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SOLVED: Fan sounding like a tractor

X230 through X280, plus X390 series specific matters only
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TOTAL
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SOLVED: Fan sounding like a tractor

#1 Post by TOTAL » Thu Mar 19, 2020 6:39 pm

Hi
I have bought a refurbished thinkpad x230 and all seems fine except that the fan has soon started sounding like a tractor.

At maximum level 7, it keeps CPU at 43 degrees, which is probably not bad apart from being worse from the other x230 model I had with the same processor.

Is it something to be worried about, ie. does this indicate a risk of the fan reaching its end of life? I would expect the laptop (still being on a 30 day warranty) was cleaned before it was sold to me. I wrote to eBay seller but they did not answer. Not sure what is happening, maybe they have withheld operations.

How would repairing this issue look like? Can something be done about the existing fan, or does a replacement need to be installed?

Thanks
Last edited by TOTAL on Wed Mar 25, 2020 3:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

axur-delmeria
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Re: Fan sounding like a tractor

#2 Post by axur-delmeria » Thu Mar 19, 2020 7:28 pm

Best you can do is clean and lubricate the fan. If that doesn't fix it, you'll need to replace it.

Also, it's a bad idea to have the fan running at full speed all the time, as it will hasten its wear and tear.
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kfzhu1229
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Re: Fan sounding like a tractor

#3 Post by kfzhu1229 » Thu Mar 19, 2020 11:23 pm

Depending on your luck, you may or may not have a AVC branded fan on the X230 which *CANNOT* be lubed.
When performing maintenance my dad's X230 with a loud fan, I have the unfortunate experience of having the AVC branded fan. But I also discovered that the fan has broken off blades anyways so I ordered a replacement.
However, one other thing I should point out that you *CANNOT* replace the AVC fan with the other fans. They are all of different shapes AND they might even come with a different connector. I have even seen X220/X230 fans with either a 3 pin or a 4 pin connector. Even if you are replacing the heatsink assembly as a whole, you need to take note on whether you have a 3 pin or 4 pin fan connector.
Not sure what's going on with the quality of the fans that they use in these things but my dad and my mum have X230 and X220i respectively, and both fans failed in one way or another.
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TOTAL
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Re: Fan sounding like a tractor

#4 Post by TOTAL » Fri Mar 20, 2020 7:44 am

Thanks for your answer. It would not have occurred to me there might be different types of fan per one model of laptop. The first type in use must have been a disaster!

TOTAL
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Re: Fan sounding like a tractor

#5 Post by TOTAL » Fri Mar 20, 2020 7:54 am

As for the fan being at top speed, this advice I read somewhere on the net, the rationale being that this would extend the lifespan of the more expensive electronics. Poster wrote that fans did not tend to get broken on x230.

kfzhu1229
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Re: Fan sounding like a tractor

#6 Post by kfzhu1229 » Fri Mar 20, 2020 1:33 pm

TOTAL wrote:
Fri Mar 20, 2020 7:54 am
As for the fan being at top speed, this advice I read somewhere on the net, the rationale being that this would extend the lifespan of the more expensive electronics. Poster wrote that fans did not tend to get broken on x230.
If your fan is already in a bad shape and that you already ordered a replacement from China, you might as well blast it high (maybe not Fan 7 or 64, try fan 5 instead) since you don't have anything to lose for doing that.
But again, before you order a replacement (whether it is fan only or an entire heatsink), you have to check what kind of fan that is currently in your system.
If it is something like a Delta branded one and not an AVC branded like mine, try peeling off the manufacturer's sticker and see if there is an opening underneath that allows you to drip oil into.
Dell Lat CP MMX-233 64mb 40gb W2k
600 PII-266 416mb 40gb WXP
T23 PIII 1.13ghz 1gb W7
Lat D830 X9000 8gb 160gb WUXGA Ultrasharp fp W10
T530i 15.6" i7 16gb fp W10
UXGA:
A30p PIII 1.2 1gb W7 (IDTech)
T43p 2.26 2gb fp W10 (Sharp)
Lat C840 P4-2.5 2gb 60gb W7 (Ultrasharp)

TOTAL
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Jan 05, 2017 12:09 pm
Location: London, UK

Re: Fan sounding like a tractor

#7 Post by TOTAL » Wed Mar 25, 2020 3:56 pm

OK. I have heard back from the seller who is happy to get this fixed. I will ask about the fan type as this gets done.

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