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Shutdown Due To Thermal Event


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#1 thewall

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Posted 03 August 2007 - 09:00 AM

Hello,

I have a Dell Dimension 3000 which I shut down in the normal manner last night. It was not showing any signs of problems at the time nor had it done so any time earlier. This morning upon normal start-up I got a message saying Alert! Last shutdown due to thermal event. It then took me to a screen to where I was given the option of F1 or F2. I chose to continue the start-up but after loading Windows(XP home variety) it froze up. After several more attempts it finally started up and seems to be running OK.

I cleaned the case a couple of weeks ago all around the fans(although I did not open it up) and everything seemed to be working properly. I Googled the problem and got several different hits on the subject, but what I am wondering is should I be concerned as it seems to be OK now or should I take further steps and what would anyone suggest I do.

Thanks,


thewall
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#2 Budapest

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Posted 03 August 2007 - 09:09 AM

Try giving your computer a good clean inside the case.

Cleaning the Interior of your PC
The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it.

—George Bernard Shaw

#3 thewall

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Posted 03 August 2007 - 10:30 AM

Thanks for the reply, I am going to do that. Should I be looking for anything that could be damaged which would show up with a visual inspection?
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#4 dc3

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Posted 03 August 2007 - 11:27 AM

About the only thing that isn't mentioned is bad capacitors, if you aren't sure what to look for see this.

One thing to be careful about, the vacuum cleaner can produce a electrostatic discharge, it's best not to touch the nozzle to any of the components. The case is grounded through the PSU so if you hold the metal case with one hand and use the other to use the vacuum you can reduce this risk.

Most computers have a removable front which covers the front grill where the air is pulled in, this is one area that some neglect to find. I've seen grills blocked with dust alone, throw in pet fur and you have the potential of a blocked vent.

Edited by dc3, 03 August 2007 - 11:28 AM.

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#5 thewall

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Posted 03 August 2007 - 12:07 PM

Thanks, I appreciate the replies.

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#6 Sneakycyber

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Posted 03 August 2007 - 02:57 PM

A CPU fan malfunction can cause a problem. If the fan fails to start the computer may shutdown to protect it self. If its working now the fan may be just wearing out. To check for a wearing fan watch the fan as the computer is powered on if it takes awhile to spin up it may be worn. Some CPU Heat sink fans are usually controlled by the motherboard and may not come on until its needed not sure with your particular computer.

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#7 Sterling14

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Posted 03 August 2007 - 05:53 PM

I've had my computer, which is also a Dell Dimension 3000, for 2 years now and have never seen that message. Ya try cleaning it out, and see if the fans are running alright. If you need any other help with the computer, especially with hardware, I really know my ins and outs of it and have changed the parts in it many times.
"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." - Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM, 1943

#8 usasma

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Posted 04 August 2007 - 06:46 AM

Yep, check the fans for operation. Also check (with compressed air) to make sure hairballs aren't stuck inside the fins of the CPU cooler (those buggers aren't readily visible, but they'll wreak havoc with your cooling!).
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

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#9 thewall

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Posted 04 August 2007 - 09:09 AM

Thanks again everyone, I hope to get to it either today or tomorrow.

thewall
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#10 Arkytoe

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Posted 12 August 2007 - 10:44 PM

I also have a Dimension 3000 that suddenly has thermal events. It was shipped to my mother's house via UPS, but was working fine for several years before that. After I set it up, it has twice powered off and notified of a thermal event. I opened the case and it seemed the visible fans were running. It then started up again and worked for a week (until I left my mother's and returned home, of course.) I am returning next weekend and would appreciate any tips on identifying the source. It is, of course, out of warranty and I don't think it is worth the tech fee to have her take it somewhere.

#11 Sneakycyber

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Posted 13 August 2007 - 03:31 PM

Watch this thread and will see what we come up with. And try the suggestions already mentioned and we can go from there.

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#12 usasma

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Posted 14 August 2007 - 09:55 AM

Check the fins of the CPU cooler to make sure they aren't clogged with dust bunnies. The ducting may cover it, so you'll have to move it to see.
My browser caused a flood of traffic, sio my IP address was banned. Hope to fix it soon. Will get back to posting as soon as Im able.

- John  (my website: http://www.carrona.org/ )**If you need a more detailed explanation, please ask for it. I have the Knack. **  If I haven't replied in 48 hours, please send me a message. My eye problems have recently increased and I'm having difficult reading posts. (23 Nov 2017)FYI - I am completely blind in the right eye and ~30% blind in the left eye.<p>If the eye problems get worse suddenly, I may not be able to respond.If that's the case and help is needed, please PM a staff member for assistance.

#13 Arkytoe

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Posted 14 August 2007 - 10:25 AM

This would be so much easier if I wern't a thousand miles away from the computer. I "gave" this older computer to my 83-year old internet connected Mom. Moved all her old files, settings, etc from an older 98 version Dell. I will stop there on the way to deliver my daughter to college and try the air-clean. The computer worked for the week I was there, and shut down again the day after I left (on a reboot because of a frozen mouse). It then worked for another day and shut down again yesterday.

I will check this again while I am there

#14 Joshuacat

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Posted 14 August 2007 - 06:06 PM

The following Dell troubleshooting article may be helpful.

Fan Failure, Thermal Shutdown, and Thermal Error Troubleshooting - Dell™ Desktop Systems

I had the same message on a few hundred Dell Optiplex computers at work. Turned out it was a bulging capacitor issue. Dell had to come in and replace all of the motherboards on my Dell Optiplex systems. I am not saying you are having the same issue since this is a Dimension, and as far as I know, is not known for this having issues with bad caps.
JC

#15 PatrickMoe

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Posted 26 September 2007 - 03:02 PM

I am having a similar problem here with a Dell Optiplex GX280.

On startup, I get this message...

Alert! CPU fan failure.
Strike the F1 key to continue, F2 to run the setup utility.


I opened up the system and found that the CPU fan was not running.
I replaced it with a known good one and it would still not run.

I also managed to update the BIOS from revision 03 to revision 08 with no help either.

Does anyone know what voltages I should be getting from the pins on the connector on the motherboard?

I had a similar problem on another of these in the past and upon removing and re-insterting the CMOS battery, the fan started working again. I don't know why this would help but it did. This is not the case with this system.

Any help with this would be appreciated.

Edited by PatrickMoe, 26 September 2007 - 03:25 PM.

No.... We didn't change any passwords today.
Is your CAPS Lock key turned on?.......
Oh. It works now?....
Imagine that.




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