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Fix “system fan failure press f2” startup message by replacing or fixing your fan tutorial

fan I drew with Paint.

Recently, I got a “system fan failure press f2” startup message, but my system fan was fine. It was spinning and did not make loud squeaky sounds.

The System fan is an important part of your computer’s cooling system if your system fan is broken, or running slowly because of damage, or dust making it spin more slowly, your computer can overheat which means it might suffer permanent damage from the heat which can’t escape because your system fan is not sucking enough hot air out of your hot computer case. Heat and computer parts is bad since heat causes computer parts to expand when it heats up and unexpand when it cools, so eventually parts will break from cracks and heat stress.

I fixed it by making sure the fan connector is connected tightly to my Motherboard 3 pin system fan plug. I also unscrewed my fan from my computer case and use a small brush like a toothbrush to brush off all the dust, and remove the protective sticker and rubber fan plug at the bottom of the fan. I used a dropper to drop a few drops of sewing machine oil, or bicycle chain oil to lubricate the 92mm fans bearings inside the fan.  I also spun the fan with my hand to see if the fans blades are spinning freely , and reattached the fan to my computer case.

When I was done, I reattached my fan to the computer case, and I no longer had the “system fan failure press f2” message when I start up my HP a1720n branded desktop since I fixed my fan two weeks ago. I heard this also happens on some HP, Compaq models of computers and ASUS motherboards. The HP a1720n desktop uses a 92mm fan with a 3 pin fan connector which you connect to the mother board.

Note: Do not screw your fan on too tight, or it might not spin freely.

What to do if your fan is actually failing?

If the fan is really failing, you need to replace the system fan with a new computer case fan which you can buy from a PC store. But, make sure to buy the right size of fan depending on your fan hole size on your case. You can try cleaning your fan if you want to save money, but it can be kind of time consuming if you take the entire fan apart to take out the dust, and lubricate all the moving parts on a sleeve bearing fan.

Here is a video I found on YouTube by ketamynx which teaches you how to clean your sleeve bearing PC fan by removing a washer on the bottom of the fan to release the propellers from the fan’s case, so you can brush off the dust, and lubricate the shaft of the fan.

If your fan has a sticker on the bottom, you can try adding a watery oil like sewing machine oil to the hole in the middle to oil the fan bearings. However, not all fans have a hole at the bottom of the motor for adding oil to it. Adding oil to your fans axle and bearings help your fan spin more freely. Sometimes, you may need to pry out a rubber plug at the bottom of the fan with your nails, a small flat head screw driver to put a few drops of oils on your fans bearings.  manually spin your fan with your fingers to make sure the fan is well lubricated.

Your fan should also be noticeably quieter after you oiled your fan bearings, and remove the dust from your fans blades.

If oiling your fan’s bearings and cleaning your fan’s blade does not help, most likely your fan failed meaning your fans motor or wiring is broken. Your fan also can be failing, or will fail in the near future within the next few months, so I recommend replacing it with a new fan, of the same size which is usually 80MM, 92MM, or 120MM depending on your computer fan mounting hole dimension size.

Buy ball bearing fans since they last for many years longer then sleeve bearings, and avoid sleeve bearing fans unless you can’t afford ball bearing fans which are only a few dollars more expensive then sleeve bearing fans. Sleeve bearing fans will fail faster then ball bearings because ball bearing fans generate less friction then sleeve bearing fans.

If none of these tips work, most likely your fan speed sensor wire, or sensor on your fan or motherboard has failed, and you either need to get another fan, or replace your motherboard with a motherboard with a working fan sensor.

Note: If your fan is vibrating a lot, the propellers are bent, or missing some propellers on the fan, or your fan is making a squealing or grinding nose, you should replace the fan with a new fan as fast as you can to prevent damage to the computer since the propeller pieces which are falling a part could spin off the fan, and hit a computer part, or yourself if the computer case is open, and the fan is spinning.

Usually a fan vibrates because it is not well balanced because the propeller is damage on a fan, or the motor is not balanced.

Grinding sounds from your fan motor mean your fan motor and fan bearings are failing, or needs to be oiled with lubricant.

9 comments… add one
  • william June 16, 2010, 9:54 pm

    Great blog , keeping me from working

  • Johnson Yip June 16, 2010, 10:25 pm

    Thanks, glad you like my blog, and I hope it helped you somehow with your work.

  • Larry June 21, 2010, 10:01 pm

    what happens if that doesn’t work?

  • Johnson Yip June 21, 2010, 11:18 pm

    You keep seeing the Fix “System fan failure press F2” message durinmg startup unless you replace the system fan or faulty motherboard with the bad fan speed sensor.

    I unplug and replug the system fan into the system fan power port on the motherboard and I haven’t seen the message in months.

    I also took out the fan and made sure it spun correctly.

  • Hp desktop computers August 6, 2010, 7:12 am

    To read more about problem with computers like CPU problem , Keyboard problem, SMPS problem etc. http://www.etechworld.net

    Hp desktop computers

  • Johnson Yip August 6, 2010, 6:40 pm

    Cool Blog, I like your template Best of luck with your blog!

  • outdoor misting fans October 19, 2010, 8:27 pm

    Your blog is very nice,thanks

  • teo January 15, 2012, 5:03 am

    propebly you hae take out from your mobo your pci card.on advanced menu change the ” the primary video adapter”
    to onboard card and the message will be gone

  • Johnson Yip January 15, 2012, 6:27 pm

    Thanks, Tae, I’m sure your comment will help people fix this fan error message.

    It is kind of weird that the mobo make a warning for the system exhaust fan on the motherboard since many computers don’t have exhaust system fans since the power supply exhaust fan is good enough to cool most average computers with 1.5GHz-2GHz CPU, 7200RPM hard drives and no dedicated gaming video card.

    I found out why I got the message. The fan was actually dieing, and one day it refused to spin, so now I just plug a working fan into the exhaust system fan 3Pin fan power plug, and have not experience this message in over a few months.

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