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Case Fans -- optional or required component?

Posted on 2006-11-13
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Last Modified: 2013-11-10
Hi experts,

A case fan in my Pentium IV 3 GHz computer recently died. Should I really replace? Why or why not? It works fine without one... What's my risk if not replacing? Substantial or not very (scale of 1-10, 10 being highest risk).

Thanks!
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Question by:sow56091
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7 Comments
 
LVL 9

Expert Comment

by:JamesTX10
ID: 17933186
Hi sow56091,
Depends on your case, what you have in the case, what the normal room temp is, ect.

In general I would replace the fan. They do not cost much and help to keep your computer cooler.

JamesTX10
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LVL 69

Expert Comment

by:Callandor
ID: 17933237
In the grand scheme of risk/reward, a case fan costs very little and can do a lot to reduce temperatures inside the case.  Heat is the enemy of electronics and hard drives, so I would replace it.  How hot it can get inside the case depends on many factors, as JamesTX10 said.
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LVL 13

Expert Comment

by:Caseybea
ID: 17933722
A case fan's job is to keep the air moving-- and thus, the case cool.   When the case is cool, the heat generated by the processor has a place to go-- and then keeps the processor cool, and happy.   (Actually, the same applies to your hard drives, your graphics card, etc etc..)

In your case, you have a PIV 3Ghz-- my guess it's probably a "Prescott" CPU-- which tend to run QUITE hot.

Sure-- you can run most processors (and that one) without a case fan--  but you'll end up shortening the life of the processor-- and ultimately, it could fail from constantly being too warm/hot.     A case fan is an extremely CHEAP investment to keep your system performing well.   Note:  Don't go for the "cheapest" fan(s)-- get one that's quality and designed to last (quality bearings, etc).   Even the "expensive" ones only run 10 bucks or so.

Additional note:  As long as you're replacing your fan- you might want to consider one that has integrated lighting.   They're not much more expensive, and (depdnding on the case you have)- can give a real cool-looking erie light for all to see.  Just a thought.

For installation:  Case fans usually are designed to suck air in the front of the case, and send the hot air out the rear.  Make sure you install the fan correctly when you drop in the replacement.


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LVL 2

Expert Comment

by:zerathosthegreat
ID: 17934768
In general - No, It wouldnt really matter, some case fans dont do anything anyway.

But in your case, Yes, get the fan. If you only have one, and it dies, you need it back. I mean, I didnt have one for a long long time, but adding them lowered my temps by 10c And thats huge in the PC world
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LVL 44

Accepted Solution

by:
scrathcyboy earned 2000 total points
ID: 17935730
If your CPU temperature is under 47 degrees C, ignore the case fan, it is just more noise and more watts burned up every hour.
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Expert Comment

by:mschiff6
ID: 17957232
The case fans generally run in three sizes 80mm 90mm and 120mm.
The 80mm fans run about $3-$4 dollars.   While it is not critical at a P4 3.0 it would certainlly be recomended.  Lower temps extend the life of the  components.  When it comes to P4 3.4's many case sold have the side vent and deflector for the cpu fan exhaust.  Also
most intel fans are variable speed.  The warmer it gets in the case the faster (and therefore louder) the cpu fan will get.
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LVL 3

Author Comment

by:sow56091
ID: 18017499
Yes, the CPU temp runs at about 35 Celcius... Thanks!
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