Super Spread Sheet S³

Or little computing tricks and hacks

Obvious solution

In this post, I explained the heating problem my husband’s laptop was having. It reached a point in which it was not possible to use it anymore. Any sort of browsing would exceed the threshold temperature and the computer would shut itself off. My own laptop developed an even worse behaviour. The fan all of a sudden started making a very loud buzz-like noise. Great for the middle of the night. I even bough a portable fan to blow air from underneath to keep the computer cool. That worked for the temperature, which was normally around 88°, but not for the noise. I was astonished to see that normal temperatures where around 55° to 65°.

Agreed! We have to replace the laptops…

Until I thought of opening the computer and checking to see if I could see something blocking the fan. So I found out how to take off the bottom cover, very easily, like a mobile phone. No screws. (I found a youtube video of it, but sorry, lost the link.) Then I noticed that the fan was indeed very dirty and tried to clean it but the task was impossible without taking the fan out.

Searching into how, I found this HP page, about preventing overheating.

Bu looking at the fan, I knew that I needed to take the fan out. I unscrewed the fan, eased it out, and BINGO: a layer of about 3mm of solid dust. With the help of my daughter, we removed as much dust as possible. The page suggested using a can of compressed air to blow the air away but I did not have any and did not think (nor read the whole page) to use a hair dryer. Just cleaning out the vents with a screwdriver did the trick. We assemble the computer, turned it on and the noise was gone and the temperature stabilized at 59-60°.

We did the same with JP’s computer and he had 4mm or more of hard dust. His laptop temperature is now stable at 63-65°. He can now do the previously unthinkable task of git-pulling on the c++ repository and successfully update his local branch.

All just a matter of mechanics!


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