Fix GPU Fans Not Spinning [5 Ways]

So you’ve finally set up your dream PC build, but only to find that your GPU fans not spinning. Before you panic, and start contemplating the hundreds of dollars you spent on this graphics card, let’s troubleshoot the issue. It’s quite possible that your GPU’s fans are just sitting idle and won’t activate till a certain temperature threshold is reached. Sometimes the issue is often small and can be fixed fairly easily. Hence let’s go over all the possible reasons why your GPU fans aren’t spinning and possible ways to fix it.

Reasons Why Your GPU Fans Aren’t Spinning

In this section, we’ll cover all the major reasons why your GPU fans aren’t spinning. Be sure to troubleshoot all of the reasons below to identify the issue.

1. GPU Fans Threshold Temperature Not Reached

If your GPU is a modern device, for example, the NVIDIA GTX series, you’ll most likely notice your fans not spinning right away. This is because most GPU’s only activate the fans after a certain temperature threshold is reached. Most modern-day GPU’s have a fan threshold temperature ranging from 55 to 60 degrees celsius. Hence, if you’ve just started up your PC you’ll probably notice that your GPU fans not spinning

This can also be the case if you’re performing any activities that aren’t putting much stress on the GPU, such as web browsing, document editing, etc. Once you power up a high-performance game, you’ll notice your fans start spinning as the temperature of the GPU increases.

2. Fan Connector Not Plugged Into GPU

Most GPUs have pin connectors for fans at the end of the graphics cards. In some cases, out-of-the-box GPUs have this cable disconnected and most PC builders forget to plug it in before popping the graphics card into the PCI Express slot. It’s also quite possible that this 4-pin connector is damaged.

However, not to worry as these parts can be easily purchased online and replaced. Moreover, make sure to check that these cables are in no way hitting and deterring the fans from spinning.

3. PCIe Power Connectors Not Plugged In

As the power demands for high-power graphics cards are on a constant rise, most present-day graphics cards are provided with a combination of six-pin (75W) or eight-pin (150W) connectors since the remainder of the graphics card’s power needs to come from its 6-pin or 8-pin PCI-E connectors. If these pins are plugged in incorrectly or not completely, the GPU will not receive enough power to supply the fans. Please note, not all GPUs have these 6 or 8-pin PCIe power connectors, for example, the GTX 1050 AND GTX 1050Ti.

Fix GPU Fans Not Spinning Issue

After starting up a game or GPU-intensive application and you still notice that your GPU fans aren’t spinning, it’s probably time you try to implement some fixes. Make sure to try out all of the suggestions below, they’re relatively easy to do and don’t require any major technical expertise.

1. Force GPU Fans To Run Using MSI Afterburner

MSI Afterburner is most popularly known for overclocking PC performance to handle more graphic-intensive games and applications. However, it can also be used to force set your fan speed to a certain rpm. After installing the software, click the settings icon, select the fan tab, and enable the “allow the user to configure” checkbox. Then click “auto” next to the fan speed slide and then move the slider to the desired speed. You should now hear your GPU fans starting to ramp up.

2. Ensure Correct Drivers Are Installed

If the latest and compatible drivers are not installed for your GPU, the fans nor the GPU will function properly when required to do so. Hence, make sure you visit the driver download pages for Intel, AMD, or NVIDIA and download the latest version of the graphics driver.

3. Try A Another Graphics Card

If you have another graphics card lying around, install it, and see if the fans are spinning. If they are, then its most likely that the graphics card you purchased is faulty and you should consider asking for a replacement.

4. Oil Your GPU’s Fan’s Bearings

This step usually only applies to aged graphics cards that aren’t spinning at the required rpm to cool your device. If you’re familiar with the PC parts yourself, lubricating the GPU’s fans will be a piece of cake. All you have to do is remove the fans (and usually the heatsink) from the GPU and you’ll find a sticker or rubber plug on one side of the fan. Once this is removed you can lubricate the fans using any household mechanical oil or silicone-based oils.

5. Clean Your Fans

Another common reason why your GPU fans not spinning is that dust has accumulated on it over time. The easiest way to clean the fans is to take a can of compressed air and blow it out. Moreover, whilst you’re disassembling your GPU make sure you take the chance to clear out the heatsink of any dust as well.

Final Words

As you can see, in most cases the fan isn’t spinning because it hasn’t reached its minimum threshold temperature for activating the fans. But if you realize that they aren’t spinning even after getting blazing hot to the point you can fry an egg on them, then its most likely another issue.

Also, if fixing the connectors doesn’t solve the problem we recommend you contact the manufacturer and ask for a replacement. If you have any questions or concerns, please leave them in the comments below.
Thanks for reading!

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