Loreto2018
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#1
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So I've had my laptop for about 5 years now and I think there is a problem with the fan. Whenever I am just surfing the web, it is relatively quiet, however when I start playing YouTube videos or watch Netflix, it starts to get really loud. It never used to do this until recently. Is there anyway to fix the issue in the settings at all? Or do i need to get a new laptop? In terms of software, everything on the laptop works completely fine and it is quite fast and responsive especially considering how long I've had it. (its a HP Envy notebook) Any advice would be appreciated thanks.
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ROTL94
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What's the physical state of the fan? Might just need to clean it.
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Loreto2018
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(Original post by ROTL94)
What's the physical state of the fan? Might just need to clean it.
Is there anyway I tell the physical state of the fan without disassembling it?
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ROTL94
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(Original post by Loreto2018)
Is there anyway I tell the physical state of the fan without disassembling it?
I mean, looking through the fan vent on the bottom with a torch may work but if you haven't cleaned it in 5 years, it's a safe bet that you're going to need to take it apart anyway to clean it, with something soft like a paintbrush.
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999tigger
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(Original post by Loreto2018)
So I've had my laptop for about 5 years now and I think there is a problem with the fan. Whenever I am just surfing the web, it is relatively quiet, however when I start playing YouTube videos or watch Netflix, it starts to get really loud. It never used to do this until recently. Is there anyway to fix the issue in the settings at all? Or do i need to get a new laptop? In terms of software, everything on the laptop works completely fine and it is quite fast and responsive especially considering how long I've had it. (its a HP Envy notebook) Any advice would be appreciated thanks.
https://support.hp.com/us-en/document/c01007591

More than likely just dust.


Just take the back off and use some canned air to dust off or a light vacuum.

Should be easy to see if theres a lot of dust build up.

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username5383500
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(Original post by Loreto2018)
So I've had my laptop for about 5 years now and I think there is a problem with the fan. Whenever I am just surfing the web, it is relatively quiet, however when I start playing YouTube videos or watch Netflix, it starts to get really loud. It never used to do this until recently. Is there anyway to fix the issue in the settings at all? Or do i need to get a new laptop? In terms of software, everything on the laptop works completely fine and it is quite fast and responsive especially considering how long I've had it. (its a HP Envy notebook) Any advice would be appreciated thanks.
The aforementioned "it just needs a clean" is certainly one option. A couple of others to consider though:

Fans make more noise as they spin faster. The speed they spin at is tied to the temps. Hotter = faster. Dust is one issue as it increases temps (and your fans don't work as well) but the cooling system is made up of more than just a fan. Another potential culprit is the thermal paste on the CPU. The manufacturer applied amount is rarely suitable and it's assumed that you'll never replace it. But it doesn't last forever, and over time you may see temps rise as a result.

Another thing which can impact temperatures is the workload itself. More demanding workloads mean the CPU works harder, generating more heat. Streaming video is certainly more demanding than regular web browsing or word processing, so it'd make sense that YouTube and Netflix are when you're seeing spikes in temperature and therefore increased fan noise. Additionally components are becoming more powerful and everyone is leveraging that. Websites want more resources, your OS is doing more, etc. If you've got a 5 year old laptop, it's entirely possible you've just got an older dual core processor that's showing its age, and needs to work harder to keep up. It's not a reason to upgrade yet, especially if the laptop still meets your needs, just something to be aware of.

