Dell Dimension Fan Replacement

Control: management of fans, temp/rpm monitoring via soft/hardware

Moderators: NeilBlanchard, Ralf Hutter, sthayashi, Lawrence Lee

Post Reply
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2006 2:10 am

Dell Dimension Fan Replacement

Post by rich5050uk » Mon Sep 11, 2006 2:51 am

I have an old Dell Dimension 8100 which has a P4 1.7Ghz processor. Over the years the fan cooling the CPU has become increasingly noisy. The last couple of years I have frequently removed the fan and oiled it which reduces the noise for a period of time but the frequency with which I have to do this has becoming annoying.

I would now like to replace this fan with a quieter fan. The fan is a regular 92mm case fan that sits on the back of the case under a green shroud which extends over the large CPU heat sink expelling the air out the rear of the case. This is the only fan inside case apart from those inside PSU.

The Dell fan uses a proprietary 3pin plug to attach to the motherboard so I will either need to run the fan directly from the PSU or I may try cutting the dell connecter off and connecting it to the new fan to avoid getting a fan error message each time on boot.

I want to get the quietest fan possible but I don’t know the CFM airflow rating of the current dell fan so I am not sure what the slowest I will be able to get away with and maintain a stable system at all times.

Any advice anyone can give me on what fan I should select would be most appreciated.



Posts: 63
Joined: Mon Apr 28, 2003 4:44 pm
Location: New Jersey

Post by bcat » Mon Sep 11, 2006 4:07 am

Take a look at this link and compare to your fan. Recently a friend with a Dell had the same problem and fixed it with one of these. His original fan was a different brand (I forget right now) but the same specs, as well as being thermal speed control.

Hope this helps

Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2005 10:31 pm

Post by AKTed » Mon Sep 11, 2006 9:53 am

I have a Dimension 8200 that my wife uses. It had a loud fan pretty much from when we bought it (way back in 2001). The noise gradually got worse so a couple years ago I searched the Dell Forums and discovered tons of posts about noisy fans. I ended up ordering a replacement from Dell (I don't have the part number handy, nor do you want to hear the story of what it took to order the part!) that included the shroud and fan. The replacement shroud and fan were a slightly different (quieter) design/fan that works flawlessly and almost noiselessly. But I'm not sure Dell even has the parts now. I would try the Sidewinder fan, or try for Dell OEM Fan Assemblies. Good luck.

Posts: 105
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 5:14 am

Post by vg30et » Tue Sep 12, 2006 5:03 pm

Many have tried replacing the stock dell fan with aftermarket fans and report having sporadic success. I have personally replaced my dimension 4550 fan with a 92mm nexus fan and get a "Fan failure" bios error 1 out of every 3-4 reboots. I believe this has to do with the slower fan speed of the Nexus so you may be ok if you get a faster spinning fan.

Good luck.

Chris Chan
Posts: 436
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2006 8:15 pm
Location: Michigan

Post by Chris Chan » Wed Sep 13, 2006 7:47 pm

I run my 8300 with a 92x25 YL D90SM-12, connected to molex. It boots up fine, and gives me a fan fail error on boot but doesn't halt for it. Cooling is insufficient for FaH even with this fan, in a 22C ambient. There are like no intake holes. But I digress. Anyway, it should work if you connect it to a molex, I'm pretty sure enabling ‘quick boot’ disables the fan error.

Posts: 100
Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2005 10:16 pm
Location: Bremerton Washington

Post by geekbanter » Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:50 pm

Same problem with the same computer here about 4 months back. I got a 92mm Yate loon (low speed) to replace the old fan. (Boo proprietary plugs!:evil:). I powered the fan by using one of those nifty little fan plugs I got with my vf700 (molex plug with 2-12V and 2-5V fan headers, use the 12V headers). If you don't have that particular adapter you could wire the fan straight to a molex, I also tried this without any problems. After the fan is installed and working you need to enter bios and disable the warnings at post. I don't remember exactly what the option is called, but when you make this change the computer will complain that the fan isn't working, but it will continue to load normally. Overall I didn't really notice much a difference in sound between the two fans, well, before the stock fan was worn out.

Oh yeah, keep that vacuum handy, I can't believe how much dust this computer sucks into the front of the case :shock:

Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Sep 16, 2006 10:59 am

What about for a Dimension 3000?

Post by flybrian » Sat Sep 16, 2006 11:06 am

Does anyone have any advice for a Dell Dimension 3000 with the same noisy fan problem as described above? It sounds like a 767 on takeoff. I'm looking at a Thermaltake 92mm fan ( as a potential replacement, but I don't want to experience this 'Strike F1' error.

Any advice on modifying the BIOS on a 3000 to ignore this? Last time I looked at it, I couldn't find any reference to a fan setting...

Thanks! :D

Rory Buszka
Posts: 175
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2005 4:58 pm

Post by Rory Buszka » Sun Sep 17, 2006 12:31 pm

Correct me if I'm wrong, but couldn't you just cut the connector off of the old fan and splice it onto the end of the new fan? You might even be able to tin the ends of the wires on the proprietary connector and just insert them into the holes on the 3-pin connector, and then wrap it in black tape, if your concern is with modifying the new fan.

EGD Eric
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Aug 10, 2007 12:04 pm

Post by EGD Eric » Fri Aug 10, 2007 12:09 pm

couldn't you just cut the connector off of the old fan and splice it onto the end of the new fan?
umm... Sorry if I sound like a tool, but how do you do this "splicing" thing? Do you just cut off both connectors, and shove the wires of the new fan into the connector of the old fan? Wouldn't you have trouble making them stay?

Posts: 72
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2004 9:21 pm
Location: Somewhere in Florida...

Post by geforce1 » Fri Aug 10, 2007 2:44 pm

Some of these Dell fans can be fairly loud, and of course it depends on the fan's make, the case used, and the CPU used. They tend to use fans from JMC, NMB, Nidec, and Delta. In my experiences, the Dimension 2400s tend to use the quietest fans (airflow and motor). For many other Dimensions, the motors are super loud and overpower the rest of the fan's noise across most of its RPM range.

For the Dimensions, the 92mm thermistor-controlled fans were used until the first LGA775-based Dimensions (4700, 8400) were introduced. All of the LGA775-based Dimensions in the ATX cases use a PWM fan that spins up to 6,000 rpm. As you can imagine, it's better off in a server room. The same can be said for the Dimensions in the BTX case as a 1.6+ amp 120x38mm Delta PWM spins up to 4,000 rpm. But it's fairly decent at low RPMs.

Just my 2 cents...

Post Reply