would it come with a thermal pad, or do I need to get thermal compound myself? I'm not exactly sure about the difference between the two, and would like to know if they can be used interchangeably. Do I need to clean out the old pad/thermal before putting in the new fan? Thanks in advance.
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Old 2009-11-12, 09:27   Link #2
chikorita157
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You may need to reapply the thermal paste to reduce the temperature. Also, you have to realize that heatsinks can build up dust and it's wise to get rid of the layer of dust so that the heat will dissipate properly. If that does not solve it, a new heatsink would possibly sove the problem.

Anything over 80 degrees C can slow down the CPU and temp over 90 degrees or higher can damage it.
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Old 2009-11-12, 15:58   Link #3
Miles Teg
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If you have removed the heatsink then you need to completely clean and reapply new thermal past, if you have only removed the fan then perhaps you have put it back on the wrong side.

It's also possible that the Fan is dying, and simply need to be replaced.

If you put a new heatsink first you need to completely clean the processor, you can do with make up remover, just wait until the remover has evaporated completely before putting the new heatsink.

Most of the time heatsink come with a thermal pad if you are not going to overclock you can use it.
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Old 2009-11-13, 04:53   Link #4
BASS in SPACE
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@chikorita: Yeah, I did clean out all the dust from the heatsink and the fan before posting, but it didn't help. Thanks for the info on the temperature.

*miles teg: Yes I did remove the heatsink, and I think I will be replacing the fan and heatsink. So if the new heatsink does come with a thermal pad, you're saying I can just use that WITHOUT applying thermal paste if I don't plan on overclocking?

Thanks guys for helping me out. Is there any brand of fan that you would recommend, or are they all pretty much the same?
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Old 2009-11-13, 07:40   Link #5
Miles Teg
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If you want to use the pad then don't use thermal past.

If you want to use thermal past then you should remove the pad from the heatsink.
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Old 2009-11-13, 09:05   Link #6
SaintessHeart
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How long had you have that heatsink?

I would recommend digging out its insides with a skewer, sucking up occasionally with a vacuum cleaner. Or you can try extremes like blasting that thing blu-tacked to a window with a leafblower or clean it out with dental floss.

87 degrees without overclock is abit high......don't apply thermal paste. Install the fan first then see what happens, then update us.
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Old 2009-11-13, 19:49   Link #7
BASS in SPACE
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@saintessheart: The computer was bought in 2006, and I have not changed anything aside from the RAM, so the heatsink is 4-5 years old now.

@miles teg: If that is the case, I am probably not going to use thermal paste, and just stick with the pad instead if I change the heatsink.

I am going out to the store later today, so I'll update after that. Thanks again guys.
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Old 2009-11-14, 09:07   Link #8
BASS in SPACE
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Update:

Sorry for double posting. Anyway, I changed the fan and heatsink, and everything's back to normal now. As for the thermal paste, the fan came with thermal grease, so I put a dot in the middle of the CPU cover and put the heatsink back on, but I'm not sure how evenly it was spread because it took me quite awhile to get the heatsink on (there was quite a bit of movement) due to some very stubborn screws. Thanks for the help.
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Old 2009-11-14, 11:54   Link #9
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Don't sweat it if it moved while you were putting it on. The mere act of sandwiching it between the CPU and heatsink is typically enough to give you an even spread, and the pressure forces it into the little imperfections in the material's surface. More often the problem is getting too much in, which actually results in an insulation effect.

If the temps are normal again, odds are it's fine.
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Old 2009-11-15, 05:29   Link #10
BASS in SPACE
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Yep, temps are normal again (61C) and the video problem is gone as well. Thanks for the assurance about the thermal grease
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