Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


strange noise from PC

  1. #21


    In the military we called them gremlins.
    Yes and I have met a few of them too.

    We may be sidetracking a bit, but these are valid concerns about fans. Using compressed air to make them spin while cleaning is not good because they can be forced to spin much faster than design limits and damage the bearings. So holding them stationary when blasting is essential. But of course, you would not, or should not be blasting with power applied so stopping a spinning fan here is not an issue.

    But when trying to isolate fan noise with "live" electronics, altering the rotation speeds to change the pitch of the sound can be helpful. Using some device to isolate and channel the sound to our ears can help too - hence the straw/paper towel tube trick.

    But I advise against sticking a screwdriver in to the heart of "live" electronics. Screwdrivers are hardened steel, highly conductive, and sharp. One slip can result in gouging out a Grand Canyon sized gorge (microscopically speaking) across several circuit traces or other components on the motherboard - or coming into contact with live circuits, creating shorts. Hence my recommendation to use a wooden Popsicle/glue stick.

    The old mechanics trick using a long screwdriver does work, but you have to turn your head to put your ear to the butt of the screwdriver handle, losing sight of where you are putting the hard, sharp, conductive, tip. And again, one slip and irreparable damage may result. If you want to use the screwdriver trick, I would encourage you use a long wooden dowel instead. Not metal objects.

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #22


    Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts : 6,490
    Windows 10 Education 64 Bit


    Good advice. I've only ever put the screwdriver on the fan's outer case where there are no moving parts and nothing to short out. Or the power supply's case which is grounded. Same deal for a video card, I just touch the heat sink. I place the tip then listen. Like you say though, a chop stick or something similar will work. Keep in mind though that wood also conducts electricity, and a chop stick won't have the non conductive handle a screw driver has. That being said there isn't much on a PC motherboard that you could touch that would give you a shock. The only high voltages are in the power supply and you would have to open it to get at those.
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  3. #23


    N.Y.
    Posts : 2,214
    Windows 10 Pro 64bit


    Gremlins, huh ? Who took that screw i lost once before looked high and low for it !!

    Well,thanks for all the tutorials on do's and don'ts. Most likely the culprit is Video card as sound does occur, but again very intermittently when video card speeds up on restarts and mostly after PC been on awhile, not when it is cool been off for many hours. As said could be bad bearing in one fan as it has dual fans. And this process of it speeding up as you may know i have mentioned is normal test of card at boot or restart, from BIOS.

    Only other thought might be PSU, not sure how to check this, unless i had another to test it with. Ways check it's voltage if that will tell me anything. Both Video card and PSU not even a year old.
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  4. #24


    Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts : 6,490
    Windows 10 Education 64 Bit


    On some cooling fans you can get access to the bearing by carefully pealing back the stick on label in the center of the fan blades. A couple of drops of sewing machine oil or WD 40 may be all you need to keep it quiet for another year or two, or more. If it works its a cheap fix. I've done it a couple of times when I didn't have the cash on hand to buy a new video card. If your careful you can stick the label back down when your done to keep the dust out.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #25


    N.Y.
    Posts : 2,214
    Windows 10 Pro 64bit


    Quote Originally Posted by alphanumeric View Post
    On some cooling fans you can get access to the bearing by carefully pealing back the stick on label in the center of the fan blades. A couple of drops of sewing machine oil or WD 40 may be all you need to keep it quiet for another year or two, or more. If it works its a cheap fix. I've done it a couple of times when I didn't have the cash on hand to buy a new video card. If your careful you can stick the label back down when your done to keep the dust out.
    Sorry no stickers EVGA - Products - EVGA GeForce GTX 660 FTW w/ EVGA ACX Cooler - 02G-P4-3063-KR

    Posted this couple posts back if you saw it, card i have. Had disconnected other case fans to rule them out, both Noctua's. Real quiet made well.
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  6. #26


    Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts : 6,490
    Windows 10 Education 64 Bit


    OK, just a thought. Case fans are cheap and easy to replace, hardly worth the effort. But replacing an expensive Video card just because of a noisy fan is no fun. Replacing the video card fan, if even possible, could be a real pain too and expensive.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #27


    N.Y.
    Posts : 2,214
    Windows 10 Pro 64bit


    Quote Originally Posted by alphanumeric View Post
    OK, just a thought. Case fans are cheap and easy to replace, hardly worth the effort. But replacing an expensive Video card just because of a noisy fan is no fun. Replacing the video card fan, if even possible, could be a real pain too and expensive.
    True case fans are cheaper, although Noctua's are not the cheapest ones, but one of best, real quiet. Just doing your straw idea, i used a tube.
    Rebooted several times, no noises. Kind of hard laying on floor, and needed leave case closed because this is when it happens only. All sounded fine. Maybe compressed air caused problem and it worked itself out, some liquids got on inside fan, maybe!

    Keep trying see how it goes, thanks guys !!
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  8. #28


    this happened to me on my new pc, it was a cable touching the fan
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  9. #29


    N.Y.
    Posts : 2,214
    Windows 10 Pro 64bit


    Quote Originally Posted by elbmek View Post
    this happened to me on my new pc, it was a cable touching the fan
    One my first thoughts too or something else was touching it, i became pretty good with cable management inside case.
    One issue with these video cards nowadays i they take up 2 slots, which makes it very close to my other PCI sound card, not enough slots left to move it away.

    1 x PCI - Have a TV tuner card , near bottom of case

    2 x PCI-e x 1 Sound card , second to the bottom of case + one part taken up by Video card

    1 x PCI-e x 16 Video card

    Well, still been testing it, so far noises (Gremlins) are not there.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #30


    It may also happen when different fan speeds get their sounds into resonance and suddenly a new sound which you could not hear before becomes audible. It happens a lot with other things, multiengined propeller planes for instance are most audible examples. It may explain why you had different sounds with case closed and opened.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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strange noise from PC
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