Fan won't stop on my MacBook

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Rahsten, Feb 7, 2008.

  1. Rahsten macrumors regular


    Mar 13, 2007
    I wasn't so concerned about this until my wife started complaining about my MacBook being so noisy... The fan didn't used to be always running. I think it was after I upgraded to OS X 10.5 that the fan decided it would just always be running. I have my MacBook on all the time and usually the applications that are open are, Firefox(with 10 active TABs), iTunes, Azureus, VLC and Mail (and Widgets). It used to only come on if Azureus was real busy. Now the fan will start up soon after I boot up and will even keep running when I close all Apps and only have the Finder open.

    What can I do to regulate my fan? It doesn't seem to want to control itself. Also, my MacBook never feels overheated. I used to have an iBook and that thing got hot. MacBook with constantly running fan fees real cool in comparison so I don't think the fan needs to be constantly running.

    Any tips or suggestions as to what I can do would be appreciated.:apple:
  2. rogair macrumors member

    Dec 1, 2007
    Have you completed all software updates? Try resetting your PRAM. (hold down CMD+Option+P+R before the startup chime is heard).

    You can use smcFanControl to monitor your fans. Google it.
  3. Rahsten thread starter macrumors regular


    Mar 13, 2007
    Thanks. I did reset the PRAM and I have gotten all the updates. That didn't change anything.

    I just installed smcFanControl. It says the temperature is between 55-65 degrees C. And the fan is running at about 4000-5000 RPM. So, I lowered the minimum to 1500 RPM. Is that what I should do with this application? The RPM reading is now about 3000 but Temperature is fluctuating between 60 and 70. What should the temperature be? Is this too hot?

    It is quieter though, mind you, only Firefox is open.
  4. mckyvlle macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2007
    London, UK
    That does seem quite hot, especially if you only have Firefox open. Would you happen to have Flash running inside Firefox? That's a processor hog.

    You could try using Activity Monitor to see what else is using up processor cycles.
  5. Rahsten thread starter macrumors regular


    Mar 13, 2007
    No Flash running in Firefox.

    I now have Azureus and VLC open. As well, Activity Monitor.

    Under CPU column:

    Azureus 7.0 to 9.5
    Firefox 6.9 to 13.5
    VLC 0.5 to 1.0
    Activity Monitor 2.0
    Finder 0.0 to 88.5

    Finder seems to display very erratic CPU readings in Activity Monitor. Is that normal.

    Under System Memory (1.25 GB)


    Free 270
    Wired 250
    Active 550
    Inactive 210
    Used 1000+

    With only those above applications open. It seems excessive does it not?:apple:

    By the way, with smcFanControl running now I am seeing 65-75 degree C and 6200+ RPM
  6. lshirase macrumors regular

    Jan 7, 2008
    isn't the fan always supposed to be on? (excluding when its in sleep mode / shut down).
  7. sidharth80 macrumors member

    Jan 30, 2008
    I also have a macbook 2.2 Ghz and 2 GB RAM, it heats upto 89 C during load ie. importing photos into iphoto or running VMware fusion. is this normal?

    Any suggestions..
  8. mckyvlle macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2007
    London, UK
    That would seem odd. Your Finder is doing something to user processor cycles... I'm not a Mac OS X guru by any means. Sure would like to help you out more, but I don't know what Finder is doing over there.

    I noticed that you have the CD MacBooks, those earlier MacBooks do run hotter than the later C2D ones.

    Yes, that is perfectly normal. Under load, the CPU will heat up.

    If I'm not mistaken, the fan will stop if the CPU is cold enough. Don't have any hard figures though.
  9. Rahsten thread starter macrumors regular


    Mar 13, 2007
    Yeah, it's always supposed to be on, but not necessarily maxing out the RPM 24/'s real noisy. A nice constant 2000-3000 RPM would be nice...and quiet....i want that.

    It never ran maxed for 24/7 before installing 10.5.

    Has anyone tried FanControl (not smcFanControl) ? Would that be better for limiting when my fan comes on and how many RPM it runs at?
  10. maxterpiece macrumors 6502a


    Mar 5, 2003
    i have this same problem on my macbook c2d 2ghz w/ 1gb ram. Fans go to max speed within about 30 seconds of waking from sleep or booting, and will stay that way even with nothing open but finder. Actually it started messing up a while ago, called apple and had them send me a box, then it stopped, and it was fine for like 3 months.

    Now a few weeks ago it started again. I thought maybe it was a result of ants going into my computer (ants love to go in sleeping computers apparently - google it), and that the problem fixed itself because the computer burned off all the ants, but last time the problem went away after like maybe two weeks. I may open the top case and see if it's really dirty, blow it out with a fan. I do smoke by my computer sometimes, so I wonder if that might be the problem.

    and to add - my computer currently says it's at 78° C, and that fan one is spinning at 6200RPM. I have safari open with maybe 5 tabs, then ichat, itunes, mail, and ms word. iTunes is not playing anything. I just slept it for a while, got the temperature down to 50° - it took less than a minute for it to climb to 75°. That's with just safari, word, fan control, and me not even touching the computer.
  11. doteyes9 macrumors member

    Dec 2, 2007
    Well, seeing as how the SMC controls the fans, why not try resetting it? Shut down the MacBook, disconnect all the power sources (the charger and the battery), hold down the power button for 5 seconds, Reconnect the power and cut it on.
  12. maxterpiece macrumors 6502a


    Mar 5, 2003
    I've tried that to no avail, but it seems thta the problem isn't really a fan problem, it's a heat problem.
  13. MisterEd macrumors 6502

    Jan 2, 2006
    My macbook seems to be hotter after the 10.5.2 update. It now takes a lot less for the fans to kick in and really start revving up. Before, they only really did it when encoding video or using flash in safari, etc.