A can of air to clean out and dust and debis is the first step here. Perfectly safe, and iFixit probably have a teardown of your laptop if you need help taking it apart (but it's probably just screws on the bottom and maybe clips). From there I'd download RealTemp or another similar application to monitor CPU temps. Laptops do typically run hotter, so temps in the 40s or higher at idle won't be unexpected. But I'd wager they shoot up whenever you load up YouTube or Netflix. It's certainly possible to get those temps down though, which will reduce fan noise.
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RogerOxon
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(Original post by Loreto2018)
So I've had my laptop for about 5 years now and I think there is a problem with the fan. Whenever I am just surfing the web, it is relatively quiet, however when I start playing YouTube videos or watch Netflix, it starts to get really loud. It never used to do this until recently. Is there anyway to fix the issue in the settings at all? Or do i need to get a new laptop? In terms of software, everything on the laptop works completely fine and it is quite fast and responsive especially considering how long I've had it. (its a HP Envy notebook) Any advice would be appreciated thanks.
Start by cleaning it. If it's not much more effort to replace the fan assembly, I'd probably do that instead - they're typically fairly cheap, and the bearings will go eventually. YouTube is a good source of step-by-step videos for this, so that you can see how much work either option is.
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Loreto2018
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(Original post by AcseI)
The aforementioned "it just needs a clean" is certainly one option. A couple of others to consider though:

Fans make more noise as they spin faster. The speed they spin at is tied to the temps. Hotter = faster. Dust is one issue as it increases temps (and your fans don't work as well) but the cooling system is made up of more than just a fan. Another potential culprit is the thermal paste on the CPU. The manufacturer applied amount is rarely suitable and it's assumed that you'll never replace it. But it doesn't last forever, and over time you may see temps rise as a result.

Another thing which can impact temperatures is the workload itself. More demanding workloads mean the CPU works harder, generating more heat. Streaming video is certainly more demanding than regular web browsing or word processing, so it'd make sense that YouTube and Netflix are when you're seeing spikes in temperature and therefore increased fan noise. Additionally components are becoming more powerful and everyone is leveraging that. Websites want more resources, your OS is doing more, etc. If you've got a 5 year old laptop, it's entirely possible you've just got an older dual core processor that's showing its age, and needs to work harder to keep up. It's not a reason to upgrade yet, especially if the laptop still meets your needs, just something to be aware of.

A can of air to clean out and dust and debis is the first step here. Perfectly safe, and iFixit probably have a teardown of your laptop if you need help taking it apart (but it's probably just screws on the bottom and maybe clips). From there I'd download RealTemp or another similar application to monitor CPU temps. Laptops do typically run hotter, so temps in the 40s or higher at idle won't be unexpected. But I'd wager they shoot up whenever you load up YouTube or Netflix. It's certainly possible to get those temps down though, which will reduce fan noise.
Yeah good explanation, that's all true yes. I thought it was the dust too but one strange thing I just discovered today, is that it only makes a loud noise when i'm streaming video ONLY when the charger is plugged in. When I'm using it without the charger the fan seems to be much quieter. Any ideas what the problem could be then? Is my charger at fault perhaps?
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username5383500
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#9
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(Original post by Loreto2018)
Yeah good explanation, that's all true yes. I thought it was the dust too but one strange thing I just discovered today, is that it only makes a loud noise when i'm streaming video ONLY when the charger is plugged in. When I'm using it without the charger the fan seems to be much quieter. Any ideas what the problem could be then? Is my charger at fault perhaps?
TBH depending on the laptop that's quite normal. My Dell XPS fan kicks in if I charge the laptop and use it at the same time. Very unlikely to be a faulty charger. The exact reason is either:
  • Charging the laptop generates more heat. Battery gets hotter, rest of the laptop heats up, fan kicks in. Turn your laptop off and start charging it, you'll no doubt find it get a bit warmer after a while
  • Using the laptop on mains power allows the CPU to run at higher clocks, which also generates more heat. This is a common to preserve battery life when not plugged in, but offer up "full power" when on mains.

