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My Lenovo Z460 sometimes makes a ticking sound like a timebomb. Now it wont even startup........ Its less than a yr old. This only started happening 2 days ago

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The only two moving parts inside your laptop is the Fan for cooling in the Fan/Heatsink assembly, and the Platters inside the Harddrive.

[A Platter inside a Harddrive resembles a CD or DVD disk. There are several Platters inside an average Harddrive.

The Platters spin inside the Harddrive via an electric motor. (Spindle Motor)
Each Platter is coated with a magnetic media. The magnetic media is arranged in an information pattern of 0's and 1's.
1 being ON, 0 being OFF.

The magnetic media is arranged by the Write portion of a Read/Write head.
There is a Read/Write head above EACH Platter, and below each Platter.

(If there are 6 Platters, there will be 12 Read/Write heads. Two for each Platter. One above the Platter, one below the Platter)

Each set of 2 Read/Write Heads are held by an arm. An Actuator Arm.
The Actuator Arm moves the Read/Write Heads back, and forth across the Platters.
(The Actuator Arms are moved by an electric motor also. An Actuator Motor)

The Platters area is divided into Sectors and Tracks. Much like the design of a CD or DVD disk.
(Sectors being pie shaped wedges on the area of the Platter, Tracks being concentric circles going around the Platter.

More detailed information on the construction of an average Harddrive can be found here,

http://computer.howstuffworks.com/hard-disk.htm ]

The Read/Write Heads 'float' above, (And below) each Platter at a VERY close distance to the Platter.
(When in full operation, the Actuator Arm can move a Read/Write Head back, and forth across a Platter, at Hundreds of Times a Second!)

It is possible for a Read/Write Head to 'crash' into a Platter, and remove some of the magnetic media. This means it has removed some of the information stored on the Platter.

Some of the information stored on the damaged Platter may be the Operating System.
(Windows XP and Windows 7 are two examples of an O/S. Operating System)

If some of the Operating System's boot files are damaged, the Actuator Arms for the Read/Write Heads will make a ticking sound.
This shows what transpires,

http://computer.howstuffworks.com/hard-disk.htm


However the most common problem with a laptop is that it's dirty inside. Laptop's in general have a poor cooling design. All of the hardware parts are crammed into one tiny box, with a single small fan to cool them.

Air is drawn into the IdeaPad Z460 and over, and around the fins of the Heatsink.
Dust, dirt, etc., is also drawn in with the air.
In time this can clog the cooling components of the laptop, and cause it to overheat.

[A typical Heatsink is constructed of a metal plate with tall, thin fins protruding from it.
The plate of metal absorbs heat from whatever object it is placed against, and the tall, thin fins absorb heat from the plate of metal.

The tall, thin fins then radiate the heat away. Air flow helps carry the heat away from the fins.
Dust, dirt, etc. can form in-between the fins, and also coat them. This greatly reduces the cooling capacity of the cooling system]

A Processor is designed to operate at a certain temperature. (Thermal Range)
If this temperature is exceeded the Processor turns off. (BIOS turns it off)
This is a built-in fail safe system designed to keep the Processor from burning up.

It could be that the Fan is damaged, and is no longer spinning, or spinning intermittently.
There may be a piece of foreign material (Dust, dirt, etc.) touching the blades of the fan, causing a ticking sound.
And/Or the bearings for the Fan may be bad. This cause the Fan to tilt, and the blades to hit the fan's shroud. (Outer casing)

ALL power removed a can of compressed air for computers can be used, to try to dislodge the foreign material.

Sometimes though a can of compressed air for computers will not do the job.
In this case the laptop must be opened up, and the foreign material removed, and/or the Fan replaced.

Can a Fan go out in a laptop that is only a year old?
Yes.
A dirty environment inside the laptop can greatly speed up the demise of the cooling Fan.
The Fan may be of poor quality, and the fan's bearings lubrication may be inadequate.
This would cause damage of the fan's bearings.

I would like to suggest that you tilt the laptop up on one side, and use a flashlight to observe through the intake duct grille on the bottom of the laptop.
Turn the laptop on, and see if the cooling Fan is spinning. See also if it spins intermittently, or looks to be spinning slower than it should.

You may wish to try to clean your laptop, and/or replace the cooling Fan, if needed.

This is Lenovo Support, and the download page for the HMM for the IdeaPad Z460 Notebook PC,
(Hardware Maintenance Manual. Essentially a Service Manual),

http://consumersupport.lenovo.com/hk/en/Guides/Guide_list.aspx?CategoryID=633979

On this page click on the LAST file listed -
Lenovo IdeaPad Z460/Z465 Hardware Maintenance Manual
(Click on the blue View all the way to the right)

This is a PDF file. The computer you are on now has Adobe Reader on it which uses PDF files.
Allow up to 30 seconds to see the first page after you click on the file link. Additional time may also be needed to fully download the PDF file.
(Downloading just now took 22 seconds to see the first page come up, with no additional time needed)

Suggest you start with Page 6 which deals with Anti-Static Precautions.

[From me;
ALWAYS remove ALL power to the laptop before working on it. Remove the AC adapter (Charger), and Battery.
You will be touching HIGHLY sensitive hardware components that are Static shocked very easily.
It is recommended that you wear an ESD wrist strap, (Average cost about $6), and have it's alligator clip attached to a good ground source.
I clip to the metal frame of an empty desktop computer case ]

Page 41 deals with the Fan Assembly and Heatsink Assembly.

Have further questions or need guidance please state in a Comment.
Regards,
joecoolvette

Posted on May 22, 2011

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It probably is the disk-drive that has failed.
So, the "bad news" is all your data files probably are "lost", unless you have been making backups.
But, the "good news" is that "less than a year old" means that it is still under the Lenovo warranty.
Lenovo will replace the disk-drive, at minimal cost to you.
You'll need to reinstall Windows, and restore your files from your "backup".

Posted on May 22, 2011

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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