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How to Stop a Noisy CPU

Updated on October 29, 2012

Causes of Noise in a CPU and how to stop it

Noisy CPU

It is very much irritating to work with a noisy CPU. You will only realize how noisy the machine has been immediately you switch it off. Many people will just assume it provided it is working and they can accomplish what they want. Your computer should be as calm as possible and provide a cool working environment.

What makes CPU noisy?

The major probable causes are;

  • Dust
  • Fan


The Computer will always collect dust regardless of the environment. This is because the air sucked in the CPU can have some tiny particles. After accumulating for some time, it is visible in form of a white-cotton like substance. The dust build up blocks the air vents causing thermal shutdown to the computer. In some cases depending on the environment, dust is collected when cleaning is done and the machines in that room are uncovered. Heat attracts dust particles and the dust can get electronically charged causing short circuit in the motherboard. When the fan blocks or its RPMs are reduced, the processor does not get enough air to cool it hence it heats up and lowers the performance. This is when you will find the computer freezing, you try to give commands but they can't be carried out.

  • Fan

In connection to dust, the fan can slow down or sometimes stop rotating completely. When it stops, it means that there is no heat dissipation thus the heated up air is retained in the CPU. The heat sink which is in direct contact with the Processor becomes heated up without cooling. A cut/disconnected fan power cable can also make the fan to stop working so this also should not be ruled out when diagnosing the causes of overheating.

Now that the noise is there, how do I stop it or prevent it in future?

1. Blowing Dust

Use a dust blower (with compressed air) to blow off the dust from the inside of the CPU. When doing this, ensure that you have a dust mask to prevent the dust from getting into your respiratory system. It is always wise to unplug the power from the mains before doing this. Leave the I/O cards intact when blowing because if removed before blowing, dust can fall in to the bus connectors and cause poor connection after re-installing them. Place your CPU in an open airy place then blow the motherboard as well as the fans both on the CPU and the vent holes in the power supply. This service should be done regularly to prevent the dust build-up.

2. Apply Thermal Paste

Also known as heat sink paste is a gel applied between the heat sink and the processor to help in heat conduction. It does this by filling the tiny air gaps left when the smooth heat sink surface gets into contact with the processor. Remove the heat sink locks to gain the access of removing the processor from the socket.Before applying new paste, make sure you scrap off the old and dried up paste. Apply a small amount of the paste then spread evenly being careful not to spill it on the motherboard.

3. Allow enough air flow

Always make sure that your CPU is placed in a position where there is enough air circulation. Placing it so close to the wall or blocking the air vents can block the air from flowing hence causing overheating.

4. Cover your Computer

It is always advisable to cover your machine when not in use using the dust covers. This will prevent the dust from getting in mostly when the surroundings are being cleaned.

With these practices you will ensure a smooth running of your CPU and at the same time save you a great deal from damages that can be caused by crashing.


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