Computer trouble: [Overheating]


I've been having some trouble with my family's computer. It will shut down unexpectedly, right in the middle of something; click, blank screen, powers down. When you turn it back on it will beep(I'm guessing the CPU trying to tell me something), and then a screen will show saying: "CPU was shutdown due to a thermal event (overheating)" Then you can choose whether to start up normally or enter setup. Sometimes though, it will not turn on at all, I have to unplug the power plug than put it back in, then It will start up like normal.

This problem started a while ago, first time it happened I thought there was a blackout but the lights in the room where still on, so I rebooted then went on using the computer. I thought it was a one time event but it kept happening more and more frequent, than it got unbearable. I read some forums online and thought it might be a problem with the CPU Heat sink, so I decided to re-apply my CPU thermal paste, but it kept happening. I tried to install a Corsair A70 CPU cooler, but it wouldn't fit, but in trying to install a new Heat-sink I reapplied the Thermal paste again. It happened less frequently but it is still happening.

What should I do? Try and get a new Heat-sink that fits? Just leave it up to the experts and have it serviced? What exactly is going on? Please help.

Thank You,


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Clarification Request
Cooling tips

On top of other suggestions, really verify you followed proper procedure for re-application of cpu paste. You don't need too muc as thet will hinder proper operation its use. Next, the HSF arrangement must be proper as well, excluding any OC'ing attempts. If you OC, then you need to get arated fan(HSF) that better handles the operation. Also, verify *ALL* fans are working. Many times, because its unknown the PSU fan has quit ot siezed. Those having dual operation may work longer until it finally quits all together. Understand, to check all fans. Clean out the frt. panel area of any dust bunnies as well, overlooked often enough. Next, offhand, it seems your temps aren't alarming, but it makes sense to check status during various stages of operation. Als, you may overcomed the cooling ascpets of the PC and more is needed, so look into other cooling methiods. Not to exclude what maybe already pressnt but any othert fan mounting locations, some acses provides. best opweration of PC is good "airflow", thus it comes IN from front and exits via the rear. So fan(s) in frt, suck in and rear, suck out. If you have different operation, check to see what works best.

tada -----Willy Happy

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Did you try leaving the case cover off?

Hint: Old tech trick.

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Suggest downloading, installing and running PCWizard

Once it's running .... minimize it and see the system temps in the upper right hand corner of the screen.

Armed with temp info re your CPU and your should be able to tell what component needs to be addressed.

Let us know what you find.


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Speed-fan temps

I have Speed-fan, here's the temps:

GPU - 63C
HDO - 39C
HD1 - 36C
Core - 64C
Internal temp - 40C
Remote temp - 37C
CPU - 49C

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Are these TEMPs during normal use or during

heavy while gaming ? What's the ambient temp where the PC is located ?

What happens to the TEMPs when the side is removed from the PC ?

Are all the fans, grills and heatsinks free of dust ?


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Temps a little better...

I removed the side, plus I re-applied the Graphics cards thermal compound, I don't know if it's making a difference.
The Temps look the same.

The inside of the PC is pretty clean.

The temps I posted earlier where during normal use, I do game most the time though, I don't know how hot it gets during gaming.

Here's current temps with just Firefox running:

GPU - 62C
Core - 62C
CPU - 49C

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Those temps seem high with just Foxfire running.

Foxfire plus Outlook is pretty is all I'm running now and the core temps temps and GPU are showing 20c lower using PCWizard 2010. Each core on my i860 is below 30c and my CPU is 41c. Room temp is 75f.

What's the room temp ??


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Room temp...

Room temp, at the moment, is 76 F
During the day it gets hotter though.

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How much temp drop with the side off and a fan blowing

into the case ?


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The side of the computer was off when I posted the last temps. And I thought you meant by room temp, the temperature of room that the computers in. Is that what it means?

Anyway, the problem usually happens after a long time of use, usually gaming. Since the GPU is the hottest thing, I'm guessing after a while the Graphics card gets too hot and the computer shuts down to save itself. If I touch the graphics cards heat-sink I can feel it gets very hot.

I guess the more importaint question is: Will this harm the computer or will it always shut down before it overheats?

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Eventually something will happen.

A fast power off like that can corrupt hard drive contents which for some is a disaster. They don't have backups or reinstall media.

We have to ask if that's harm or not.

However I wonder why Speedfan is installed. If you let it reduce the speed of the fans, that's not helping.

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You've noticed your GPU is HOT and the mention of long play during gaming. This is not good. In effect, you need better cooling. The GPU can only last so long and overall, gamers tend to beat their systems, because at one time it worked OK but later doesn't. This is the overall effect of
'heat stress"., in other words, heat damaged related. If you visit some gaming websites, many offer what they did to improve cooling and some get extreme, but often enough that's needed. Water cooling and or large arrays of air cooled PCs are about what many do. Besides, the side cover off, try placing a household fan and see how that improves play time. You may also look into cooling the room. Afterall, the ambient room temp is what the PC is sucking-IN and is closely related to an air-cooled setup.

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Thank's for the Help

Since I re-applied the thermal paste on the Graphics card, I have the
case open, and at the moment I have a household fan pointing at it. I
don't think the problem has persisted since I did those things, but I
can't be sure. Right now the room is really hot and I've just been
playing a game and it hasn't shut down. Then again, I can't be sure but
it's sure helping.

One other thing, I would like to be sure it is the Graphics card because
it is under warranty and if there's any problems I should be able to
return it or get a new one.

Thanks for all your help! But please, if anyone has any more suggestions please post!!!

Thanks again,


P.S. @ Bob, I installed SpeedFan, and I usually don't have it running
all the time, but if I do I put all fans on 100%, I don't think it
changed anything though

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Next stop? Peltier cooling.

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