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What is causing my fan to run at a high RPM?


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#1 jwblue

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Posted 01 August 2010 - 09:22 PM

The fans on my desktop are running at a high RPM for seemingly no reason. (3,800 RPM)

I put the computer in sleep mode for 5 seconds. After it comes out of sleep mode, the fans slow down to 2,200 and remain steady for a few hours.

Is this a BIOS issue? A hardware issue? A Windows 7 issue?

The fan was replaced already.

This is a Sony VGC-JS320 desktop.

Edited by jwblue, 01 August 2010 - 09:24 PM.


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#2 swmtech

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Posted 01 August 2010 - 09:49 PM

Have you checked processor usage when the fan is running fast? Could be a program or service is 'hung up' and keeping the process busy until you kick it back into gear or failure when you put the machine to sleep. You don't happen to have MobileMe Installed do you? If you do, I'd put money on that being the cause.

Edited by swmtech, 01 August 2010 - 09:51 PM.


#3 jwblue

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Posted 02 August 2010 - 01:13 AM

Have you checked processor usage when the fan is running fast? Could be a program or service is 'hung up' and keeping the process busy until you kick it back into gear or failure when you put the machine to sleep. You don't happen to have MobileMe Installed do you? If you do, I'd put money on that being the cause.


No Mobile Me. I will check the processor usage.

The problem definitely seems to happen more when I streaming video or playing Majong Titans (that Windows 7 game, not graphics intensive)

The computer has an E5300 dual core processor. Definitely not high end. Could the processor really be that lame that it can't handle streaming a radio station or a simple game like Majong Titans? It makes sense that could be the problem, but logically the processor should be able to handle those simple tasks.

#4 Darth sidious

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Posted 02 August 2010 - 07:47 AM

Might be worth checking the temps speedfan below.

http://download.cnet.com/SpeedFan/3000-2094_4-10067444.html
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#5 DVaD

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Posted 02 August 2010 - 12:31 PM

Have you changed any Bios Settings? Otherwise there could be a problem with the CPU that's causing it to over heat. Is it still under waranty?

#6 swmtech

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Posted 02 August 2010 - 01:02 PM

Definitely run some diagnostics to determine if the processor is really heating up that much, or the temperature sensor is malfunctioning.

I should have also added, that if you are comfortable working inside your case, if you haven't already don this, make sure all the fins of your heat syncs and the vents in your case are very clean. Make sure the system is unplugged and completely cooled before carefully using a vacuum and air can. If you are unsure of your ability to do this safely, please have a professional take care of it for you.

If you determine that the processor is indeed heating up to trigger the fan appropriately via the tool mentioned above AND If you installed the heat sync or processor yourself and/or are comfortable doing so, (you should be experienced at this before attempting) you may want to remove the heat sync assembly on the processor and remove and re-apply new thermal compound to make sure you are getting good conduction between the processor and the heat sync. Sometimes novice builders or speedy warranty repair techs assume the old existing compound is still good enough for good conduction when re-assembled, which is not always the case... I would however rule out the other problems mentioned, as if this is the not the problem it is best left alone...

#7 DVaD

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Posted 02 August 2010 - 03:15 PM

I would however rule out the other problems mentioned, as if this is the not the problem it is best left alone...



On my bios there are some setting you can change that I was playing with to see what effect they had on my PCs heat, and on certain settings the fans would just run at max RPMs also, not to be rude but it's heatsink...

Edited by DVaD, 02 August 2010 - 03:15 PM.


#8 swmtech

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Posted 02 August 2010 - 03:35 PM

On my bios there are some setting you can change that I was playing with to see what effect they had on my PCs heat, and on certain settings the fans would just run at max RPMs also, not to be rude but it's heatsink...


Indeed, I have just been working on "sync" issues so much lately that my fingers defaulted to that. I frequently typo faster than my thoughts... But obviously you knew what I meant. I wasn't really clear on what you are saying - Did the BIOS setting changes solve your issue? I have seen that BIOS setting available, but If your fans were set to always run at high speed I wouldn't have thought they'd run slower after returning from stand-by. Perhaps windows is able to override the setting...

Edited by swmtech, 02 August 2010 - 03:47 PM.


#9 DVaD

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Posted 02 August 2010 - 03:41 PM

The setting in my BIOS I changed to a different setting to automate the speed, there was a another setting I think which was meant to be used for manualy changing fan speed.

#10 jwblue

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Posted 02 August 2010 - 09:53 PM

Definitely run some diagnostics to determine if the processor is really heating up that much, or the temperature sensor is malfunctioning.

I should have also added, that if you are comfortable working inside your case, if you haven't already don this, make sure all the fins of your heat syncs and the vents in your case are very clean. Make sure the system is unplugged and completely cooled before carefully using a vacuum and air can. If you are unsure of your ability to do this safely, please have a professional take care of it for you.

