Ibm t21 thinkpad boot problem

My Thinkpad T21 laptop will not start--just a click when the "on" switch is pressed. Occasionally I get the IBM splash screen for about 5 seconds, then it goes black, and does the click thing again. This began right after I blew off the keyboard and cooling vent with compressed air--about 20 psi. The click is a bit louder at the fan, so I took it out and verified that it is moving freely. Could the problem be a damaged fan? Or did the blowoff damage something? I'd really appreciate some guidance on this one.

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  1. when you say blew off, did keyboard come off its ribbon? have you checked that the motherboard is intact?

    If it's a fan then you'd simply experience shutdown due to heat buildup, it shouldn't cause your system to spontaneously shut down. When you were using your compressed air was the laptop on or off?

    Make sure that when you turn it on the fan spins, if it doesn't, you motherboard might be shutting down due to the fact that fan isn't spinning.

    can you access BIOS?

    can you disassemble the thing and check exactly where the clicking sound is coming from?
  2. Many thanks for your comments. I tried some things after your reply, ahd there have been some further developments.

    First, some specific answers to your suggestions. The keyboard did not come off its ribbon, and I don't know how to determine whether the motherboard is intact. I disassembled down to removing the fan, but don't know what to look for on the motherboard. And with the keyboard off, I don't know how to switch it on to locate the 'click.'

    But there has been some kind of change. After receiving your reply, I turned it on, and surprisingly it stayed on, though moving very slowly, and I got into the BIOS where nothing seemed amiss. The fan was working fine, so apparently that isn't the problem, and the motherboard isn't completely dead. It did look for the hard drive which I had removed to salvage the data. It then rebooted to a Partition Magic floppy, but here was nothing to do without a hard drive. Then it rebooted to the IBM splash, but after a long wait it went black and back to the click routine.

    Since then I reinstalled the hard drive, but now get only clicks with or without it. Is there anything in this that rings a bell for you?

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