Have I set up my CPU fan wrong?

In terms of fan orientation, should the fan be facing up or down? I have a rear and top exhaust fan, and a bottom mounted PSU. I am thinking I may have installed the fan upside down? should I remove it and rotate it?

Also, i'll be mounting a left side panel fan (and changing my graphics card) should my side fans be intake or exhaust fans? It seems that if I was to rotate my CPU fan and have an intake fan on the left side panel this would improve my cooling.

Image below.


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  1. This is an example of an ideal case air flow pattern. Intake low - exhaust high.

    They typical CPU cooler setup is is the fan blowing through the heatsink and out the back of the case assisted by the rear case exhaust fan.
    Left panel fan would be an intake setup blowing down on the video card(s).
  2. so my CPU fan is the wrong way round? thanks, that photo shows more arrows than other diagrams i've looked at and makes it a little easier as my case is similar in design
  3. That case in the diagram is an early model CM RC-690.

    I think you're HSF setup is blowing warm air into the interior of the case. Setting the air flow to move up through the heatsink and out the top, or through the heatsink and out the back would might be worth changing things around. I don't think it would hurt running it the way you have it - it's just not ideal for cooling. Be sure to monitor your temps. HWMonitor works good. http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/hwmonitor.html
  4. i'm using Asus ProbeII for monitoring CPU temp, last night it was at 36-38 degrees idol and about 44-46 under small tasks, anti virus scan, installing applications etc. however after I restarted it at one point temp was at at 44-47 idol and didn't drop back down, and shot up to 125 for a split second then went back down? :S

    I'll try turning it around, just ordered some isopropyl to replace the thermal paste :)
  5. It's good to have a record of temps under various conditions.
    That way you know for sure if the changes you've making are doing the system any good.
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