Terrible Fan Noises

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by joseph.schmidt, Dec 25, 2008.

  1. joseph.schmidt macrumors newbie

    Dec 25, 2008
    So I heard this awful noise coming from my right speaker when I was installing photoshop, and I assumed it was my fan. I did some google searches and listened to some video clips of people with similar problems and the noise seems to be the same, indicating that I have a problem with my right fan. The noise has been happening since I moved my laptop home from college a few days ago, but it goes noticeably worse tonight.

    However, my left fan doesn't seem to be working at all. I used iStat (widget) and Fan Control to verify that my left fan is spinning at 0 rpm. Annoying fan noises have been going on for a long time, maybe since I got my computer three years ago... But I shrugged them off like an idiot. Anyway, I seem to remember my left fan making lots of noise when I was having this problem a year back or so. Now it seems that the left fan in completely dead, and the right fan is overcompensating and starting to break down now too.

    Two questions:
    Can I be sure the left fan is broken, or does the left fan only kick on sometimes and I just haven't witnessed it tonight?

    Should I try to fix it? I'm not under warranty and the parts are about $60. I'd prefer not to spend a million dollars on labor; my dad and I are pretty smart and can probably fix it ourselves.

    Please add any other advise you can muster!
    Thanks so much!
  2. J the Ninja macrumors 68000

    Jul 14, 2008
    Run the Apple Hardware Test?

    Both fans should be moving at all times. Since you're out of warranty and say you're decently comfortable messing around with computers, I'd say give repairing it a shot. iFixit.com can supply you with both the fan (~$60) and the a detailed step-by-step guide to installing it (free). Look over the guide and see if you feel comfortable trying it.
  3. joseph.schmidt thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 25, 2008
    I tried the hardware test and got this error:


    This sounds like a problem with the fan right? And it would support my claim that my left fan ISNT WORKING.

    Should I not use my computer? This is a little scary...
  4. iMacDragon macrumors 68000


    Oct 18, 2008
    If you're confident about poking about I'd try and fix it, I had to replace right fan in my 2006 MBP earlier in year, and sounds like the left is about to fail, so I've ordered a new set from ebay to fix it when it dies too.

    Just make sure you do get the exact right part for you generation model, as they seem to vary the fan design slightly every every generation.

    I got mine quite cheap too it must be said, found a set of both left and right fans for $25 for original core duo model

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Apple-Fans-for-MB-PRO-15-922-7193-922-7194_W0QQitemZ260335456764 for a first gen core duo
    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Apple-Fans-for-MB-PRO-15-922-8042-8043_W0QQitemZ260336989651 I think is the part for the later 2006 models.

    seemed to be the cheapest around I could find, still waiting to receive, but not expecting them till the new year or so.

    I'd advice in meanwhile installing menu bar istat and seeing what temperatures are like, if your GPU is staying under 65 or so and cpu under 75 or so it's probably safe to use for now, if much higher, I'd probably keep it off till repaired.

    and I can confirm that when my right fan gradually failed it did start getting increasingly noisy, till it just stopped working and reporting 0rpm.

    I did also use my laptop for several months with a dead right fan, this is the fan thats mostly on the GPU, so as long as not stressing the graphics too hard it was ok. The left fan is the CPU fan, so again, long as not stressing CPU too hard, it will probably be ok, but keep a carefull eye on temperature.
  5. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Yeah just buy the fan off ebay and fix it yourself.

    Please do not assume that smart means you can do it. I'm not saying you can't, just saying don't get too proud, because that's when you're most likely to fail (and break something) ;)

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