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How often do you clean up your PC?

For a couple of weeks now, I’ve experienced my computer abruptly shutting off. At first, I thought it was just some power surge or something so I suspected my UPS to be defective or just can’t handle the total load of the PC and other devices I’ve plugged into it.

It was only lately that the shutdowns were too often that I thought there could be other possible reasons. My second suspect was the exhaust fans that might not be working. Next was the CPU fan. I fired up PC Wizard to see if it can detect any problems with the fans and the CPU temperature.

That’s when I found out the CPU core temps were thru the roof — all 4 cores were averaging 100 degrees. I double-checked with the BIOS monitor and it was also showing a similar reading. I practically touched the heatsink to see if it was indeed really hot.

pc-wizard-monitor

The fans were running (both system and CPU) but I thought they were slow so I cranked them up to maximum speeds. Still nothing. A cooldown didn’t work — the CPU temp would shoot back to 85 degrees within minutes of boot-up.

The last remaining item on my list was that the CPU could be busted or defective. I was about to remove and check it when I noticed all the dirt that was clogging up the CPU fan. The fan was working but the passage of the airway between heatsink and the fan was completely clogged.

I immediately cleaned it off and that did it. Within minutes, the CPU temp was already dropping to around 50 degrees.

So next time you experience having your PC erratically shutting down, check the fans they might just need some cleaning up. You can also use PC Wizard here to monitor your CPU.

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Avatar for Abe Olandres

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech with over 20 years of experience in the technology industry. He is one of the pioneers of blogging in the country and considered by many as the Father of Tech Blogging in the Philippines. He is also a technology consultant, a tech columnist with several national publications, resource speaker and mentor/advisor to several start-up companies.

14 Responses

  1. Avatar for Morbie Load Morbie Load says:

    Ive been lurking over here for the longest time and eventually have the urge to comment. First of all, I wish to thank you for the wonderful posts. Second, thank you for writing Top quality posts and not just rehashed posts discovered elsewhere. Absolutely a cool web page I’d advise….well, I’ve been bookmarking this web page, that need to be enough proof of me recommending this lol.

  2. Avatar for Jonie@Send Load Philippines Jonie@Send Load Philippines says:

    This is funny, I was just thinking about this yesterday. For some weird motive I stumbled to this article lol. I’ll be coming back here. This really is a good discovery….rare for me to stumble on new websites :)

  3. Avatar for ronz ronz says:

    it is part of having a pc or a lappie to do preventive maintenance once in a while….i wud suggest at least quarterly especially for net shop owners…to diy the cpu…chek videos in youtube about cpu cleaning….

  4. Avatar for Marian Calago Marian Calago says:

    I don’t make clean-ups because i don’t own a pc…
    very good site..
    keep it up… I watched you last night at QTV.. enter the world of blogging..

  5. Avatar for zch24 zch24 says:

    I misread the title. I thought the author was talking about getting rid of unnecessary drivers/apps. I wonder if it was the dirt that killed the video card on my old iMac Lime.

  6. Avatar for vaughn vaughn says:

    i clean it bout once a year..anyway i have dust filters on all of the intake fans so it doesnt really get that dusty inside

  7. Avatar for dann de la cuesta dann de la cuesta says:

    very intresting and informative site!

  8. Avatar for BrianB BrianB says:

    I had this problem many years ago, the PC at home was shutting down a lot. I took it to the repair shop and they had me buy a new motherboard. Linis lang pala kailangan.

  9. Avatar for calvin calvin says:

    that happened to me but it was an old PC and found out that the thermal paste to the CPU dried up.

  10. Avatar for Juneau21 Juneau21 says:

    this also happened to me last week, 85deg on idle!, i thought its because of the hot weather, but then i tried to clean the cpu HSF, but then i forgot that i dont have a thermal paste/grease for the cpu. so i considered buying a aftermarket cooling fan like the zalman cnps9700 nt. and its worth it. when the pc is on full load it barely got higher than 45deg cel.i usually clean my pc after a month or two. and i use everest ultimate for monitoring temp and clock speed of cpu/gpu.

  11. Avatar for Erin Erin says:

    My Fujitsu laptop is encountering a similar issue wherein the temperature jumps and causes the laptop to shutdown after a few minutes of intensive use (normally 5-10 minutes). I already cleaned up the fans and removed a few dustballs but the problem still persists. I already tried using netbook coolers but it doesn’t remedy the problem.

    To solve the issue, I bought a netbook. :P

    ciao!

  12. Avatar for Jerome Jerome says:

    I usually clean my pc once or twice a month. Because of the temp. Of the cpu

  13. Avatar for Andre Marcelo-Tanner Andre Marcelo-Tanner says:

    CoreTemp is also a really small utility for monitoring your processor temps, it displays it in the task bar. For GPU temp you might need Riva Tuner to monitor that.

  14. Avatar for Snow Snow says:

    I usually do clean-ups when it crash! :) Yup, this is true. :)

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