Question Help with CPU Fan issue

Aug 15, 2021
I'm having a problem and I don't know what do to.

The CPU fan suddenly started going to full speed and back to normal (akin to what happens during the boot cycle) for no reason during normal use. Some days it would happen more frequently than others and some days it wouldn't happen at all. I started the computer in the BIOS to test and the CPU fan ran fine so I assume it might be something after it boots into Windows.

The temps were fine (it's also one of the coldest winters we've had here) and the CPU usage didn't seem to change or spike during the CPU fan changes in speed. If it did I didn't catch it but the temperature didn't rise according to MSI Afterburner.

I'm saying all of this in the past because the CPU fan stopped working and I don't have a spare to test.

I'd like to know if anyone know or has experience with a similar issue because I don't want to risk buying a new fan and having it also die or keep going full speed for no apparent reason.

Edit: I've forgotten to add that the computer is working perfectly fine. It's just that I can't turn it on anymore without risking the CPU.

I can't open the computer right now because I lack the time and space to do so.

Updated Specs:

OS: Windows 8.1 Pro

The CPU Fan is stock intel that came with the CPU.
CPU: I5 4440 Haswell.

Motherboard: Asrock H81M-VG4 R2.0

Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (2x8) DDR3 1600Mhz, CMZ16GX3M2A1600C9

Power Supply: EVGA 600W 80 Plus Bronze - Semi Modular - 110-BQ-0600-K

-Bought new, roughly 3 years of use - Used for heavy gaming during some months of the year (I have bought it in a physical store, so I can't check whether it is K1 or just K now).

Graphics Card: NVIDIA EVGA GEFORCE GTX 1060 6GB SC ACX 2.0 DDR5 06G-P4-6163-KR

HDD: Seagate SATA 3,5´ BarraCuda 2TB 7200RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6Gb/s - ST2000DM006

- 30 GBs of free space (not fragmented)

There is also a DVD unit but the lid is covered for me to check. In any case I can just disconnect it so there is that.
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Update your post to include full system hardware specs and OS information.

All components.

Include PSU: make, model, wattage, age, condition? Heavy gaming or video editing use?

Disk drives: make, model, capacity, how full?

Start by powering down, unplugging, and opening the case.

Clean out dust and debris.

Ensure by sight and feel that all connections, cards, RAM, and jumpers are fully and firmly in place.

Use a bright flashlight to inspect for signs of damage: burned/blackened components, melting, bare conduction showing, etc..
Sounds like the fan bearing could be wearing out causing it to make noise and slow down when doing so. This would sound like it's speeding up, but in reality it is slowing down.

Unfortunately, it does seem you'll have to open the system or at least turn it on with the side removed so you can see the fan to get a better idea of what's going on.
Aug 15, 2021
Thank you.

Yes, I'll open it as soon as I can.

The problem is that the temperature didn't change the times it happened. It was also really similar, if not identical to the noise it does (and time duration) when you turn on the computer. So much so that I knew it was the CPU fan the first time it happened.

I checked the BIOS when at last the fan stopped spinning and the temperature was at 89.0 °C / 192,2 °F and the CPU Fan was at 0 RPM.

I may end up buying an aftermarket Fan to replace it when I open the computer case in case I can't get the fan to start spinning again. It did work once after I left the computer powered off for a while the might it stopped working.

It may indeed be the fan failing due to wear. I was just thinking about it and I've realized that although the system is 3 years old, both the CPU and fan are from the previous build and thus perhaps some 7 to 8 years old. I even went from DDR 3 to DDR4 because the sticks of RAM died and I did this build after another 2 sticks died.

Sorry for this much text, I'm on my phone.
Aug 15, 2021
I was "afraid" this was going to happen. After cleaning and taking a look inside I turned on the PC without the lid and the CPU fan started. I waited some time in the BIOS and then booted into Windows and it refused to act up or change the speed or anything.

It wasn't dirty or anything really, which is surprising. Just had some inconsequential dust on the blades which I've removed.
In fact it is moving just as easily as the graphics card fan or the system fan, so I don't think it is friction or lack of lubrication.

I checked the cables and they seem all normal. The CPU and ATX cables are braided so I can't look inside them. I did however push the CPU and the motherboard ATX cables just in case they could be lose.

Sorry for the time it took for me to report back, I had some other issues and when I took the computer to clean and check I've noticed the case is starting to get corrosion.