03-23-2011 08:19 PM
Alright, so I've got a bit of a problem with my Toshiba Laptop. It's about 4 years old and has rarely given me problems, until recently. The model number is Toshiba Satellite A200-TJ5
On Monday, I decided to play a video game in the morning and to my surprise the laptop crashed within 2 minutes. I didn't think much of it, so I restarted the laptop only to find that the onscreen image appears "broken" or distorted. The laptop doesn't even load but instead goes straight to a BSOD while windows is trying to load. Since the image is distorted I can't really tell you what it says. The laptop shuts down on this screen and if I reboot it I get the same distorted image and BSOD issue. I have to leave the laptop off for about 15 minutes, then it started up just fine.
So I decided to stream a video but within ten minutes, the laptop crashed again. I then got the distorted image and BSOD problem, so I waited another 15 minutes. After some testing I realized that now I can't play any video games, or watch any videos because the laptop keeps crashing when I do these things.
I figured, maybe the fan is dusty. So I get my compressed air spray and send it into the vents, but there was no dust since I had cleaned it earlier this month and I also use a cooling pad.
So I downloaded a program to monitor the temperatures of the hardware. The CPU and hard drive seemed fine, but I noticed right away that my video card has jumped to 70 Celsius, and my computer only just started and doesn't feel hot at all. So I tested this and I noticed when I played any video game the video card temp jumps up quickly and reaches 100 Celsius after about 1 minute, and then my computer crashed. I streamed a video and I noticed a slower increase, but after 10 minutes the video card temp jumps to 100 Celsius and it crashes. During this the CPU temp was around 66 Celsius, but I think that's normal.
Also, I have windows fully updated and all drivers as well.
Here's a screenshot of the temp when my computer is on idle after just being started:
03-24-2011 09:24 AM - edited 03-24-2011 09:52 AM
I think that system only has a single cooling fan in it.
66 degrees celsius would be a bit high if the CPU is not being pushed hard. but does not seem to be to bad, but the GPU is excessively high.
The most likely problems are that dust is built up and trapped inside the heatsink for the GPU to a point that compressed air cannot free it.
Other possibilities are that the thermal paste needs reapplying on the GPU, or that the gas has leaked from the GPU's heatsink causing it to no longer be able to move the heat away from the GPU, or that the fan is malfunctioning. The increased heat of the GPU, could be causing the CPU temps to run higher since they share the same cooling fan.
If you feel comfortable with a screw driver enough to feel like fixing it yourself, then here are the instructions.
Work slowly, and pay close attention to detail and make notes on where different wires connect.
Get several small containers to put screws in and put screws from different parts of the case in different containers, so that it will be easier to put the right screws back in the right locations.
I would suggest replacing the heatsink and fan both while you have it open, so that you will not have to worry about replacing the fan a week or month later.
Use good high quality thermal compound like Arctic silver 5 when reassembling the unit.
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