Question about Dell Dimension 4600 PC Desktop

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Pc sht down stating thermal error. suppose processr fan not working. can this be the cause of the eror?

Thermal error, pc shut down and error stated thermal error. Fan not working on processor because I hear no sound from fan.

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  • pgj0 May 25, 2009

    The fan on processor is not working. power supply fan is working fine. The error states that a thermal error has occurred machine is shutting down!

  • pgj0 May 25, 2009

    Thanks, Computer will not be used untiL fan has been purchased! Know a good place to get one?

  • Ben Wabnick
    Ben Wabnick May 11, 2010

    Open up the computer and make sure the fan to the CPU is plugged in, if its not then plug it in. If it is plugged in and not working then make sure that nothing is blocking the way of the fan and make sure there is no dust in the fan.




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Most of the time you'll never hear the CPU fan. If you don't hear the normal fan sounds coming from your computer, it is most likely the power supply cooling fan. Hold you hand at the back of the computer where the power chord plugs in, while the computer is running, and test if you feel air blowing on your hand. If you don't, then replace your power supply. Make sure, when checking for a new PS that you get the correct pin count. Best to order from Dell since proprietary systems usually use proprietary parts and a generic PS won't fit in the opening at the back of the computer (alignment of the plug and the fan with the opening, etc.)

Posted on May 25, 2009

  • Lewis Fulkerson
    Lewis Fulkerson May 25, 2009

    Then you need to find out what type of CPU you have, and the type of socket it connects to and purchase a new CPU fan. If you don't do this right away, you'll destroy the CPU!

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1 Answer

Thermal event issue


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Check the CPU fan to see if it spins freely, if not replace the fan.
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2) A Fan not working. Make sure the fan inside the Power Supply where you plug the power cord in works. Also there is a fan that sits on top of the CPU and Heat Sink. Make sure it works. Normally the system will give you an error message if the fan is not working.

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When the CPU overheats then it will shut down (i.e. thermaloverload) and won't boot up again until it has cooled down. If this is theproblem is not fixed then the CPU will eventually fail.
A faulty fan causes the problem or the fan and heat sink assembly are cloggedwith dust.
Check the CPU fan to see if it spins freely, if not replace the fan.
If the fan and heat sink is clogged with dust the remove the dust and make surethe vents are clear and dust free. Use a can of compressed air to do this.

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After about 4-5 minutes of operation, the computer shuts off unexpectedly.Everything else appears to work OK, internet access, etc. It doesn't appear to be overheating, but can't be sure.


A computer that shuts off unexpectedly is most of the time caused by heat. Check if the fan in the power supply is working fine by checking the back of the computer. You can take out the CPU too, clean it properly before adding a new layer of thermal paste. In this way, the heating issue will be eliminated.


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Yes, it probably is the processor over heating, the bios then shuts the system down to save the processor from damage.
The only way to cure this is by taking the heat sink and fan off the processor, wiping all the old coolent solution of the processor and fan then reapply new coolent, this should solve the shuting down issue.

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Shutsdown without notice could it be the fan mor fans not working


This is typical of a overheating (thermal shut down) CPU problem.
When the CPU overheats and shuts down, it won't bootup again until the CPU cools down. If this is not fixed then the CPU will fail.
This problem is caused by either a faulty fan or the fan and heat assembly is clogged with dust.
Check the fan to see if it spins freely, replace if faulty and clean the dust off the fan and heatsink assembly.
Also apply fresh thermal paste to the heatsink/CPU.

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It could also be the CPU "heat sensor" causing a "thermal" shutdown.
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see does the laptop stay on longer. Thermal paste dosen't usualy "go" unless the heat sink has be detached from the CPU.

I think as you say either the fan or I think the heat sensor.

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