Regardless of models, laptops will start giving noises when they are too old. However, new and healthy laptops should not make noises creating disturbance for those sitting nearby in the meeting room or in a calm place. Remember, we are not talking about the click sounds or beeps at the startup. What we talk here is a continuous hissy sound that disturbs you and others while using the laptop. If you are struggling with the noise, here are some suggestions to fix a noisy Windows laptop.
Noisy Windows Laptop
If your laptop starts making such noises, there might be something wrong with it. The most common reasons for a noisy laptop are:
- Overheated due to malfunctioning of software or hardware
- Faulty cooling fan
- Noise due to rotating parts like hard drive or CD drive.
Let us discuss each item in more detail in the following sections.
1. Noisy Cooling Fan
The function of a cooling fan is to dissipate the heat generated inside the laptop by circulating sufficient air. If you hear loud noises coming from your laptop’s fan, it indicates that something wrong is going down there. Cooling fans generally make noises because of overheating, which is caused by the high disk and RAM usage or dirt in the vent. Some simple methods can help you fix a noisy cooling fan.
1.1. Adjust Processor Power State
One of the effective methods to fix the noise of a cooling fan is by reducing the maximum processor power speed that the CPU doesn’t overheat.
- Go to the Start menu and search “Control Panel” in the search bar.
- Open Control Panel app and select the “Large icons” in the category option.
- Scroll down to find “Power Options” and click that item.
- Click the “Change plan settings” link.
- You will see few links at the bottom of the page and click “Change advanced power settings” option.
- This will open “Power Options” dialog box and expand the “Processor power management” option.
- Now expand “Maximum processor state” and change the value from 100% to 50 or 60%. Make sure to change the value for both “On battery” and “Plugged in” options.
- Shut down your laptop and allow to cool sometime.
- Now reboot again and check if the noise is reduced.
1.2. Close Running Apps and Programs
Sometimes several apps and programs running in background cause high CPU / RAM consumption. This will lead the processor to work in full capacity and the cooling fan will not be able to cool the processor thus creating hissy sounds. In this case, check the resource consuming apps and close unnecessary apps to CPU / RAM.
- Right-click on the taskbar and open “Task Manager” option.
- Task Manager will show you all the processes, apps, and programs currently running. You can inspect which apps or programs are eating much of the memory and CPU.
- If a program is using more disk space or memory compared to others, right-click on it and select “End task”. Or simply select the app and click “End task” from the tool bar. Confirm your action to terminate the app and release the occupied resource.
If your Task Manager is showing higher activity and your fan is also louder, shutting down unused programs may reduce the load on your CPU.
1.3. Clean the Dust Out of Your Fan
If your fan is constantly making a buzzing and clicking sound then you should grab your screwdrivers and open your laptop. With excessive and prolonged use, dust and debris accumulate on the fan wings which produces louder noise when spinning faster. Take an electric duster or air compressor and clear the dust around your fan. It is also good for better airflow.
And if the fan is still giving loud rattling noises, you should consider replacing it entirely with a new one. Take out the old failing fan and put a new one in its place. Make sure to put the fan of the right size and good quality.
Note: Do not damage the back of your laptop when trying to open its case. If you are not able to open and access the fan, make sure to get help from your retailer for replacing or cleaning the fan.
2. Noisy Hard Drive
Nowadays, most laptops come with SDD (Solid State Drive) which stores data in flash memory chips. However, if you are using mechanical HDD (Hard Disk Drive) with physical rotating parts then there are lot possibilities you hear the hissing sound from hard drive. Regardless HDD or SDD, it is a warning signal if you started to hear a rattling or grinding sound. Before fixing the issue of a noisy hard drive, it is important to back up all the necessary data to an external hard drive or a flash drive. This will help to avoid data loss in case of any problems in the primary hard drive.
2.1. Use CHKDSK Tool
Check Disk is or CHKDSK is a system command line tool to check the health of your hard drive. You should run this command when you are sure that the hard drive is faulty and failing. It can also help in repairing errors and issues.
- Go to the Start menu and type “cmd” in the search bar.
- Now right-click on “Command Prompt” and select “Run as administrator” option.
- Type chkdsk c: /f/r/x in the prompt and press enter. You can replace the drive C: with the letter of your drive from the hard disk. Before starting to run this command, make sure to close all the programs to get better results.
- You will see a message like below showing the disk is in use. Type “Y” and press enter to schedule the disk checking.
- Restart your computer to scan and fix the error.
Now check the noise is reduced and you can able to work quietly.
2.2. Use Disk Management Utility
You can also fix the noisy hard drive with the help of another built-in utility in Windows.
- Press the Windows Key and the R Key together to open Run prompt. Type diskmgmt.msc in the box and press “OK” button.
- This will open Disk Management app. Right-click on your desired disk and select “Properties”.
- When you are in the Properties dialog box go to “Tools” tab.
- Click “Check” button showing under the “Error checking” section.
- If there are no problems, you will see a pop-up showing there are no need to scan the drive. However, you can click on “Scan drive” to continue the scanning.
- Wait for the scanning to complete and you will either see success message or options to fix the disk errors. Fixing the listed errors may help you to reduce the noise associated with the hard drive.
2.3. Replace the Hard Drive
If the above two methods fail to reduce the noise coming from the hard drive, the best option is to replace the hard drive and get a new one. As mentioned, go for a SDD with flash storage to avoid moving components thus reducing unnecessary noise.
3. Use Laptop Cooler
Playing HD games or using high-resolution apps need powerful and modern laptops. Though old laptops support running these apps, obviously you will start hearing noises due to overloading of processor. If you are not in a situation to upgrade the system, then the best solution is to use external cooler pad to circulate more air. These cooler pads have ventilation holes to dissipate heat and also lift your laptop to higher level for better eye/body position. Go to Amazon or any other marketplace to order your laptop cooler and check if that helps reduce the noisy sound.
The normal and healthy laptop also makes noises, but they are unnoticeable. If these noises become loud enough to interfere with your work, they are problematic. You can fix a noisy Windows laptop by reducing the noises coming from the faulty cooling fan and hard drive. Otherwise, you may need to look for external cooler pads to reduce overheating and noises.