    Anyone else noticed this?

  14. diehldun macrumors 6502a

    Nov 15, 2003
    My mom is having a bad fan problem on her MB when using iChat AV (video). Apparently, it only turns on once we start using the video function, and her MB gets REALLY hot. At the same time, I'm having no problems with my MBP.

    We are both running 10.5.2, and I think she's been having this issue for the last few weeks. She only runs Safari and iChat at the most.
  15. balk macrumors member

    Mar 5, 2008
    This is not normal? I am having the same problem with Skype video conf full screen. Thought is was normal. I don't know the difference between 10.5.2 and older since my MB is 1 month old (late 2007 model). I havent tried iChat by the way, no buddies there.
  16. Jpoon macrumors 6502

    Feb 26, 2008
    Los Angeles
    That's feasibly normal. Skype full screen video chatting or iChat with a full screen video chat would crank up your fan. Are you really going to sit there for a full two hours video chatting with a laptop on your lap? It's gonna get a bit warm!
  17. Nuks macrumors 6502a

    Feb 25, 2006
    The OP should try this. I recently upgraded to 10.5 and my fans were on max all the time, and temps were up around 70 C. I reset the power management as described above, and everything has been fine since. It's worth a shot, at least.
  18. cdjohns macrumors newbie

    Mar 13, 2008
    fan and cpu use?


    I just bought a macbook about a month ago. Last week the fan began to click on frequently and sometimes loudly. For some reason it kicks in especially when I am using Word (2004). I've done all the updates, used disc utility, even done PRAM. Looking at my ISTAT figures, I see temp. at 80 C for CPU A, and fan speed as 6204. What's troubling most is when I look at the Acitivity Monitor and see that word is taking up sometimes 99% of CPU!

    Any ideas? The beast was working fine until last week -- so I dont think it's a compatability problem.

  19. tampy macrumors newbie

    Mar 29, 2008

    Confirmed, this also worked for me! MacBook 2GHz Core 2 Duo, 10.5.2

    I had the constant max fan issue after update. Was driving me insane. Now fixed...

    Reset SMC
  20. rhyx macrumors 6502

    Jan 15, 2008
    I use smcFanControl to keep my fans at 3600 minimum. They rarely seem to ramp up above this except when I'm encoding videos.
  21. billsuspect macrumors newbie

    Dec 2, 2004
    I launched Activity Monitor and i had a runaway print process that was consuming all my CPU, even after multiple reboots. I killed the process and the fan became quiet.
  22. gurkenprinz macrumors newbie

    Feb 26, 2008

    this is my first post here. I had the same problem with the fans running at full RPM even with only finder open. I tried everything that was suggested here on this board, but nothing worked. So I had to send it in and they changed motherboard, fans, cleaned up the whole thing and sent it back to me.

    I turn it on, go to the kitchen to get a drink, come back and the fans have started running again. I then did -after consulting with the "experts" who had changed the hardware but obviously did not test their "repairs" what I had thought I would never have to do again after switching - I reinstalled (archive+install) Leopard!

    That worked, and I have not had any problems with the fans since!

    Greets from Austria,

  23. machole macrumors newbie

    Dec 7, 2007
    I've been having fan issues with my 1st gen black macbook. It's not doing it all the time, but 80% of the day (and 100% of night) it's usually running around 6000rpm even with only the finder open and the temp at 58C or lower. It's driving me nuts because I have no idea what started this and have tried all the tricks that people have submitted to control it with no luck.

    - Reset SMC control, PRAM, Permissions etc
    - Emptied Printer Queues
    - Install SMC Fan Control (doesn't set max, only min)
    - Reinstall Leopard
    - Switched back to original 80GB HDD (using 320GB now)
    - Check activity monitor for any random apps hogging resources

    The problem is that this doesn't seem like the thermal paste issue because the temperature is fine and occassionally the fan does lower but it's just so random. Like right now it's suddenly dropped to a "quiet" 3500rpm and I'm running 6 apps and watching video podcasts. But in 20 minutes I'll reboot and have no apps running and it will go crazy again.

    What I really need is an app that will set MAX fan speed rather than minimum this clearly has nothing to do with heat or system resources. It's just possessed. (BTW, fan just jumped to 6200rpm as I type this).
  24. quadrakid macrumors member

    Jul 26, 2005

    This is exactly what happened to my white macbook 2.16GHZ. Just forced quit the runaway print task.

    Ahhhh silence....!
  25. SinisterPower macrumors member


    Apr 16, 2011
    Same Thing Really

    Hey guys my Macbook pro is almost brand new and it's not all the loud but my smc fan control menu bar is saying it's 183 degrees farenheit and around 4500 rpms. Should I Be concerned?:apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple::apple:

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