PC is very quiet. Troble?

Discussion in 'Computers' started by John Watson, Feb 19, 2006.

  1. John Watson

    John Watson Screenwriter

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    I have an old small computer, and in recent days it has been abnormally loud, as tho fan bearings are gone? But today, to my surpise, it has quieted right down, and is so quiet, I'm starting to think a fan has actually stopped running.

    If so, any ideas on how much operation might I expect from it before it overheats dangerously?

    It is a 3 gig computer, circa 1997, using Windows 98. The case doesn't feel unusually warm, and all my functions are performing normally.

    I have backed up all files, and apart from hassle, can afford to replace this computer, I'm just curious, what could be going on?
     
  2. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Well, check the fans on the back, if they're all working, then open up the computer and turn it on. See if the CPU fan is working. What processor is in it? You could probably replace the heatsink/fan without too much trouble, but it might not be worth it for such an old computer.
     
  3. John Watson

    John Watson Screenwriter

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    Thanks. I've just put my hand at the back of the computer, and there is no air current emerging from the back, so maybe that fan is what has failed..

    I'm afraid I'm not the computer opening type. I vaguely understand there are different fans inside, so if its the one at the back, perhaps I'm not going to experience much of a functioning problem, at least at this time of the year?

    You're right, I won't spend anything significant to fix it, I'm just curious whether the hard drive will get damaged, if I limp along for a few days.
     
  4. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Well, most PCs have two fans on the back (I'm not sure if this was the case in '97 as well though). One is for the power supply, the other is just a case fan. If the power supply fan goes out, you need to replace the power supply, or just say good-bye to the computer. If it's the case fan, it probably won't do much damage too quickly.

    The case fan could be easily replaced by you or any local computer repair shop. They shouldn't charge too much to do it. A power supply, on the other hand, could be pretty expensive as you'd probably have to buy it from the computer manufacturer.

    The power supply fan should be right next to where the power cord is attached to your computer.
     
  5. John Watson

    John Watson Screenwriter

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    Thanks for all the info Seth.

    I'll see if I can carry on for a few days. I may post later on how this turns out [​IMG]
     
  6. Paul Padilla

    Paul Padilla Supporting Actor

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    That's usually the case (no pun intended) with brand name machines...Dell, HP, etc. If it's a clone (home built or local shop built) then it should be a standard AT or ATX power supply which shouldn't go over $50. Since you're not a computer opening type then installation would be in addition to that.

    The power supply fan not working is a more risky than just overheating the computer. That fan not only expels warm air, but cools the power supply itself. I've seen capacitors pop from overheating this way and in those cases it took out other components right down to the hard disk drive itself. If you have any interest in keeping this machine I'd get it replaced or just retire it and jump in and get a new one. (Awesome that you've backed up your data by the way. You're one of the few.)

    If it's a brand name unit, check their website for prices and if it's worth it, order the part and take it to a local shop to have it swapped out.
     

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