My PB12" starts sleeping, because running too hot!!!

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by mherz, Aug 5, 2006.

  1. mherz macrumors member

    Aug 11, 2004
    I am really starting to get annoyed and am hoping for some help with you guys!

    Everytime my PB12" (1.33 Ghz, approx 2 years old) is doing something even mildly processor intensive, the fan goes on. And when it is doing something like rendering in a 3d-modelling program, or some complex photoshop filters, it often happens that it goes to sleep, because its running too hot.

    This is like 'mega annoying', because its happening all the time.

    It started some months ago, and is getting worse. I remember that it started when I accidently dropped it to the floor, and it was slightly bent ever since. But when after that drop, it was only the fan which went on more frequently. Now in the last two months or so, it started going to sleep, without any other physical damage having occured.

    Obviously, it sits on a clean and smooth and hard surface, I did restarts, no other program is runnings, etc. etc.

    Any advice????
    would be really great.
  2. GimmeSlack12 macrumors 603


    Apr 29, 2005
    San Francisco
    Don't drop it again.

    Sounds like the PB might need to be looked at by someone. Just cause there is no visible damage, doesn't mean there is no damage.
  3. SuperCompu2 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2006
  4. mherz thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 11, 2004
    its not with applecare anymore.
    After I dropped it, the computer ran fine, ever since. really, no problems at all, fortunately. Just a bit more fan activity. I dropped it maybe last year in october, or something.

    And since April or May, the fan is much more often in use and its going to sleep. And there was no physical damage, (or any other damage) to trigger this higher fan activity. (And it is independent of room temperature, I checked that in air conditioned rooms, etc.)
  5. Maxx Power macrumors 6502a

    Maxx Power

    Apr 29, 2003
    there are a lot of talk about this specific model of PB being prone to overheating, mostly just outside of the warranty period. Recently someone started a blog about his 1.33 12" burning itself while on a Podium (plastic rise thing to cool lappy), it was a few days ago on

    Someone else left their 12" 1.33 on with OpenGL screensaver and when he came back, the unit overheated and killed the motherboard inside.

    Now, i'm typing this on a 12" 1.33 right now, and this one has its Vram damaged by overheating not even in 3D mode, in an air conditioned university office, on a flat laminated desk, so now, the lappy is showing artifacts no matter what condition it is in. The warranty just expired not long ago, and this showed up.

    One thing you can try, which won't help me anymore, is to open your PB, and clean all the airways in and out, then replace the heatsink thermalpad/compound with some Arctic Silver 5 for best heat conduction, remember to spread the compound thin and even for best transfer of heat. I should do that, but my Vram is already toast, and is in need of a board swap, if you haven't fried anything yet, it is a worthwhile bet. It will transfer the heat from the GPU, CPU, Chipset to the heatpipes and sinks better.

    FYI, this lappy also heatstroked in the spring/early summer, was running fine in the winter, and always within apple spec'd environmental temperatures.
  6. mherz thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 11, 2004
    ok. I will try that. Is there any online-guide to opening up the PB12" that I can follow. I am not totally unexperienced with these things, but feel more comfortable when I have some pictures to follow.

    Other question: in what kind of stores do you get 'arctic silver 5'?
  7. bwanac macrumors regular

    Mar 27, 2006
    #7 has guides for replacing parts... and they are pretty good.

    not that you are replacing anything but it will show you how to open her up!
  8. Maxx Power macrumors 6502a

    Maxx Power

    Apr 29, 2003

    is a good source of service manuals. You need the 12" Dvi versiyon, it's a PDF, about 5 megs. It helps if you use coloured permanent markers to mark screw holes and screws the same colour, you might need a few colours to differentiate different screws in the same section (eg, body might have 3 types of screws, so 3 colours for body, and then reuse the colours for other parts), or take pictures of every part you take out to remind you which screws goes in where and what snaps onto what.

    Arctic Silver 5, or commonly AS5, is a silver based heatsink compound, you can obtain this easily online, and locally. Typically any local computer store (not chain stores like FutureShop, or BestBuy) will carry it in stock, or order it in for you. Take care to not rub it all over, because it is oil based and does not clean up as easily as other ceramic compounds. It is silvery, in a small tube or squeeze syringe. About 5 dollars for a small tube and 10 dollars or more for multiple-application tubes.

    For a good idea on how to apply heatsink compound, do NOT consult apple service manuals. Instead, do a quick google search for how to properly apply heatsink compound and it'll return with many links and pictures.

    Be prepared, however, the task of taking apart a 12" G4 is not particularly simple due to the number of steps required, and some parts do not snap away at the connector head easily may require some finesse and tenacity. Never force anything, if anything doesn't come loose, work it slowly, connector wires for the power buttons for example, are very very fragile, and can't handle a tug, you will need to carefully pull the connector with a tool while holding the socket toward the mainboard to prevent damaging the soldered contacts.

    Best of luck, and don't sweat it, I did lots of repairs like this to various computers (laptops), and just remember, if something doesn't come loose, it's probably because something is holding it that requires removal first.
  9. Monk Edsel macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2004
    My twelver (1.33 Ghz) gets pretty hot too. It used to get extremely hot, with the fan running 24/7, even with best energy savings. I thought about it and figured there had some program running that was using a lot of CPU, so I looked in the Activity Viewer. There, some sort of background IP print service was consuming ALL available processing power, keeping my CPU usage up to 100% ALL of the time. I quit the app through the Activity Viewer, it never launched again, and my computer is back to normal.

    I found the app running again:

  10. California macrumors 68040


    Aug 21, 2004
    There is one other issue on 12" PBs, the oem Toshiba hard drives most times have their breather holes covered up by the label, causing the drives to fail quickly. My 12" gets pretty hot, I pop the battery out (to cool it off) and place it on one of those BluIce freezer packs. Radical but works.

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