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CPU Idling at 70 C

Hi! Obviously I'm very new here so please be patient with me while I work out my newbie-ness.

When I turn on my computer and immediately enter the bios, it says my CPU temp is around 60 C. After booting windows and idling for a while this increases to 70 C. I'm not overclocking and the real trouble is my CPU fan. The noise coming from it is driving me crazy!!! There's no way my temperatures can really be this hot.

I've tried using RealTemp but it just gives me the same numbers as the software that came with my motherboard (ASUS Rampage III Gene).

I apologize because I'm sure several similar topics are already here on the boards but I can't find one that seems to solve the problem. If I can't 'fix' my temperatures, is there some way to limit my CPU fan speed?

Can't even begin to tell you how much I'd appreciate some advice.
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  1. You almost certainly have something wrong with your cooler. Don't try to limit the fan speed; it's just keeping your cpu from shutting down! It wouldn't be going crazy if it wasn''t important to keep the cpu cool.
    So, the question is: what's the bigger issue?
    If you're new to cpu building, there are a few easy ones that would cause high temperature readings.
    1-You didn't apply thermal compound/applied absurdly little. This is possible, but unlikely if you read your processor's instructions. There should have been enough to cover the top of the processor, but not more.
    2-You didn't get enough pressure between the cooler and the processor. There should be a LOT of pressure.
    3-The temperatures are actually NOT that hot, and there's some problem with the sensors. This should be an easy one to rule out. Put your hand right next to the cpu heatsink, where the air is blown out after going through the cooling vanes. Is it hot or very warm? There you go. Otherwise, there's something wrong with the temperature monitoring in your motherboard or processor.
    4-You're...not using a heatsink at all? Just a fan or something? I don't know, you said you were new.
    5-You have terrible case airflow, so all the hot cpu air is circulating around and getting hotter and hotter.

    Regardless of what's causing it, one thing you cannot afford to do is limit the fan speed without fixing the underlying problem. There are multiple, easy ways to limit the speed, but if you do it when your processor is just on the edge of overheating then that's what it'll do -overheat- and you'll just get a bunch of bluescreens.
  2. Models of your case, processor, gpu and everything? Ambient temperature?
  3. kajabla said:
    Models of your case, processor, gpu and everything? Ambient temperature?


    Thanks so much for your response kajabla!

    Case: Thermaltake Lanbox Lite
    Processor: Core i7 930
    Motherboard: ASUS Rampage III Gene
    GPU: Sapphire HD5850
    RAM: 24 GB Crucial Ballistix [For engineering and computer assisted design]
    CPU Fan: Thermaltake [Maybe the problem is here somehow?]
    Ambient Temperature is 23 C / 73 F

    Thermal paste was pre-applied on the CPU fan. Computer was built in September of 2010, and the computer has always idled high (40 to 50 C) but temperatures didn't get out of control until the recent RAM upgrade.

    At the moment I'm idling at 75 C with the lid open. I reached in and touched one of the fins of the heatsink/fan and I doesn't seem hot at all to me. Additionally my motherboard temp is at 46 C right now so I'm inclined to believe the temperature sensors are at fault. But of course I'm not expert!

    Thanks again for your input on this!
  4. Are all fans operating and clean of dust? Check and make sure the CPU cooler is still firmly attached (and that the pushpins are still completely in and engaged). Perhaps the cooler was bumped when the new ram was being installed.
  5. Aiden-Dakari said:
    Thanks so much for your response kajabla!

    Case: Thermaltake Lanbox Lite
    Processor: Core i7 930
    Motherboard: ASUS Rampage III Gene
    GPU: Sapphire HD5850
    RAM: 24 GB Crucial Ballistix [For engineering and computer assisted design]
    CPU Fan: Thermaltake [Maybe the problem is here somehow?]
    Ambient Temperature is 23 C / 73 F

    Thermal paste was pre-applied on the CPU fan. Computer was built in September of 2010, and the computer has always idled high (40 to 50 C) but temperatures didn't get out of control until the recent RAM upgrade.

    At the moment I'm idling at 75 C with the lid open. I reached in and touched one of the fins of the heatsink/fan and I doesn't seem hot at all to me. Additionally my motherboard temp is at 46 C right now so I'm inclined to believe the temperature sensors are at fault. But of course I'm not expert!

    Thanks again for your input on this!



    Pre applied on the CPU fan?? Thermal paste should be applied to the heatsink, the heatsink 'attached' to the CPU, and then fan(s) put on the heatsink. There's obviously some problem with the cooler. I would suggest taking it off and reseating it with fresh thermal paste or buying a new one, especially if the fan is not operating correctly
  6. I think the OP was referring to the heatsink/fan combination as the CPU fan.
  7. I would check to see if the heatsink is secured properly. It would be a good idea to clean the old thermal paste and get some new thermal paste when you do this. Also clean any dust out as others have said, use compressed air.
  8. it does sound like you may have poped a corner on the the hsf when you inserted the new ram.
    you may have either released a clip or when you replaced the hsf (if you took it off) you may have trapped some air.
    either way remove it, clean it properly, and apply new paste... lock it down and temps should go back to normal. if they dont go into bios and make sure you load optimized defaults. something you should have done when you added the new ram anyway. because if you used mixed ram it may be causing an issue.
  9. Best answer
    Procedure:

    1- Remove cpu fan and clear it and cpu from thermal paste
    2- Clean out ur case and make it dustfree
    3- Clean out the cpu fan, can use brush to be sure nothing is in the fan itselfe.
    4- Apply new thermal paste (i recommend 4 small dots on the corners of the cpu and a slightly larger dot in the middle), use a premium thermal paste like arctic silver e.g.
    5- re-apply cpu fan and check if you didnt apply too much paste (paste comming out from the side of the cpu / fan)
    6- re-heck temps

    In most cases these simple steps resolve such problems and you also contributed in a nice and dustfree case :)
  10. I think your using the Intel stock hsf?
    Then i advice you to reseat the hsf.I went through this problem with 2 intel cpus.I really in my mind would doubt it is an AMD but it could be possible.I advice you to reseat the fan again.
  11. Thanks to everyone for your suggestions!

    I was originally using a thermaltake heat sink fan which was always very loud. (55 dB at 100% RPM !!!). Based on everyone's suggestions I cleaned off all the thermal paste and switched to using the stock intel hsf (heat sink fan?).

    I've had my computer running for only a few minutes but the temperature seems to be stable at 52 C. And the motherboard temperature is 40 C.

    I know thermal paste takes about a week to 'burn in' so I'm sure that number will drop to about 42 C later.

    In the meantime I thought I might add some observations to help others in the future as well as figure out exactly what was causing the problem in the first place.

    1. When I removed the thermaltake fan, I noticed some air bubbles in the thermal paste.

    2. Several of the pins/anchors that held the heat sink fan in place were loose. So HEXit was probably right. I probably bumped the hsf when I put in the new ram.

    3. I still believe my temperature sensors are inaccurate (as evidenced by the motherboard temperature). But this solution certainly helped.

    If anyone has further suggestions I'd love to hear them. Also if anyone knows some things I should be on the lookout for with a stock intel hsf and new paste, I appreciate advice.

    Till then I'll just let it idle for a while and maybe put it under heavy load later.

    Thanks again to everyone for their advice! I'll pick a best answer in about a week after the paste has settled in.
  12. Oh and I also should have mentioned,

    4. I got a blue screen of death immediately after logging into windows. Very strange and it had me sweating during the reboot but it seems fine now.
  13. Best answer selected by Aiden-Dakari.
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