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Hardware Hacking

Journal Bill Dog's Journal: Mini Ask /.: What should I do about a noisy heatsink fan? 4

It started all of a sudden last night, upon awakening the computer. My PC is right around 3 years old.

I'm pretty sure it's the fan on my video card. I don't play video games anymore [altho I couldn't resist checking out that online Wolfenstein thing and playing that for a while one night] so this one is just the mid to low end of nVidia's "business graphics" line of cards. (So maybe I don't even need the fan?)

I vacuumed it out as best as I could with what I've got (large extension on a huge Hoover), but no change. It wouldn't be so aggravating it if was at least constant in its new loudness.

Anyone reading this know if this can be fixed? Should I go buy some compressed air and try it? Or is it probably just some (cheap) bearing(s) going out? I had a new fan noise in my computer about a year ago, but it was just a dust bunny in the CPU fan I think, and it stopped making noise once I sucked it out.

Is there a way to re-lube these things (that's not going to end up dripping oil on the rest of my system/scattering graphite dust when in place!)? I could take the card out and take it into the Geek Squad or something, if the labor charged was not near what a new card costed.

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Mini Ask /.: What should I do about a noisy heatsink fan?

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  • I had this problem with a heatsink fan a while back.

    Though I ultimately had to replace said fan, I found a solution that worked at least for a while. I disassembled the fan and took a green kitchen scrubber pad to the shaft of the fan, to remove stuff that had essentially cooked onto it - dust particles, hair and whatever else got into the case. You'll be able to feel that stuff on there even if you cannot see it. Steel wool is not good as it can scratch the shaft which will make the problem worse. Once I h

    • Thanks to you and windcask and the friendly AC for volunteering advice. I left my computer off for a couple of days, disgusted with it, and maybe it sensed by scorn and was ashamed, because the bugger is quiet again. Hopefully it just had to work out some dust that had gotten way in there. I've never had a fan go on anything. But if does act up again I have things to try.

      Something else comes to mind, that I never really paid attention to before. When I first start up the machine, one or more fans spins up t

  • Fans are cheap. Look at the part number on the fan and you'll probably be able to find one on Ebay for less than ten bucks. Pop the old one off, pop the new one on, refasten the screws, you're done.

"I will make no bargains with terrorist hardware." -- Peter da Silva