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Old 05-13-2011, 07:11 PM
 
Location: Matthews, NC
14,693 posts, read 23,392,750 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NHDave View Post
Anyone that works on laptops on a regular basis will tell you the exact opposit. The most likely cause of overheating is dust buildup on the heatsinks, I do probably a couple a month, the photo below is one of the worst I've done.
Seen many like that one. We used to just blow out the vent with compressed air til we realized that made it worse by just balling up the dust to the point of sometimes blocking the fan from moving. Much better to just pull the fan.

Just got a bunch of Dells and found that you have to strip them down all way to the system board to take out the fan. What a pain that will be.
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Old 05-13-2011, 07:16 PM
 
10,752 posts, read 18,001,409 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bs13690 View Post
Seen many like that one. We used to just blow out the vent with compressed air til we realized that made it worse by just balling up the dust to the point of sometimes blocking the fan from moving. Much better to just pull the fan.

Just got a bunch of Dells and found that you have to strip them down all way to the system board to take out the fan. What a pain that will be.
Yup, they're either easy and take 5 minutes or a PITA and take an hour or more.

If it's just light dust I'll blow it, but with heavy stuff it has to be taken apart.
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Old 05-14-2011, 03:09 AM
 
575 posts, read 842,696 times
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Another thing I have realized is that silver thermal bakes when left on for too long. Putting new compound on the processor was just as important as blowing out the heatsink and fans.
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Old 05-14-2011, 12:39 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,663 posts, read 75,359,941 times
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Fundamental question: If the top of my desktop feels cool to the touch, is that an indicator that it is not heating excessively and is not in (urgent) need of cleaning? Or is an overheating PC not expected to warm the box exterior?

By "cool to the touch", I mean about the same temperature as a table top a few feet away. For example, my TV cable digital box, even when turned "off", feels much, much warmer, and so does my modem and my portable phone.
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Old 05-26-2011, 09:41 PM
 
575 posts, read 842,696 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
Fundamental question: If the top of my desktop feels cool to the touch, is that an indicator that it is not heating excessively and is not in (urgent) need of cleaning? Or is an overheating PC not expected to warm the box exterior?

By "cool to the touch", I mean about the same temperature as a table top a few feet away. For example, my TV cable digital box, even when turned "off", feels much, much warmer, and so does my modem and my portable phone.
For desktops, it depends how much free space there is and whether or not the heat sink and fan are of good quality and whether or not they used artic silver or not (makes a big difference from the older stuff that looks like elmer's glue). Also over time I've seen some mother boards needing to be taken apart and put back together because thermal expansion and contraction squeezes components out of their sockets and plugs.

If it always felt warm then it is probably OK, but if this is a recent phenomena then you may need to clean it out like I did.
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Old 05-31-2011, 11:10 PM
 
3,614 posts, read 3,090,722 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plwhit View Post
I STILL SEE A HOLE! Leave it, damn be the consequences!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jtur88 View Post
Fundamental question: If the top of my desktop feels cool to the touch, is that an indicator that it is not heating excessively and is not in (urgent) need of cleaning? Or is an overheating PC not expected to warm the box exterior?
Metal is a great conductor. The air temperature will eventually warm it up, but there is a lot of air inside that case and a lot of metal to warm up, so if it begins to feel warmer than it should, you might have a fire inside your computer.

[/quote]By "cool to the touch", I mean about the same temperature as a table top a few feet away. For example, my TV cable digital box, even when turned "off", feels much, much warmer, and so does my modem and my portable phone.[/quote]

Your modem, phone, box and the like are probably made of plastic, which will feel warmer. Plastic is an insulator, and your body heat will warm it quickly. if your computer case is metal, it'll probably feel cooler because it's a great conductor of heat. It'll suck the heat from your hand. Long story short, get a simple temp-probe for your processor or use any number of free programs like Hardware Monitor that'll monitor the temperature for you.
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Old 06-02-2011, 09:12 AM
 
16,308 posts, read 25,260,164 times
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Worst I have seen was in a PC in office of a local custom cabinet shop. Not only did it have the 'normal' dust, but saw dust, and everyone in the office was a heavy smoker. That stuff couldn't be blown off or vacuumed away, it had to be scrapped off, in addition to it stank from the cigarette smoke/ashes.
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:02 AM
 
575 posts, read 842,696 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asheville Native View Post
Worst I have seen was in a PC in office of a local custom cabinet shop. Not only did it have the 'normal' dust, but saw dust, and everyone in the office was a heavy smoker. That stuff couldn't be blown off or vacuumed away, it had to be scrapped off, in addition to it stank from the cigarette smoke/ashes.
On my last Job, I got computers from remote offices back exactly like that. No matter how many times you tell them the computer needs good airflow, they will always manage to stick it underneath a desk, against a wall blocking the fan, etc.
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:17 AM
 
Location: Wandering.
3,545 posts, read 5,678,159 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevebri View Post
On my last Job, I got computers from remote offices back exactly like that. No matter how many times you tell them the computer needs good airflow, they will always manage to stick it underneath a desk, against a wall blocking the fan, etc.
The last place I worked put computers into restaurants (including the kitchens). We got some really nice stuff back from these places. Water damage was pretty common, along with various bugs, grease, unimaginable amounts of dust, etc.
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Old 06-03-2011, 03:01 PM
 
Location: Maryland not Murlin
8,193 posts, read 22,568,230 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevebri View Post
I disassembled my laptop (it's an older toshiba satelite a75 3.2ghz proc) and cleaned off the processor and applied new thermal silver compound. My laptop had been shutting down and I knew the culprit was the cpu overheating, but didn't think there was anything to be done about it. It had gotten so bad that I could not even turn it on and leave it for 20 minutes or so so that it could complete virus definition updates without it shutting off.

I did some research and discovered that this particular model suffers from overheating on occasion. You wouldn't think that blowing out the heatsink and fans (mine has two)and reapplying new thermal compound would make a big difference, but it has.

things I couldn't do before previously mentioned maintenance:

watch online video
update virus scanner definitions
have multiple tabs open in Firefox
navigate to a page in firebox with a plethora of scripts (even with the noscript extension)
defrag the hard drive

all of the above mentioned activities can now be done with no problems after some simple maintenance.

I know this is an old laptop, but I don't have the cash right now to upgrade, so this restored my laptop to store bought conditions (but I bought it off of ebay).

Definitely worth the effort for anyone thinking of getting a new laptop if they are experiencing similar problems.
An ex GF of mine had (well, still has) a Dell desktop that was 6 years old at the time. The fans would come on like crazy for no reason at all and the thing would sound like it was about to take off at any moment (like a plane's engine revving up). She made many attempts to quite the fans (driver updates, installing this, un-installing that, etc.), until she came across some info about cleaning off the fans. So, she opened the case, blew the dust off the fans (which were filthy), and wala--the Dell began to operate quite and cool.
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