Computer Fan Noise

What Are Computer Fans?

A computer fan is a component found in a computer case, usually in the Central Processing Unit (CPU), that helps prevent a variety of parts within the system from being damaged due to overheating while the machine is running. Without the temperature protection a fan offers, your computer can malfunction, become permanently damaged, or even crash.

Most often you will find that computer fans come in square frames, though round frames are not entirely uncommon. Fans come in sizes of 60, 80, 92, and 120 millimeters or approximately 2.36, 3.15, 3.60, 4.70 inches. Of course, the size of the fan that you need will depend on the computer's size and cooling requirements. Fans are installed in the chassis of a computer in front of, at the sides, on top of, or even behind where they can best cool the system components depending on the computer's configuration.

What Causes Computer Fan Noise?

When the fan noise of a computer becomes excessively loud it is an indicator that something is wrong with your PC, and the issues should be attended to immediately. The noise produced by these fans is usually due to dust that has accumulated on or in your CPU fan or power supply fan. In this type of a situation all you have to do is clean the dust off the fan, which is a fairly simple procedure once you know what you are doing. Cleaning the fan will help cut down on the noise generated as well as improve the performance of your computer.

How to Reduce Computer Fan Noise

The first thing you will have to do before you attempt to clean the fan in your computer is save your work prior to closing any and all programs you might be working with. Once you've saved your work, shut down your computer.

After shutting down, check your computer and make note of all the devices connected to it. Unplug them all; this includes separating the monitor from the CPU as well as every other attached peripheral device.

Remove all the peripheral devices from your work area as during the process of cleaning your computer fan a lot of dust will be flying around and you don't want this dust to enter and settle on any other part of your system and compromise it.

Check the screws holding your computer case together and procure an appropriate screwdriver to open the case. Always unplug your computer from the electric socket before attempting to open its case. Remove the screws opening the top or side of the case according to where the fan is placed. Set the removed parts along with the other peripheral devices. Gather your cleaning supplies and place them in your work area.

Removing Dust from the Computer Fan

Get a can of compressed air, attach the spray nozzle as directed, hold the can straight up, and make gentle sweeps unleashing the air across the blades of the CPU and power supply fans. This will help remove loose dirt, lighter dust, and cobwebs. Use the compressed air to direct the dust toward a part of the casing that does not have any devices.

Use a cotton swab to remove dust that has caked on to the CPU and power supply fans; this can be the most problematic sort of dirt, causing the most noise and damage by keeping the computer fan from operating at its full capacity. For caked-on dust a cotton swab is preferable, since a can of compressed air will usually not get the job done.

Once you are finished cleaning the fans in your computer check for dust in other areas such as on network cards, graphic cards, memory sticks, ports, and the like. Should you find excessive amounts of dust, repeat the process used on the fans you have just cleaned.

When you are done cleaning these inner devices, use a vacuum to gently draw out the dust that has collected in the case. Here the use of a vacuum cleaner crevice tool is preferable.

Now you can replace the part of the computer case you removed. Be sure to screw back the cover tightly, because if you don't you'll have another dust build up in short order.

Once your CPU has been put back together reconnect all the peripheral devices and reboot. Check if your computer is in proper operating condition. By now the fan noise emanating from your system should be drastically reduced. If the cleaning process did not resolve your problem, you may need to replace your computer's cooling fan. Explore the cooling fans that NMB Tech offers online now if this is the case.