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Graphics card fan not working properly

By sybreal
Jul 27, 2011
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  1. I made a post on another part of the forum about my computer shutting down on its own. One thing lead to another and I eventually figured out that my power supply isn't failing and my Cores are not overheating. It appears to be my graphics card. The fan is not spinning nearly fast enough and very weakly. The fan cooling my processors would hurt my finger if I touched it but the graphics card fan just stops. The heat sink under the fan is really hot. I almost burned myself. Is there any way I could manually set the fan to go faster before the card overheats and turns my computer off?

    I currently use an ATI Radeon HD 4800.
  2. SINEKT

    SINEKT TS Rookie Posts: 31

    It seems that there is a mechanical problem with the fan. The video card needs to be pulled out, and the fan removed. This is something you can do yourself.

    Usually, there is a plastic or rubber cap on the bottom of the fan, where you can find the impeller's axis. Sometimes it's just a hole and you can directly see the axis. There is a small safety washer, usually white and made of Teflon. You can use a lot of tools and stuff to release this washer. It is completely cut on one side and you can see this cut when you push on it with something. What I usually do is I grab a couple of sharp thin things (needles, toothpicks, cutter, knife, paper clips, anything thin and strong enough), and push it from one side. This is not enough to remove it, but it should either pop one end out and then you slowly work it's way out with the other tool towards the other end, or it will slide a bit away from the axis, and then you can stick the second tool between it and the axis and pop it out.

    After this you should be able to remove the impeller, by slowly dragging it out by the central knob, where the blades attach. It could oppose a bit, as the magnet passes along the metal part of the coil. Watch out for the other 2 or 3 stuff that might be on the axis, one or two rubber washers, ball bearings, maybe a little spring, make sure you keep them all and prevent them from falling on the floor so you can find them later when you reassemble the thing. :haha:

    Try cleaning the small tube where the axis goes and the axis itself (I recommend alcohol), also rub the washers, spring, bearings & safety washer with a little piece of cloth sprayed with alcohol. Some dirt will come off. Clean up the other parts as well, the impeller & it's blades, the fan etc.

    Then you can use either fine mechanics oil or a very little bit of petroleum jelly. I used both with success. Reassemble everything and it should be spinning OK now.
  3. sybreal

    sybreal TS Rookie Topic Starter

    While that sounds like a good thing to do, I updated my cards drivers and now the fan seems to be working better although the card is still pretty damn hot, its not turning off the computer anymore. If it does turn it off though I might follow your suggestion and disassemble and clean the fan... Or just buy a new one.
  4. SINEKT

    SINEKT TS Rookie Posts: 31

    I was about to write about buying a new one, but I forgot. :D Try to see the video processor temperature (GPU temperature). There are some programs out there, one of them is HWINFO32 and it's free. Install it and run it with Sensor Only option (it shows you a checkbox when it starts), then post the GPU temperature here. Some video card manufacturers, like ASUS, also have their own utilities that show GPU info. The rule I generally use is that if you can't keep your hand on it, which happens around 50 degrees Celsius, it's a problem.
  5. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,894   +88

    __________________

    Thats not a very good rule SINEKT. Very few cards out there run anywhere near 50C at load. GPU's from both camps thermal operating limit is 105C .(this is the spec for the 4000 as well) while cooler is better, average loaded temp for VGA's is 75c - 85c (assuming a normal range of ambient)....here is a good representation of this
    http://www.guru3d.com/article/club3d-radeon-hd-6870-x2-review/9

    The 4870 was bit of a warmer than usual running card as well. Your card running at say 85-90c would not be out of the norm for heavy gaming/load situations.
  6. sybreal

    sybreal TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I updated the drivers and there is a temperature monitoring tab in the control panel for the video card. The temperature for the card is usually around 55 degrees when Im not playing any games, but it can go as high as 72 when I'm playing WoW. This is with the tower open and a fan blowing on the video card.
  7. SINEKT

    SINEKT TS Rookie Posts: 31

    Well that is pretty much ok. I would prefer lower temperatures, but as long as this is with the stock cooler, I'd say it's no problem at all.

    Is the PC turning off anymore ?
  8. sybreal

    sybreal TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Its not a fan made for a computer. I mean I literally have the tower open and a fan is blowing into it. And no the computer is not turning off anymore. I just get cold because of the fan =/


    By the way if you still dont get it, this kind of fan: Fan
  9. nfiniti9

    nfiniti9 TS Rookie Posts: 38

    Yeah there is quite a few cards that run 80-90 these days. There is a ATi 4350 card with passive heatsink made by MSI that is so hot when you touch it you get burned pretty fast. All of them are like that. The problem is that the cards that run at 80-90 in a decent case with good airflow suffer greatly when in less than ideal environments. Just the cubbie style desks can cause a lot of additional heat to build up. I gotta say I'm not too happy they let video cards run so close to the thermal limits. But the only real solution is underclock/volt or nicer heatsinks (loud or more money or both). However psu and cpu should not be getting this hot. So its fairly decent rule for them.


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