Bad Vibrations

Published on April 14, 2007

I’ve noted over the past few weeks that my computer at home has picked up a vibration. Every so often, it gets to be so bad that the case actually rattles. The only possible cause is one of the many cooling fans, and I’m guessing that my Zalman VGA cooler is the culprit (though I’m not completely certain). When I installed the Zalman, I opted not to use the variable fan speed control, choosing instead to run the fan at full speed all the time. What’s odd is that my last video card, which also ran with a Zalman cooler, didn’t have this issue. Perhaps this second cooler isn’t as well balanced? Should I install the fan speed control to throttle down the fan speed? Or could it be another fan altogether? Whatever it is, I’ve certainly got to spend some time troubleshooting the issue; it’s driving me crazy!

Update: It looks like the Zalman cooler is not the culprit (score another point for Zalman!). I installed the FanMate speed controller, turned the speed all the way down, and the vibration was still present. I’m now suspecting my stock CPU cooler (the one that came with my AMD processor). Also, when I was inside the computer, I noted that the case’s side panel supports were bent out ever so slightly, so I bent them back. Now the vibration has turned into a constant hum! Perhaps it’s time for a new case?

One Comment

z

Check your fans one by one. Take a pencil eraser and apply enough pressure to the hub of your fans to slow them down.

For PSU fan – With the computer off, stick a popsicle stick or something like that in there just far enough to stop the fan blades from spinning, and fire it up.

Good luck!

-z

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