Your laptop has become an integral part of your life as you do almost all your work on it. One day you put on your dear laptop and suddenly you hear a strange noise, it’s your laptop fan.
So, you might wonder, Why is my laptop fan so loud?
One of the most common causes of a loud laptop fan is dust! Regardless of how new or old a laptop is, once dust and dirt accumulate within the device, it affects the smooth rotation of the fan’s blades. This in turn leads to loud noises as the fan exerts more pressure to function. I suggest that you learn how to fix this problem. Changing the laptop doesn’t mean you are completely safe.
Your new laptop could also develop the same issue after some time. Would you toss that one too? We put together this post to help you fix the issues with laptop fan that making loud noise.
6 Reasons Why your Laptop Fan Making Loud Noise
If you are conversant with laptops, you will know that the fan is its loudest component.
The speed of this component is directly proportional to the amount of heat the laptop needs to dissipate.
It is normal for some laptop fans to be louder than others. However, if the sound suddenly spikes you need to check the cause.
It is either something is interfering with your hardware or there are certain changes to your software. Let’s take a brief look at the causes of an abnormally loud laptop fan.
1: Dust accumulation leading to blocked vents and dirty fans
As your computer gets older, it is bound to overheat more than before. It is at more risk if you are faithful to regularly cleaning the vents.
When the vents are clogged with a lot of dust, your fan is more likely to spin faster. This is also a sign of how poorly you have cared for your laptop in recent times.
Another reason why you may have blocked vents is using the laptop on a soft surface or your lap. But it is a laptop, why can’t you use it on your lap?
The answer to this question is simple. When you do, you reduce the air circulation that your laptop needs. The result of this is the faster spinning of the fan which results in more noise.
2: Software and stressed resources
System overload is another likely reason why your laptop fan is so loud. When you change your operating system or you install certain background software, you may increase the load on your laptop.
What this does is that it stresses your resources making them heat up. Like we stated earlier, your fans will work more in this sort of situation.
You must take note of the specific action that triggered the loud spinning of your fans.
Some of the possible software actions include editing videos or photos, gaming, or watching videos. All of these put more stress on your laptop than surfing the web.
In some cases, the problem may come from running two or more heavy software at the same time.
3: The impending failure of your hard drive
For some people, this is even scarier. The source of that loud noise may be your hard drive, not the fans.
This is why it is important to always notice the noise and what area of your laptop it is coming from.
Check to see if the noise is coming from the area close to the hard drive. It is quite easy to notice because of the clicking, whirring, or grinding sound you are likely to hear.
The moment you notice this, don’t waste time backing up your data.
The major cause of failing hard drives is the failure of the components within the drives. This usually results in louder hard drives. What do you in this case? Change the hard drive into a newer model.
How to fix loud laptop fan making noise
Now that you know what causes loud laptop fan, how do you fix this? It is rocket science and you should find these tips really helpful.
1: Take out the dust
What is the common cause of loud fans on laptops? Your guess is as good as mine, dust. Many people, just like you, are wary of opening their laptops for cleaning.
The probable reason is that laptops are a tad more complex than desktops. For this reason, you should learn to open your laptop and clean the cooler.
When dust accumulates on your laptop, it can cause damage to your laptop in several ways. The commonest cause is the obstruction of the blades.
This obstruction causes the spinning to be louder which in turn increases the noise.
The heart of your laptop is its processor and for this reason, you need to clean its cooler regularly.
If you don’t, dust is bound to damage it in a variety of ways. The idea is blowing out the dust at least once each year to ensure efficient working.
Right now, you are probably wondering, why do I have to open my laptop myself? If you are not up to this task, you can have a professional handle it on your behalf.
However, if you think you can do it on your own, we have put together some simple steps to help you out. All you need is a small-size screwdriver.
- Step 1 – Turn the laptop off and unplug it from the mains.
- Step 2 – Flip your laptop so that its backside is up.
- Step 3 – Take out your laptop battery.
- Step 4 – Look for the air vent around the outer edge.
- Step 5 – Open it by unscrewing the panel.
- Step 6 – The fan should be exposed by now.
- Step 7 – Blow the dust out. You should carry out this exercise outdoors so that you don’t get your space dirty. For a better job, use a different fan for the blowing process.
If your laptop is still under warranty, we advise that you don’t open it. This is because opening the laptop may void the warranty.
In this case, it is better to seek professional help to handle the process. By the way, you should know that a new laptop can also have a loud laptop fan.
Once you are done blowing out the dust, your laptop fan shouldn’t make so much noise anymore. Of course, that is if dust was the primary cause of the noisy fan in the first place.
As you can tell, your laptop will also become faster when the temperature and pressure is lower
2: Find and destroy any malware present
When you have malware on your laptop, it can be really annoying. It is even worse when you lack access to a top-quality antivirus.
Malware are viruses that cause your laptop to drag. Beyond this, they also raise the temperature of your machine.
This is because your laptop will be making a futile effort to respond to your commands.
The extra stress and pressure will automatically make your laptop produce louder noise even if the processes are very simple. In this case, we suggest you get a good antivirus if you don’t already have one.
Surf the net and you will see several free downloadable antivirus programs. Many of these have a premium version that offers better protection.
Right now what you need is to know how to find the malware on your laptop. Here is a simple procedure to help you out.
Open the task manager of your laptop and check the process tab. If you notice any strange letters or processes, or you notice chaotic order, then you are dealing with viruses.
As soon as you discover a strange process, check it out on Google. If you find info about it, then it should be legitimate, else, it must be malware.
The moment you take care of the viruses, it will become easier for your laptop to run applications.