If you determine that the processor is indeed heating up to trigger the fan appropriately via the tool mentioned above AND If you installed the heat sync or processor yourself and/or are comfortable doing so, (you should be experienced at this before attempting) you may want to remove the heat sync assembly on the processor and remove and re-apply new thermal compound to make sure you are getting good conduction between the processor and the heat sync. Sometimes novice builders or speedy warranty repair techs assume the old existing compound is still good enough for good conduction when re-assembled, which is not always the case... I would however rule out the other problems mentioned, as if this is the not the problem it is best left alone...


The temperature of the cores are 36 and 38. They are not overheating. I wish I could use SpeedFan to control the fans, but the program does not recognize them.

What about undervolting the processors?

I can't do anything with the BIOS. Sony locks them in at a particualr RPM. When I go into the BIOS, the setting for the fan are there, but nothing can be changed.

#11 DVaD

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Posted 03 August 2010 - 11:07 AM

Hmm, have you tried updating the BIOS?

Edited by DVaD, 03 August 2010 - 11:08 AM.


#12 swmtech

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Posted 04 August 2010 - 11:22 PM

jwblu,

Since you have proven that the processor does not seem to be getting hot enough to legitimately trigger the fan's high speed, I don't see what good undervolting the processor would do. I could see slowing it down if the temps were getting high, but that does not seem to be the case here based on your info...

As DVaD posted, have you checked to see if there is a newer BIOS available for you machine?

I am confused that at one point you said you changed some BIOS settings, but then you say that Sony does not allow you to change them. Can you clarify that any more?
Also, just for verification, based on the post I am guessing that the fan has not always run fast since you got it, but is a recent symptom. Is that correct?

Can you think of anything at all change around the time the symptom started? An update or upgrade to software/hardware, lighting storm, etc?
Was the fan running on high all the time the only reason for replacing the fan originally, or was there something else?
Just fishing for clues here... kind of an odd problem...

Lastly, I don't remember as it's been a while since I have worked on a Sony, do they provide any diagnostic utilities? If they do, it might be worth a pass to have them check the temp sensors and fan speed controls and such. I mostly work on Dells, and I know their diagnostic utilities test those things, although I've never seen one fail yet...

#13 jwblue

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Posted 05 August 2010 - 05:03 PM

jwblu,

Since you have proven that the processor does not seem to be getting hot enough to legitimately trigger the fan's high speed, I don't see what good undervolting the processor would do. I could see slowing it down if the temps were getting high, but that does not seem to be the case here based on your info...

As DVaD posted, have you checked to see if there is a newer BIOS available for you machine?

I am confused that at one point you said you changed some BIOS settings, but then you say that Sony does not allow you to change them. Can you clarify that any more?
Also, just for verification, based on the post I am guessing that the fan has not always run fast since you got it, but is a recent symptom. Is that correct?

Can you think of anything at all change around the time the symptom started? An update or upgrade to software/hardware, lighting storm, etc?
Was the fan running on high all the time the only reason for replacing the fan originally, or was there something else?
Just fishing for clues here... kind of an odd problem...

Lastly, I don't remember as it's been a while since I have worked on a Sony, do they provide any diagnostic utilities? If they do, it might be worth a pass to have them check the temp sensors and fan speed controls and such. I mostly work on Dells, and I know their diagnostic utilities test those things, although I've never seen one fail yet...


I never did change the BIO settings. It is not possible. There are no updates for the BIOS available.

The fan has always run at high RPM since I bought the machine a year ago. I took it back to Sony. They replaced the fan.

I don't know of any Sony diagnostic utilities.

I have a feeling it is a BIOS issue since when it comes out of sleep, the fan resets to the RPM when the computer is initially booted.

#14 swmtech

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Posted 06 August 2010 - 11:30 AM

If it has always done it, then I fully suspect that the BIOS is running that way because it is set to. Perhaps Sony being overprotective to avoid processor failures. Otherwise it is likely a bug in the BIOS, and only a newer BIOS might fix it if Sony has made one available... While annoying, I can't think of any reason why a fan running on high all the time would cause any harm aside from using up a little more power, and maybe wearing out the fan faster...

#15 jwblue

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Posted 06 August 2010 - 08:12 PM

If it has always done it, then I fully suspect that the BIOS is running that way because it is set to. Perhaps Sony being overprotective to avoid processor failures. Otherwise it is likely a bug in the BIOS, and only a newer BIOS might fix it if Sony has made one available... While annoying, I can't think of any reason why a fan running on high all the time would cause any harm aside from using up a little more power, and maybe wearing out the fan faster...



It looks like I failed to mention the obvious.

IT IS LOUD. It sounds like a jet engine.




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