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CPU fan failed - was my CPU damaged?

Last response: in CPUs
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November 14, 2011 2:02:36 AM

I was running IntelBurnTest on my PC, and during the run my stock Intel CPU cooler failed. I didn't notice it had failed until I came into the room and smelled that plasticy smell that occurs when electronics get hot. I believe RealTemp reported that the CPU was running at around 80 C or so, but I shut down the PC right away and so I can't be sure.

I have since replaced the stock CPU cooler with a Coolermaster Hyper 212 Plus. Do you think I damaged my computer? I was planning on running IBT for 20 passes, OCCT for 1 hour, and Prime95 Blend for 24 hours. If that passes, would you say my PC is safe to use?

My system:
Core i5 760 (not overclocked)
Asus P7P55D-E
2x2 GB Ripjaws RAM
Corsair HX650
a c 78 à CPUs
November 14, 2011 2:24:06 AM

start by checking temp before making stress test
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a b à CPUs
November 14, 2011 2:26:38 AM

It should be ok.

Modern CPU's have inbuilt thermal protection and so does your motherboard's bios.

run the tests and monitor the temps if all completes you should be good.
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a b à CPUs
November 14, 2011 3:09:06 AM

Somehow, I have a real bad feeling about this, one question though when you opened the rig, did you find what was causing the smell??
The rig should have shut off long before that smell started to come.
My suggestion is just give the machine it's normal dose of work and load that you put it under for the next few days, keeping an eye out for any erratic rise in temperatures and currents. If it survives under your day to day work loads, then you might think of putting it under one stress test at a time...... but not by leaving it to function all alone, you had better be there keeping your eye on temps and currents again this time during the whole test duration. If you got lucky once doesn't mean you may be lucky the second time.
And why would you think of running Prime95 for 24 Hrs??? 3 Hours is more than enough for anything....
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a b à CPUs
November 14, 2011 4:02:41 AM

Only time I smelled a smell like that coming out of my computer was from the PSU failing.

A CPU at 80 degrees isn't going to kill it, the thermal threshold is above that and will automatically shut down the computer if you hit it. Its fine, but as alyoshka said, I'd be concerned about the smell. Perhaps the smell came from the heatsink's fan wires frying, but keep a close eye on everything.
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November 14, 2011 12:21:09 PM

I actually moved everything over into a new case this weekend (Corsair 600T), with a new power supply (Corsair AX850) and I didn't see anything that was visibly burned or scorched on the motherboard. I wonder if the smell could have been the seized CPU fan? I saw that it had completely stopped turning when I replaced it.

Yesterday, I left the computer on for about 12 hours monitoring temperatures. It didn't get above 40 C doing simple tasks in Windows. I am planning on checking all of the components that I can before I return the PC to use. Will report back on what I find, but please let me know if you have any suggestions.
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a b à CPUs
November 14, 2011 12:39:19 PM

Yeah, it could be the burnt CPU fan. But still don't get your eyes off the temps and currents....
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a c 202 à CPUs
November 14, 2011 1:00:50 PM

alyoshka said:
Somehow, I have a real bad feeling about this, one question though when you opened the rig, did you find what was causing the smell??
The rig should have shut off long before that smell started to come.
My suggestion is just give the machine it's normal dose of work and load that you put it under for the next few days, keeping an eye out for any erratic rise in temperatures and currents. If it survives under your day to day work loads, then you might think of putting it under one stress test at a time...... but not by leaving it to function all alone, you had better be there keeping your eye on temps and currents again this time during the whole test duration. If you got lucky once doesn't mean you may be lucky the second time.
And why would you think of running Prime95 for 24 Hrs??? 3 Hours is more than enough for anything....


Agreed, thermal safeguards should have turned the PC of long before damage (or even a smell) is evedent.
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a b à CPUs
November 14, 2011 1:35:17 PM

Probably the smell was from the CPU Fan itself, do not worry so much. Cross the fingers :) 
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a c 188 à CPUs
November 14, 2011 4:13:32 PM

The Intel® Core™ i5-760 has a feature built into it called Thermtrip. This is the final last stop for runaway temperatures. On this processor it should be set at 125c. At this point the processor will automatically shut down. Now while this may save the processor there are a number of other components that may have been damaged by the heat. So put it back together and test it carefully. http://download.intel.com/design/processor/datashts/322... Page 52

Christian Wood
Intel Enthusiast Team
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November 15, 2011 12:08:51 AM

Thanks everyone. I've run the following tests so far:

OCCT CPU test, 1 hour - PASS - Max temp - 54 C
IntelBurnTest maximum, 20 passes - PASS - Max temp 58 C
MemTest86+, 7 hours - PASS
Prime95 Blend, 24 hours - PASS - Max temp 54 C

I didn't get any funky smells during the tests above.

Do you think this computer is reliable and ready for use, or should I not risk using it for important work?
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a c 78 à CPUs
November 15, 2011 12:12:54 AM

i give it a try
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a b à CPUs
November 15, 2011 2:53:30 AM

Yup, after putting it through all that torture and it still didn't burst into a ball of fire, I'd say you're one lucky chap, hang on to that rig for life. In my experience, rigs are like women some dump you when the going gets tough, some you grow out of, but the there are some who'll stay a lifetime with you and still be the most reliable, your rig seems to be the last kind for you.
Yes, the PC is reliable and ready to use, without the risk of loosing any important work.
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November 15, 2011 4:48:19 AM

the fan motor itself will give off a burning smell when it dies i wouldnt worry about it' if you are using it for work i'd still consider having a usb stick for a backup of any documents handy
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