Processes will also run easily which will reduce the pressure on your laptop. Through this, you will be solving your loud laptop fan problem.
3: End some processes
Do you work a lot with your laptop? Then you are likely to have so many processes open at the same time, even those you aren’t using.
What this implies is that part of your RAM and processor is dedicated to these processes.
You might think that because they are working behind the scenes, they have no effect on your laptop.
Actually, they have a huge effect as they consume a part of the laptop memory and stress to run them.
Many of these processes will lead to excess heat in the laptop making the fan make extra noise. You should know at this point that many of these processes are not your fault.
It is easy to notice this when you open your laptop’s task manager. You’ll see so many processes that you didn’t start running.
These processes slow your system and cause a loud laptop fan. If you are currently facing this issue, let’s help you solve it.
For each tab you open on Google Chrome, a new process begins in your task manager. You can fix this by setting the browser to create one process for all the tabs you are using at a time.
Simply go the Start menu of your Google Chrome then select “properties.” Click on the task box labeled “target” then scroll down to the last line.
After this, insert this phrase “--process-per-site” after the current text then you click “Apply.”
This should sort out your many processes issue but there is a twist to this. There are certain cases where the problem of many processes is a result of your action.
A typical example is opening several YouTube tabs to listen to songs at the same time. Another example is playing a couple of games at the same time.
All these actions will push your processor to work to the fullest capacity. As a result of this, your laptop will make a lot of noise.
To fix this, open the Task Manager and visit your process tab. Take out the process you are not interested in running anymore.
If you notice a grinding noise, then your problem is likely not software-related. Let’s help you with a few steps to fix this problem. If the next steps don’t fix this, then you have to change the fan.
4: Get an extra cooler
To avoid overheating and make your laptop cool better, simply purchase an extra cooler.
There are coolers designed to sort out this challenge. Getting one of these should sort out your loud laptop fan issue.
When you purchase the cooler, you have to place it beneath your laptop. Extra fans will always make your laptop perform better.
You should invest in this is you run a lot of complex programs on your laptop. In fact, with this, you will not hear any vibrations or buzzing sounds from your laptop anymore.
5: Raise your laptop off its current surface
If you don’t have the cash to spend on a new cooler, you can take this cheaper option. All you need to is elevate the laptop by using a laptop stand.
Cooling fans on laptops are usually placed beneath the laptop. This means that if the airflow is not sufficient, you simply need to raise the laptop.
With this action, the air circulation gets better and your laptop becomes cooler. Thus, the noise reduces and we are all happy.
The beauty of elevation is that you can make use of anything to elevate your machine. This works once you leave enough space for airflow.
By all standards, this is the easiest and cheapest way to deal with the issue loud laptop fan. It will also ensure a more productive processor.
6: Mixing methods
This final tip involves using multiple methods with the aim of making your laptop perform better.
An example is installing an extra cooler, wiping viruses, and shutting down unwanted processes. These will not only reduce noise significantly, but it will also keep your laptop healthy.
Steps to take to prevent loud laptop fan
Since you already know the causes of noisy laptop fans, it is easy to sort out this problem. You can prevent your laptop fan from being noisy with a few precautionary methods.
Let’s check out some of these measures below.
1: Watch out for the temperature
One reason why your fan will make a lot of noise is high temperatures. It simply means that to avoid this, you need to keep your machine cool.
There are several contributors to high temperatures on laptops. We have discussed most of these above so there’s no need to revisit them.
You might not notice the rise in temperature easily but with an app, your job is made easy. These apps monitor temperature thus allowing you to take action when necessary.
You probably haven’t defragged your laptop since you started using it. If you are making use of Windows 8 or 8.1, you shouldn’t have a problem as it is done automatically.
The process helps to cleanse your computer system. It is more like clearing cobwebs.
Many of the times you delete files, what happens is that they change folders. With these bits scattered around, storage space and processor speed reduce drastically.
Defragging helps to fix this by aligning used spaces in rows and columns for easier access. You should defrag at least once every month.
3: Blow out dust frequently
Dust is one of the major causes of loud laptop fan. To avoid this issue, you need to blow out dust frequently.
We have already shown you how to do this earlier in this post. If you feel like you are not up to this task, get professional help.
Before you take apart your machine, be sure that you have read through the directions. Find the directions in the instruction manual or on the website of the laptop manufacturer.
Don’t forget that each manufacturer is different so don’t depend on previous knowledge alone.
4: Clean every part
Most times when we think of cleaning our laptops, we only think of the screen and the vents. Every part of the laptop is important and should be cleaned.
A report released in 2002 stated that keyboards were dirtier than toilets. If you doubt this, ask yourself, when last did you clean yours purposefully.
5: Upgrade your OS
This may sound a bit farfetched but changing your OS can do wonders for your laptop. If you aren’t already making use of Windows 10, you should try making the switch.
There are a lot of fixes that ensure better laptop performance and speed, which is great for your fans.
The issue of loud laptop fan can be really annoying and frustrating. In this post, we have provided you with tips to overcome and avoid this issue.
What else did we leave out? Share them with us in the comments section below.
Jessica is a Acoustical Engineer, currently based in the San Francisco Bay Area in California. After graduating from her degree in Master of Engineering degree in Acoustics from Solent University in 2014, Jessica worked for a few companies before She will be blogging about her past and current experiences in the studio and sharing her journey as she pursues her career goals. She enjoy the balance of work inside and out of the office, solving practical problems on a daily basis as every project is different and requires a different solution, the variety of work (sound insulation testing, background noise survey, mechanical plant commissioning, external plant assessment, plant room breakout assessments) and the mix of independent and team work.