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x61s: fan error

X60/X61 series specific matters only.
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cbrace
Posts: 14
Joined: Tue Oct 01, 2019 10:33 am
Location: Amsterdam, NL

x61s: fan error

#1 Post by cbrace » Mon Jan 20, 2020 4:40 pm

Hi all

I recently acquired an X61s. The fan was rather noisy, so I ordered a replacement. This afternoon I sat down with a guy I know who has more experience with repairs than I do.

We dismantled the X61s and re-did the CPU cooling paste. The replacement fan turned out to the wrong one, it didn't fit. So we put a drop of sewing machine on the bearings of the original fan and reinstalled it.

Before reattaching the palm rest, we booted the Thinkpad several times. It booted fine, the fan was now a lot quieter and the laptop seemed to run slightly cooler.

We then reassembled everything. Booting for a final check, we suddenly started getting a "fan error" and the thing wouldn't start up. Take a look inside, the fan appeared to spin so it wasn't a loose cable or something similar.

I can order a new fan, no problem. But before I do I thought I would ask here if anyone has any ideas why a fan error would suddenly appear like this. It seems kinda random.

TIA

axur-delmeria
Senior ThinkPadder
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Joined: Mon May 28, 2012 5:49 am
Location: Metro Manila, Philippines

Re: x61s: fan error

#2 Post by axur-delmeria » Tue Jan 21, 2020 10:35 am

The BIOS tests the fan on startup. I'm not 100% sure on this, but perhaps there's an acceptable RPM range per fan speed setting, and the BIOS spits out an error if it gets an anomalous RPM reading.
Another possibility is that the wire that carries the RPM signal broke-- this is a 12 year old laptop after all.
Daily driver: X220 4291-C91 i7-2620M

Backup: X601 Core 2 Duo T8100
Toy: X60F Core Solo U1300
On loan: X220 4291-P79 i5-2520M
In pieces: two retired but working X61Ts
RIP: 760XD 9546-U9E; X61 7676-A24; and a BOE-Hydis HV121P01-100 in failed SXGA+ mod
:cry:

cbrace
Posts: 14
Joined: Tue Oct 01, 2019 10:33 am
Location: Amsterdam, NL

Re: x61s: fan error

#3 Post by cbrace » Tue Jan 21, 2020 1:55 pm

Thanks for the helpful reply. I will order a replacement fan assembly and hope that the RPM signal works again, if that is indeed the problem.

tom lightbody
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Posts: 356
Joined: Fri Jul 07, 2006 1:07 am
Location: cleveland

Re: x61s: fan error

#4 Post by tom lightbody » Wed Jan 22, 2020 12:03 pm

> fan error

when my x61 does that, I find hitting "esc" brings it up booting OK.
the way up and the way down are the same (heraclitus)

axur-delmeria
Senior ThinkPadder
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Posts: 2407
Joined: Mon May 28, 2012 5:49 am
Location: Metro Manila, Philippines

Re: x61s: fan error

#5 Post by axur-delmeria » Wed Jan 22, 2020 12:08 pm

tom lightbody wrote:
Wed Jan 22, 2020 12:03 pm
> fan error

when my x61 does that, I find hitting "esc" brings it up booting OK.
Does your X61 have the 2nd fan, to the left of the WiFi card? Most likely yes, because AFAIK a Fan error triggered by a failing 2nd fan can be bypassed with the Esc key, but a Fan error tirggered by the heatsink fan will shut off the laptop after a few seconds.
Daily driver: X220 4291-C91 i7-2620M

Backup: X601 Core 2 Duo T8100
Toy: X60F Core Solo U1300
On loan: X220 4291-P79 i5-2520M
In pieces: two retired but working X61Ts
RIP: 760XD 9546-U9E; X61 7676-A24; and a BOE-Hydis HV121P01-100 in failed SXGA+ mod
:cry:

dr_st
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Joined: Sat Oct 29, 2005 6:20 am
Location: Israel

Re: x61s: fan error

#6 Post by dr_st » Wed Jan 22, 2020 2:29 pm

I think every Fan Error can be bypassed with Esc. It's not a generally good idea to run without a working main fan for more than a few minutes, though.
Thinkpad 25 (20K7), X1 Carbon (20HQ), Yoga 14 (20FY), T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X220 4291-4BG
X61 7673-V2V, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G, X32 (IPS Screen), A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad, A21m 2628-GXU

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