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Fans could generate electricity and damage motherboard ?

Discussion in 'Nvidia' started by Skybuck Flying, Sep 2, 2010.

  1. Hello,

    I just saw a dutch technician mention the following possibility of damaging
    a motherboard when cleaning the PC of dust and I wonder if there is any
    thruth in it, in short the technician writes the following:

    "Be carefull not to make the fans spin real fast because then they could
    start generating electricity and damage the motherboard ?!"

    How much thruth is in that sentence ?! Should motherboards be equiped with
    fan-back-surge protectors ?

    Skybuck Flying, Sep 2, 2010
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  2. Skybuck Flying

    Sjouke Burry Guest

    The fan itself might croak, the internally generated voltage might
    toast the control IC, but it wont blow the motherboard.
    Sjouke Burry, Sep 2, 2010
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  3. Skybuck Flying

    Tom Lake Guest

    Probably not. An electric motor can act as a generator as well.

    Tom Lake
    Tom Lake, Sep 2, 2010
  4. Clearly, that nitwit must be your older brother. It's got to be a genetic

    Seriously, dude - do you ever think about what you're writing, or do you find
    yourself constantly drifting off while your fingers are still working the
    personaobscura, Sep 2, 2010
  5. Drifting off implies he had a handle on it in the first place. I
    sincerely doubt it.

    Glenn Gundlach, Sep 2, 2010
  6. Skybuck Flying

    Tom Lake Guest

    Thank you for that advice! I tried it and now instead of a chilly 70 deg C
    my system runs
    at a nice, toasty 250 deg C. Much nicer! Plus, I can read by the red glow
    of the CPU!

    Tom L
    Tom Lake, Sep 2, 2010
  7. **** off back into my killfile. *plonk*
    Mike Tomlinson, Sep 2, 2010
  8. Skybuck Flying

    mpm Guest

    Don't forget, Skybuck.
    The fan rotation is only relevant if you consider your location as
    either being north or south of the Equator.
    Fans don't generate static electricity if you're exactly on the

    See how easy it is to invent drivel, Skybuck.
    Hell, you're an amateur.
    mpm, Sep 2, 2010
  9. Skybuck Flying

    wilby Guest

    No one has yet mentioned the fan bearings being driven so fast that they
    become damaged. It is easy to destroy a ball bearing with a compressed
    air hose, especially if you are cleaning the bearing with a solvent at
    the time you over spin it.

    wilby, Sep 3, 2010
  10. Skybuck Flying

    Greegor Guest

    Skybuck Flying, you have ASPERGERS don't you?
    Greegor, Sep 3, 2010
  11. Skybuck Flying

    TVeblen Guest

    Yes, thank Christ no one has mentioned that.
    TVeblen, Sep 3, 2010
  12. Skybuck Flying

    krw Guest

    He's said as much. It's DimBulb who won't admit to the obvious.
    krw, Sep 3, 2010
  13. Skybuck Flying

    Don Guest

    Connect a light bulb to the outer edges of the fan with wire to disperse
    the energy, but make certain to place the lamp outside of the case, of
    course, to disperse the heat. Works for me, although I am not in the
    same exact location as you are -- this could make a really big
    difference according to my technician who honed his skills in Area 51,
    NV. Please post your results.

    Thank you.

    Don, Sep 3, 2010
  14. Skybuck Flying

    Arno Guest

    First, the idea is somewhat sound, as the type of motor used in a
    fan can indeed serve as generator. However the electronics do not
    support this. You can, again in theory, kill a fan this way.

    On the more practical side, a brief test with a Papst (quality-)fan
    gave me around 0.15V AC without load, so I guess mechanical damage
    to the fan is more likely than damaging the mainboard. And pulling
    off your arm with the vaccuum slipstream needed to produce
    dangerous voltages ;-)

    Arno, Sep 3, 2010
  15. Skybuck Flying

    JW Guest

    Very true.
    Not yours.
    JW, Sep 3, 2010
  16. Should motherboards be equiped with fan-back-surge protectors ?

    How many more surge protectors do we need? :)

    @[email protected] Might, Courage, Vision, SINCERITY.
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    Man-wai Chang, Sep 3, 2010
  17. Skybuck Flying

    GMAN Guest

    Its true that you should not let the fans spin while blowing the motherboard
    out using a huge compressor but a small can of compressed air is not going to
    harm the system.

    The damage likely caused would be more along the lines of ruining the fan due
    to high RPM's.
    GMAN, Sep 3, 2010
  18. There is a bit of a contradiction in this.

    If power is applied to the fan's and they start spinning, would they start
    to generate electricity as well ?


    (Instead of being spinned up by a vacuum cleaner...)

    Skybuck :)
    Skybuck Flying, Sep 3, 2010
  19. Skybuck Flying

    Rich Grise Guest

    This is true - I've seen it happen. When I was in the service, I was
    a tech and we would take bare muffin fans, loosen the rotors, and spin
    them up with shop air, then see how high the fan would fly by inertia.

    I was doing that once and the fan arced.

    Motors become generators when they're spun; whenever I blow the dust
    out of my 'pute, I block the fans from rotating, like with a pen or
    I don't know what "thruth" is. ;-) And I've never heard of a
    "fan-back-surge protector;" just constrain the fan from spinning.

    Rich Grise, Sep 3, 2010
  20. Skybuck Flying

    Payala Guest

    Yes, exactly, it is called back-EMF.
    Payala, Sep 4, 2010
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