It's probably a combination of things really. Streaming being a slightly more demanding task, older laptop CPU needing to work a bit harder nowadays, and increased heat generated while charging. 5 years is pretty good for a battery, but it's probably a bit knackered now. I'd assume you're using it while charging more often as a result, so your average temps are higher and you're noticing the fan more.
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Loreto2018
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(Original post by AcseI)
TBH depending on the laptop that's quite normal. My Dell XPS fan kicks in if I charge the laptop and use it at the same time. Very unlikely to be a faulty charger. The exact reason is either:
  • Charging the laptop generates more heat. Battery gets hotter, rest of the laptop heats up, fan kicks in. Turn your laptop off and start charging it, you'll no doubt find it get a bit warmer after a while
  • Using the laptop on mains power allows the CPU to run at higher clocks, which also generates more heat. This is a common to preserve battery life when not plugged in, but offer up "full power" when on mains.

It's probably a combination of things really. Streaming being a slightly more demanding task, older laptop CPU needing to work a bit harder nowadays, and increased heat generated while charging. 5 years is pretty good for a battery, but it's probably a bit knackered now. I'd assume you're using it while charging more often as a result, so your average temps are higher and you're noticing the fan more.
Yeah true, I'd probably have to just get used to the noise then for a while. I tried cleaning the air vents with a vacuum for dust but there's still noise when it charges. I don't really want to disassemble it now since i've got loads of uni work and assignments due in soon. Also i downloaded a load of games during quarantine on it and that probably caused a load more strain on both the CPU and GPU. And yes I have to pretty much always use it plugged in now cause the battery life has shortened significantly. Even if the fan works harder and makes loads of noise, there's no actual harm caused to the laptop right?
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username5383500
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(Original post by Loreto2018)
Yeah true, I'd probably have to just get used to the noise then for a while. I tried cleaning the air vents with a vacuum for dust but there's still noise when it charges. I don't really want to disassemble it now since i've got loads of uni work and assignments due in soon. Also i downloaded a load of games during quarantine on it and that probably caused a load more strain on both the CPU and GPU. And yes I have to pretty much always use it plugged in now cause the battery life has shortened significantly. Even if the fan works harder and makes loads of noise, there's no actual harm caused to the laptop right?
Avoid using a vaccum. Not only will it generate static (which can kill your computer), there's a small but possible risk of damaging components. Stick to compressed air.

No, there's no actual harm. Providing you aren't seeing crazy high temperatures on the CPU (we're talking constantly 80+) you'll be fine. The noise is annoying, but ultimately it's a sign of the fan doing it's job.

If the fan intakes are on the bottom, might be worth investing in a riser stand like this. If nothing else you'll get better airflow under the laptop and temps will be a little lower. I also prefer having my keyboard angled, but that's personal preference. At the more extreme level, repasting the CPU, blowing out dust and even adding thermal pads may help keep temps down but that'd require disassembly.
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Loreto2018
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(Original post by AcseI)
Avoid using a vaccum. Not only will it generate static (which can kill your computer), there's a small but possible risk of damaging components. Stick to compressed air.

No, there's no actual harm. Providing you aren't seeing crazy high temperatures on the CPU (we're talking constantly 80+) you'll be fine. The noise is annoying, but ultimately it's a sign of the fan doing it's job.

If the fan intakes are on the bottom, might be worth investing in a riser stand like this. If nothing else you'll get better airflow under the laptop and temps will be a little lower. I also prefer having my keyboard angled, but that's personal preference. At the more extreme level, repasting the CPU, blowing out dust and even adding thermal pads may help keep temps down but that'd require disassembly.
Got it, thanks a lot for your help! I'm glad that I don't have to replace it.
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username5383500
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(Original post by Loreto2018)
Got it, thanks a lot for your help! I'm glad that I don't have to replace it.
Providing the temperatures are under control, and the fan isn't making weird noises it won't be a replacement just yet.

But for what it's worth I'd start saving. There's no guarantee you'll need to replace the laptop any time soon, but having the money available when you need it will just take all the stress out of the inevitable replacement. Especially if you end up needing to replace it while still at uni. 5 years is pretty good, and you may well get another 5 out of it. Or it may keep showing its age and in 6 months you don't consider it usable any more.
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