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thecrafter
Punch Card
Posts: 95
Registered: ‎04-05-2011
Location: USA
Views: 33,196
Message 1 of 912

X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

Hello,

Got the X220 today, and I'll get to the chase here:

There seems to be a problem with the fan. It seems to always hover at about 90% capacity even if the computer is doing nothing. That would have been acceptable somewhat, except for the fact that it will spin at 90% speed (just estimating here) for 5 seconds, then rev up to 100% for 1 seconds, then down to 90% for 5 seconds, then 100% for one second. It's very irritating.

I believe this is related to the BIOS for two reasons:
1. All the professional reviews online kept mentioning how quiet the machine is. This is not quiet by any means. Perhaps their review machine had an older BIOS that did not exhibit this problem.
2. This happened during the installation of Windows as well, which, of course, does not use any drivers, so the Lenovo Power Manager is not the culprit.

Back to #2: The fan issue can be solved by setting the fan setting in the Lenovo PM program to "reducde fan noise dynamically" instead of the other two options. Then the fan will be silent. But why can't I use the other two options? Why must they make the fan work at full speed all the time? This is why I think this is a BIOS issue at hand.

When testing take note: Switching to "reduce fan noise dynamically" reduces the fan to silent, and you can then switch to the other two options and the fan will remain quiet. But it will only remain quiet for a minute or two, then rev up to full speed. So don't be hasty in thinking that switching to reduce fan noise dynamically will then allow you to use either of the other options without excessive noise.

ljwnow
Paper Tape
Posts: 4
Registered: ‎05-02-2011
Location: Lexington, KY
Views: 33,148
Message 2 of 912

Re: X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

Hopefully there would be a fix...

Roger99
Token Ring
Posts: 107
Registered: ‎11-27-2008
Location: United Kingdom
Views: 33,104
Message 3 of 912

Re: X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

Have you tried tpfancontrol?

Guru
Posts: 9,598
Registered: ‎12-26-2009
Location: CA
Views: 33,096
Message 4 of 912

Re: X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

I'd put on TPFanControl and a custom fan profile.

Remember to disable TPFC's number icon; it seems to cause 1% CPU usage constantly for me. Doing so would help save battery power too.

W520: 2960XM, Q2000M @ 1091/1380, 32GB RAM, 500GB&750GB HDD & 500GB SSD, FHD&MB168B+
X61T: L7500, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, XGA screen, Ultrabase
W550s: 5600U, K620M at 1164/1281, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 3K touchscreen
X200s: SL9400, 6GB RAM, 64GB SD card, WXGA+ screen
TPT1: 1839-23U
thecrafter
Punch Card
Posts: 95
Registered: ‎04-05-2011
Location: USA
Views: 33,093
Message 5 of 912

Re: X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

TPFanControl isn't an appropriate solution in my case. While it does make it silent for the most part, it still revvs up/down when the fan needs to speed up during heavy load/high temps.

 

The constant fan spinning seems to be a universal problem and is related to the BIOS (it seems 1.04 does not have this problem), so that will most likely be easily fixed. Sadly from responses on another forum, I seem to be the only one with this rev up/down issue so I think the fan I got is faulty in that regard. But since it does it EXACTLY every 5 seconds it might be a BIOS bug, but again, a few other people said their fan speed was constant

Guru
Posts: 9,598
Registered: ‎12-26-2009
Location: CA
Views: 33,055
Message 6 of 912

Re: X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

So TPFC can't override the revving behavior? Even if you force it to use fan level 1 all the time?

W520: 2960XM, Q2000M @ 1091/1380, 32GB RAM, 500GB&750GB HDD & 500GB SSD, FHD&MB168B+
X61T: L7500, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, XGA screen, Ultrabase
W550s: 5600U, K620M at 1164/1281, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 3K touchscreen
X200s: SL9400, 6GB RAM, 64GB SD card, WXGA+ screen
TPT1: 1839-23U
thecrafter
Punch Card
Posts: 95
Registered: ‎04-05-2011
Location: USA
Views: 33,041
Message 7 of 912

Re: X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

It lowers the fan speed, to say... idk, 20%, but again, every 5 seconds exactly it will rev up to ~25% for one second, then back down to 20%

Guru
Posts: 9,598
Registered: ‎12-26-2009
Location: CA
Views: 33,023
Message 8 of 912

Re: X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

That's weird. Sounds like multiple programs are trying to override each other.

TPFC should report fan RPM...


W520: 2960XM, Q2000M @ 1091/1380, 32GB RAM, 500GB&750GB HDD & 500GB SSD, FHD&MB168B+
X61T: L7500, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, XGA screen, Ultrabase
W550s: 5600U, K620M at 1164/1281, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 3K touchscreen
X200s: SL9400, 6GB RAM, 64GB SD card, WXGA+ screen
TPT1: 1839-23U
Former Employee
Posts: 3,823
Registered: ‎07-11-2010
Location: Malaysia
Views: 33,016
Message 9 of 912

Re: X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

@All,

In Power Manager, the "Optimize fan control" is set to balance / maximize / reduce noise?

 

Try booting into BIOS and see if the fan speed is increasing and decreasing randomly

 

//JameZ

thecrafter
Punch Card
Posts: 95
Registered: ‎04-05-2011
Location: USA
Views: 32,979
Message 10 of 912

Re: X220 - fan constantly on / revving up and down

JameZ:
As mentioned in my post, the fan being constantly on is mostly solved by setting that option to "dynamically reduce fan noise". It will still ocassionaly ramp up the fan during idle time but for the most part it is silent. I still get the revving when the fan is not silent.

 

And it does happen in the BIOS as well.

 

I posted this on another forum and all other users are reporting constant high fan speeds as well. Aside from one user who received his unit a week or two before the official release date through a third party supplier. He claims he does not have this issue, and said his BIOS is 1.04, while all others are 1.11 and have this issue

 

@ Colonel:

It does report the fan RPM but it only seems to refresh once every 10 seconds or so. So I can't even tell how much the RPM rises when it does rise for that one brief second. And for some strange reason, the BIOS doens't have a fan monitor built in

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