Are you a person who oils their fans?

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by Astyanax, Apr 2, 2021.

  1. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    I've come to the conclusion after a fair bit of research that you should NOT oil Sleeve/Bushing fans. (Including Rifle, Hydraulic and FDB)

    1. It allows them to run faster then they were designed for.
    2. It increases Noise through turbulence (faster fans mean CFM means more noise)
    3. The oil tends to get flung out of the chamber.

    It is fine for ballbearing types, and maglevs, well they don't need it at all.


    Rather in the case you want to revive a noisy sleeve fan, the best idea is to slip the sleeve off and use a lithium type grease or a lube that has suspended lubrative solids (after cleaning of course)

    1. The speed should not increase as it does with oils
    2. The noise should not increase as much
    3. The grease will not get flung
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2021
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  2. jbscotchman

    jbscotchman Ancient Guru

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    The thought has never crossed my mind actually.
     
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  3. anticupidon

    anticupidon Ancient Guru

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    Well, glad that someone opened up this very specific topic.
    As a tech, I dealt with clogged fans and all the problems that plagued them.
    I always opened fans and cleaned the inner bearing.
    And yes, in my early days I used synthetic oils.
    Found out pretty quickly that it wasn't the best idea, because of the above mentioned reasons.
    After trail and error, found out that lithium grease works best. Or whatever is in the Würth tube.
    Not affiliated to that brand, but their grease was top notch quality and all fans with cleaned shaft and bearings and some grease applied worked even better as new.
    And so many high pitched laptop fans were reduced to a whisper...or inaudible.
     
  4. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    I didn't want to mention brands, but in my googling i came across a user who swears by Suber Lube Multiuse or CRC high temperature grease
     

  5. anticupidon

    anticupidon Ancient Guru

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    That's what's available here in Europe, German grease. As a tech, I waited with impatience to be visited by the Würth sales representative, I enjoyed their catalogue.
    Their products for cleaning PCB, grease, flux and whatever were second to none.
    Also, BASF guys provided me with some insanely good epoxy resins for reconstruction of damaged laptop hinges or chassis.
     
  6. Corrupt^

    Corrupt^ Ancient Guru

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    Same here. Fans aren't exactly the most expensive part of a PC. If they get noisy due to age, it's basically time for a replacement. Only time this ever happened was actually my PSU fan, PSU was 8 years old. Opened it up and checked the part number, ordered a new one online.
     
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  7. jbscotchman

    jbscotchman Ancient Guru

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    Yea. Fans are a cheap and easy replacement.
     
  8. anticupidon

    anticupidon Ancient Guru

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    Except when in EU a good brand fan is above 10€ (some much much more) and if you multiply, well, each penny counts.
    I speak for myself, I value everything and if something trivial as a fan can be cleaned, greased and function again, by all means I'll avoid spending money on something I already own and easily fix.
    Different approaches, but I respect everyone's choice.
     
  9. Truder

    Truder Maha Guru

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    Interesting subject. I'm guilty of lubricating my fans though only for fixing a fault and cleaning.

    When I got a Fractal Define R4 case, the fans used in the case, Fractal Silent Series R2 140mm, they exhibited a periodic hum (as best as I could describe, as if the fan wobbled periodically). I was really annoyed by this noise as otherwise the PC was whisper quiet so I decided to attempt maintenance.

    I decided to use GT85 teflon spray as I figured using something electrically safe would be more ideal as well as only wishing to lightly lubricate with the teflon film that would be left. I took the fan out of my pc, hooked the fan up to 12v pin and powered it on and sprayed the bearings whilst it was running in order to spread the lubricant easier. Let it run for a while until any excess lubricant dispersed and wiped up the remaining and then popped the fan back in and the fans have been running perfectly to this day with no noise.
     
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  10. Extraordinary

    Extraordinary Ancient Guru

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    If they rattle or squeak I do, but they're just old stock case fans so...
     
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  11. Raserian

    Raserian Member Guru

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    I have greased few older fans with machine oil, to quiet them down. It did help. As long as the fans have no bearings or electronics damaged, it's fine.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2021
  12. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    Ball or Sleeve(FDB/Hydraulic)?

    Depends on your case.

    original phantom owners could not use third party 200mm fans without a case mod.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2021
  13. Raserian

    Raserian Member Guru

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    I think I did grease both ball and sleeve bearing fans. I only removed the center sticker and put a drop of oil in it and closed the opening. They did work till I had them.
     
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  14. jura11

    jura11 Ancient Guru

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    Personally I don't oil my fans and never done that, I use most of the time fans which offers a long warranty and if they fail then usually are replaced under warranty

    To the date have only one fan which has died or rather started to squeak like crazy and this has been Noiseblocker PL2 Pro 120mm fan, that fan has been like 3 months old and failed miserably hahaha

    Not sure if I would do that on any fan, depending on the fan I would say, because some fans aee literally very hard to replace or they can cost you crazy money

    Hope this helps

    Thanks, Jura
     
  15. jbscotchman

    jbscotchman Ancient Guru

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    Good point. The two front intake fans on my Rosewill Blackhawk case are severely underperforming along with the top two exhaust fans. If you're a smoker like myself you eventually reach a point where fans just need to be replaced. Basically, I really need a new case. I posted that thread a few days ago about re-applying GPU thermal paste, but the underlying problem is really with overall airflow.
     
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  16. KissSh0t

    KissSh0t Ancient Guru

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    I have oiled some old fans before in the hopes of fixing noisy squeaks and some that were not spinning due to the original lubricant drying up.

    The main fan I just can't have die is the bigboy 200mm case fan at the top of an original revision antec 900 case, you can't exactly get a replacement for the bigboy 200 fan anymore so... if I can I'd like to keep it alive :x

    Actually, that's something I've had on my mind, trying to figure out what 200mm fan will actually fit in a Antec 900 case...
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2021
  17. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    due to the flat sides of the bigboy fan, theres not really anything still produced that fits.

    From what i've read though, if your bigboy has lasted this long its probably the ball bearing refresh, the sleeve variant had a flaw where the locking ring could break allowing the fan to spin off or fall off the frame, so a good sewing machine or magnetized motor (or teflon infused oil) should to the job after cleaning the bearing.
     
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  18. vf

    vf Ancient Guru

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    What brought this on?
     
  19. Airbud

    Airbud Master Guru

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    Case fans man, noisy case fans.
     
  20. Astyanax

    Astyanax Ancient Guru

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    I oiled a Bitfenix spectre pro instead of greasing it and it resulted in turbulence as a bottom intake fan due to going faster than the 1200-+10% it was supposed to (over 1400rpm)
     

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