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Machine overheating?

rletham 17 890 United Kingdom
22 Jun 2005 12:41AM
One of our computers seems to be overheating. It will shut itself down and you can't boot it for a few hours. This time period is shortened if you put the computer in a cool place. I have looked at the heat sink and fan and there was a lot of dust in the heatsink slats so I've cleaned it all out. Question: the fan seems to be blowing air away from the heat sink. Should it not blow cold air ON to it? Has my machine had its fan put on back to front?

Motherboard: ASRock K7SBX
Chip: Athlon XP2400
Fan: Mentor ball bearing POWER COOLER.
raziel_uk 17 4.9k
22 Jun 2005 12:46AM
It may be that the fan isn't working as effectively as it should or perhaps it's actually the power supply.

Also with the hot spell we're currently having it's not near a window or where the sun can shine directly on it is it? As this can make a vast difference.

To be honest I think you would be better off in the long run actually getting it looked at. It's all well and good thinking and hoping it may only be a temporary problem but it could be a symptom of something more serious.

digicammad 18 22.0k 40 United Kingdom
22 Jun 2005 12:48AM
The fan is supposed to draw the hot air away from the heatsink, so it is set up okay. Check the fan on the case, which is supposed to extract the air from the case altogether, that may be blocked or not working.

rletham 17 890 United Kingdom
22 Jun 2005 1:09AM
Thanks, it was a second hand machine and I just wanted to be sure the fan was the right way around. I've just taken it apart and cleaned the heat sink and fan. It still won't boot at the moment but I know it will. Hopefully the clean will prevent this happening again. Or at least until the dust builds back up;o)
raziel_uk 17 4.9k
22 Jun 2005 1:12AM
Really, I mean this - don't let this carry on "knowing" it will boot up eventually. The situation could become critical or to the point where the PC doesn't start at all.

I was having problems with my work PC last week, it wouldn't switch on for several minutes and then I'd press the on button one more time and "bingo". Of course because I needed to get a job finished I didn't bother to get it sorted straight away.

Monday and Tuesday it took between 15 minutes and 1/2 hour (respectively) of pressing the on button every couple of minutes.

Wednesday? Nothing for over three hours! Took it to the chap I always use and got it repaired. It needed a whole new power supply unit!

laura16 18 606
22 Jun 2005 1:29AM
I agree with ashley, you should get it looked at, after all you can guarantee the one time you need it, it won't come on at all!! I had a dodgy computer with an intermittent problem and it was always the times I needed to use it for something when it played up!
Cephus 16 2.6k England
22 Jun 2005 1:31AM
I had a very similar promlem with my PC which was caused by a faulty power supply unit.

UserRemoved 17 4.2k
22 Jun 2005 1:31AM
Rab, it depends on the siting of the machine, in this case you need to have it out in the open somewhere away from radiators and with airflow past it.

Check the fans on the case. The main fan (buy a new one if necessary - I do every year or so - only a couple of quid - cos my machine is in a bad place and I've turned the radiator off), and the PSU fans (not a lot you can do with them)

If needs be buy a second chassis fan to improve airflow.
mark a. 17 920 United Kingdom
22 Jun 2005 1:41AM
As a cheap alternative to buying fans, power supplies etc, just pour some water over the machine to cool it down.
raziel_uk 17 4.9k
22 Jun 2005 1:51AM

Phil-LS 18 632 United Kingdom
22 Jun 2005 1:58AM
I had a similar problem at the start of the year. I just left it and in the end it cost me a new machine.

The clip that held the heat sink on came detached from the board and it ended up cooking the hole lot. All i have left of my old machine is the disc drives, they couldn't even retrieve anything from the hard drive. :o(
rletham 17 890 United Kingdom
22 Jun 2005 2:37AM
Thanks guys,

I know that it's the heat sink, fan or psu so I might just replace them. They are cheap after all. Will try the cpu fan first and then the heat sink and then the psu if necessary. I'm no expert but having years in a computer development job, I've no fear of stripping out components and replacing them.

Joe: the unit is not near a radiator and is away from direct light but it is under the desk and lacks air circulation methinks.
UserDeleted 18 3.6k
22 Jun 2005 2:59AM
I'd go for the PSU first.

I had the same problem 4 months ago. Couldn't have believed it was the PSU but it was !

rletham 17 890 United Kingdom
22 Jun 2005 3:43AM
Does anyone know of a freeware program that monitors the cpu temp and lets you know if it's starting to get too hot? That way, I can see if it's the heatsink and fan first.

EDIT: I am also looking to update all my equipment so does anyone know a good supplier that will build me some new machines to my specs? Someone near Wimbledon would be even better.
UserDeleted 18 3.6k
22 Jun 2005 3:57AM
They tend to come with the motherboard/chipset, or in the pack of disks with a machine.

If you go to the manufacturers webpage for the motheerboard/chipset then you may find it in the downloads or support section....


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