Laptop Fan: Things You Need To Know


What is a laptop fan?

A laptop fan is a small, internal component. Usually, it is placed at the bottom of the laptop to create airflow in order for proper cooling of the device. Laptop fans can also be found in some models on top of the screen.

Laptop fans are made up of parts which include blades, casing, armature, and motor. The fan spins when electricity passes through its wiring, pushing air outwards. This creates an airflow that pulls heat away from inside components such as microprocessors.

Laptops are made with tiny amounts of space between components, so they won’t overheat when in use or when brought into high temperatures (such as leaving it next to your body). However, when these gaps fill with dust or debris it reduces airflow causing the laptop to overheat.

dusty-fan Why could a laptop fan stop working?

A common reason a laptop fan will stop working is because of a build-up of dust and other debris which blocks the fan from spinning. Laptop fans also have very thin wires that can break if one’s laptop has been dropped or hit, leaving them incapable of moving the blades, resulting in overheating components. In these cases, a laptop fan may begin malfunctioning as well as slowing down or overheating your device altogether.

For laptops with problems with overheating it is recommended you look for another device to use until you have replaced your broken part. Overheated devices can cause short circuits and even fires, so it is important to address any issues quickly to prevent expensive laptop repairs or injury.

What happens if a laptop fan stops working?

If a laptop fan stops working correctly it can cause heat problems with internal parts of your laptop, especially the fan itself. Removing any dust build-up will help prevent overheating issues and reduce how long it takes for your device to begin malfunctioning due to excess heat.

Heat is a major cause of hardware damage, too much heat over time leads to failures like shortened battery life, slow performance, USB failure (connectors), hard drive failure(mechanical) etc… The main reason why you have a Fan because it cools down your components by the excessive heat from them so they can function properly. A good Fan will keep your laptop within the safe operating range of 35-45 degrees Celsius for optimal performance.

When you open your laptop you see some metal looking plates with on top something that looks like a rotating object under it all there is your fan on top. If you want to find out if your fan is working, put your finger on it if its spinning you can feel it. The fan’s job is to take heat away from the inside of the laptop.

You could probably get away temporarily by using a laptop cooling fan from Scorptec or eBay.

Purpose of laptop fans

Laptop fans are designed to keep laptops cool when they start heating up while running intensive programs or tasks that generate a lot of heat. Laptops usually come with one or more built in fans that assist in cooling down both the battery and chipset hence preventing hardware failures brought about by excess heat generated within the components during use.

If you notice that your laptop is running very slowly when under heavy load (e.g., playing graphics-intensive games), using demanding programs (video editing, image manipulation), or is starting to shut itself down unexpectedly, your laptop may be overheating. In addition, if you notice a funny smell or hear a loud whirring noise coming from the fan vent it may be time to have your laptop looked at by an expert.

Symptoms of a failing laptop fan

Laptop fans are designed to operate quietly and should not produce a lot of noise unless they’re running at high speed. If your laptop’s fan is making a noticeable humming sound when the laptop is idle, or you can hear high-pitched screeching from inside the machine then something isn’t right. The fan could be clogged with dirt and dust particles that cause friction within the bearings causing them to wear out faster than normal which would make them noisy, at this point it’s time to replace the fan.

Desktop Fans vs Laptop Ones

Every laptop is equipped with fans, but some are better than others. Fans used in desktops feature larger blades and high-quality bearings for smooth operation. Fans built into laptops on the other hand are often smaller to make room for everything else inside the case. While this means that they typically run more quietly it also means that their lifespan is shorter, and they can be less effective at cooling down your laptop.

Because of the increasing importance of mobility, electrical engineers are forced to build smaller devices. The problem is that small fans don’t have enough space to create strong airflow, so they move slower and run louder than large counterparts. Manufacturers compensate by using more power to push air through, but this eventually generates excess heat which must be removed for a laptop fan to operate efficiently.

Final Note

It is extremely important to clean your computer or laptop on a semi-annual or annual basis to make sure everything runs smoothly!

I am a computer engineer holding a bachelor's degree in Computer Science, complemented by a Master's in Business Administration from University of Strathclyde, Scotland. I currently work as a Senior IT Consultant in Melbourne, Australia. With over 15 years of...