Yet another fan problem thread

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by RT2020, Jun 30, 2010.

  1. RT2020 macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2010
    Early 2009 Macbook Pro 15 - No Applecare

    Recently, my fans are not spooling up as my computer gets hotter. They used to idle at 1600 and increase as the CPU worked harder.

    Now they are stuck at 2000 RPM, no matter what my system temps are.

    -I've tried SMC reset twice.
    -I have never installed any fan control software
    -I actually wiped the drive and did a full clean install of OSX a few days ago (for other reasons)

    Any suggestions?

    ...oh yeah, and my Superdrive also no longer works. But lets just ignore that for now. For such a luxury-class notebook, why is this thing falling apart like a chinese motorcycle? :confused:
  2. celticpride678

    Feb 15, 2009
    Boston, MA
    Sounds like some things are beginning to fail. I'd take it to Apple and see if they can fix it somehow.
  3. MBHockey macrumors 68040


    Oct 4, 2003
    New York
    Are you positive the bottom of the range used to be 1600 rpm? i've never seen it below 1800 rpm on any MacBook, let alone a Pro.

    2000 seems to be the norm for any of the recent MBPs.

    Have you tried opening it up and cleaning out the fans (probably clogged up with dust)?
  4. noodle654 macrumors 68020


    Jun 2, 2005
    Never Ender
    Yeah something isn't right. MBP fans (starting after the first Core Duo Models) idle at 2000RPM all the time. 1800RPM is MacBook idle, and I think the Air is around 1600-1800.
  5. Beefy macrumors member

    Jun 27, 2010
    Northern Colorado
    That would be my first suggestion...

    It amazes me how many people don't do the simple things to maintain their expensive equipment.
  6. noodle654 macrumors 68020


    Jun 2, 2005
    Never Ender
    Yes I totally agree. I have seen some pretty nasty fans, I cracked open a friends MacBook to reapply the thermal paste and I was shocked that the fan could even spin, the amount of hair/dust in it was disgusting.
  7. Pax macrumors 6502a

    Dec 12, 2003
    on a unibody MBP you really need to hammer the CPU for a long time to get the fans to spool up. On my 13" it takes several minutes of full load activity to get the fans to increase

    eg on my 13"....
    Open terminal
    start 2 instances of yes > /dev/null [Google if you need detailed instructions]
    in Activity Monitor both cores should be redlined
    watch CPU temperatures
    after 1-2 mins CPU rises to about 100 C, fans still at 2000 rpm
    fans slowly start to rise, CPU rises to perhaps 102 C
    after 4-5 mins fans are at about 3500 rpm with CPU at about 95 C

    it takes a long time, and 2x completely redlined CPU cores, to get the fan spooling up.

    Are you sure the fans don't change speed? Try a test like the one above. What temp does the CPU stabilise at after 5-10 mins? If it's 90-95 C you have nothing to worry about. If it's much warmer you may have a problem.

    As other posters have said, your previous fan speed of 1600 rpm looks anomalous - not the current 2000 rpm.

    I expect everything is OK, a test like this would prove it.
  8. aeboi macrumors 65816


    Sep 20, 2009
    Bay Area
    my mbp's fan stays at 2000 rpm even under heavy load

    it does in fact take a while before the fan increases in rpm
  9. RT2020 thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2010
    The temperatures you mentioned are nothing like I used to have for the last year and a half of owning my computer. My Macbook Pro never used exceed 78C, even when using VMware, CS3, rendering programs, and AutoCAD. The fans would run anywhere from 3-5K during heavy usage, and would respond quickly to processor load (basically like a normal computer).

    102C as you mentioned is within a few degrees of the maximum that the Core2Duo can take, after that point, there is essentially an emergency shut down. I have never been near there. Heat = hardware death. Im sure if you keep running at those temps, day after day, you would have hardware failure.

    I use my computer pretty hard... lots of CPU, HD, and RAM intensive work. Since I don't have AppleCare, I can't afford a new logic board. I downloaded smcFanControl today and I have increased the fan speed to 3K minimum I while work. Keeps the temps nice and cool. I would rather be replacing $30 fans in a year, then have my logic board fail. Seems like a good temporary fix.

    Still...I would like to know why my fan behaviour changed suddenly

Share This Page