Thinkpad runs hot, should I take the mainboard out to examine the fan ?

Discussion in 'Lenovo' started by abhattal, Mar 26, 2015.

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  1. abhattal

    abhattal Notebook Enthusiast

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    Subject (almost) says it all, it seems my Thinkpad runs quite warm underneath in the corner where the fan is (in fact hot if on a soft surface such as bedding, even if vents are not blocked). I seem to remember it running cool when new, though that was ~4 years ago ! I've never taken the main circuit board out, and to do so involves quite a lot of disassembly I believe. I had the keyboard out, but you can't really get at the fan as it's on the underside.

    So ... I'm wondering if the vents and fan are clogged up - does this happen commonly on laptops, and if so is it beneficial to blow the stuff out (I really don't want to separate the fan from the heatsink) ?. Any other tips or "gotcha's" ? Or is this a case of "don't do it, you'll probably break something" ?
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2015
  2. jcvjcvjcvjcv

    jcvjcvjcvjcv Notebook Evangelist

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    What Thinkpad? The Thinkpads I've opened up never required pulling out the mainboard to get to the fan.

    Cleaning the dust out will never hurt. With both my T61 and W520 I sometimes blow into either of the two main vent areas. Doing so will create a mushroom cloud from the other vent.
     
  3. abhattal

    abhattal Notebook Enthusiast

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    Hmm, maybe a better idea than disassembly. T410s.
     
  4. baii

    baii Sone

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    The x series require that. Just follow the maintenance manual and count your screws.

    Sent from my 306SH
     
  5. Plur

    Plur Notebook Consultant

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    It's always best to give your fan and heatsink a clean. I do so in my machine usually once a month because I'm pedantic.

    After 4yrs I assume there are dust bunnies living on your heatsink and fan. CLEAN IT.
    Also it may require a repaste as no doubt the paste would have degraded (To what extent can only be determined when removing the heatsink from CPU)

    Best of luck restoring your machine to cooler temperatures!
     
  6. abhattal

    abhattal Notebook Enthusiast

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    I haven't yet opened the machine up to clean it out (I am intending to do so though). Instead I blew through the corner vent and a fine cloud of dust flew out of the other side of the corner. Things seemed better (did I reboot ? can't remember, I usually just drop the lid when done, and then resume next time).

    Today the bottom of the machine got warm then reasonably hot whilst doing nothing taxing at all, to the extent the left speaker grille, i.e. the top of the machine was noticeably warm. I couldn't hear the fan at all. I powered it down, then restarted, and the fan kicked in at a brisk speed, did a brief 10 sec pause whilst Windows started, then resumed and kept on going for a good 10-15mins (with Windows up and running), and the machine cooled down. I have no idea why it should behave like this, it does seem very strange.
     
  7. Arog

    Arog Notebook Consultant

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    See how hot the cpu is running. There is this utility called coretemp. If you google and download it you can see the actual temps of the cpu. It's probably normal for a laptop to get hot in some areas, especially say in an area where the heat sink is.

    If you can, report back with idle temps and when doing some cpu intensive tasks, and we can see how hot it's getting. But as other suggested maybe changing the thermal paste is a good idea if you are comfortable with such a task.
     
  8. Bronsky

    Bronsky Wait and Hope.

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    At 4 years old, a disassembly, complete cleaning of the fan and cooling vents and repasting with IC Diamond 7 may be in order. This is especially true if you use your notebook in bed and such. Blowing air in a vent does not always suffice, is a half-assed solution and can damage the fan.

    Before doing that, make sure the fan is working and still blows warm air as the notebook heats up. That tests the thermal material in the heat exchangers. If you're not comfortable doing this yourself, by all means take it to a competent tech.

    Pathologically OCD might be a better description?:cool:
     
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