Question Yikes, what is this sound?

Jun 26, 2019
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for awhile now and only because I've been lazy about it, I have not cared to handle whatever this loud startup rattling sound is that comes from my tower. It's god awful sounding. It will literally rattle and make what I can only describe as some sort of grinding noise, for 1-3 minutes and then fade out. Today it went a little longer. It only happens right at startup. I have no idea what it is.
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
I do. Since there are no moving parts inside your case EXCEPT for fans, that is the only thing that can make grinding noises. One of your fan bearings has failed or is failing. You need to identify WHERE exactly in the case it is coming from so that you can determine which fan it is and then verify that by rolling up a piece of paper or thin cardboard/posterboard in to a funnel (Or using an actual long funnel) with the small end towards your ear (IF a funnel is even necessary to determine which fan is making the noise) and the large end pointed toward each fan one at a time immediately following powering on the unit.

Once you've identified the culprit, replacing that fan would be the next step. If it is a fan on your graphics card or in your power supply, then replacing the graphics card cooler as a complete assembly or the entire power supply would be the preferred solutions.

In SOME cases, if the fan bearing is merely dry, and not already destroyed beyond salvation, you might, MIGHT, be able to do this, but replacement is usually the more sound option.

 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Oh, I'd say that is your pump. Time for a new AIO cooler would be my guess. Unless you can literally see one of the case or radiator fans hitting something, then there isn't much doubt in my mind that you have a faulty water cooler pump.
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Herald
Easy to check, but honestly sounds like a fan hitting a wire because the rpm quite audibly lowers during the clip. Pumps don't slow down unless there's software that slows them down.

Start the pc, let it run for a second, then unplug each fan from the motherboard/splitter etc. Give it a second to shut down. If the noise is still there with the fan unplugged, it's not that fan. Do that for all fans, even going as far as pulling power from the gpu (shutdown/restart required for that).

Since psu is bottom mounted, can also tilt the case, as loud as that is through that glass, if it's psu fan, it'll be obvious.

If no fans go silent when unplugged, only thing left is the pump. Because that's not a hdd vibrating.
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
The only reason I don't think it's a fan is because he says that it goes away by itself after a couple of minutes. I can't see the noise going away by itself, and then coming back the next time the unit is started up, if it is due to hitting a wire. But anything is possible and I WAS looking to see if there was any evidence of one of the fan blades looking funky in that video. I just couldn't see anything. Maybe another video that shows each of the fans operation might help, but I still don't think a wire would stop making noise after three minutes. To me, that means either the pump or the fan bearing has warmed up and the noise goes away, then comes back again when the bearing or pump is cold again.
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Ok, so you are probably going to have to check it again after it has cooled down for an hour or two. If it is a bearing or the pump, the fact that the system is warmed up is probably not going to allow it to make the noise. Maybe it was simply an air bubble in the cooler and you moved it around enough to get it to move out to the radiator. IDK. Or if you moved things around, maybe it WAS a wire. Hard to say when we are not there to know exactly what you did that caused it to change other than running it.
 
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