How to Replace a Fan That is Overheating on an HP Pavilion

Written by jennifer moore
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How to Replace a Fan That is Overheating on an HP Pavilion
(hardware laptop image by Benjamin Fontaine from

The HP Pavilion is known to have issues with its fan. The fan either becomes extremely noisy or causes the processor to overheat. This makes the computer shut down on its own soon after being turned on. To solve the problem, you need to replace the fan; however, to gain access to the fan, you have to disassemble most of the PC. The following steps will help, but you should also download the manual for your particular HP Pavilion from the HP site so you can see the diagrams while following the instructions.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Replacement fan assembly
  • Set of precision screwdrivers or jeweller's screwdrivers
  • Small plastic containers to hold screws

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  1. 1

    Turn off the computer and remove the battery and any other removable device, such as cables, memory card, smart cards, remote, external hard drives or optical devices.

  2. 2

    Remove all of the screws on the underside of the laptop with a screwdriver. Bottom case screws are letter-coded so keep them organised in small containers, each screw of a certain letter together. You may want to drop a small piece of paper into each container with the letter code of those particular screws. Keep all parts organised; otherwise, you will have a hard time reassembling the HP.

  3. 3

    Remove the optical drive by removing the screws that secure it then sliding it out towards the left. Add these screws to another small container

  4. 4

    Remove the On/Off switch cover. Turn the computer around so the rear and back of the display are facing you. Remove the three silver screws that secure the back of the switch cover with the screwdriver. Place the screws in a separate container. Turn the computer back to the front position and open the computer as wide as it will go. The screen will almost be lying flat in its open position. Turn the rear of the PC back toward you, and insert a precision or jeweller's flat head screwdriver under the outside edges of the display hinge covers, and slowly unlock the switch cover by lifting up the outside edges of the hinge covers. Swing the rear edge of the switch cover forward. Return the screen to its normal position. Disconnect the two flat cables connected to the two zero insertion force connectors. Each zero insertion force connector has a slightly darker plastic piece that needs to be pulled gently and slightly outward so the cable will slip out easily with a slight tug.

  5. 5

    Remove the keyboard. Open the computer as far as possible and lift the rear upper edge of the keyboard and swing it toward you. Lay it on the palm rest. Remove the keyboard cable by releasing the tab on the zero insertion force connector just as you did with the connectors under the switch cover. Remember to be careful or you can break the connector. Refer to the HP manual for your particular model to see a diagram of these connectors. Once disconnected, completely remove the keyboard.

  6. 6

    Turn the computer over “bottom side up” and remove the memory module cover that was previously unscrewed in Step 2. Spread the retaining tabs slightly: these are located on each side of the memory module socket. Remove the memory module, as it pops out, at a 30 degree angle.

  7. 7

    Remove the mini PCI located near the memory module bay on the underside of the computer. Spread the two retaining tabs that secure the mini PCI to the communications compartment socket. Remove the antenna cables and pull the module away at a 45 degree angle.

  8. 8

    Remove the display assembly screws, located on the back of the laptop near the hinges. Turn the laptop right side up and, with the display open, unplug the cable from the base. Remove the display so it does not fall or get in the way.

  9. 9

    Remove any other screws on the bottom base enclosure. Be sure to get them all because some can be hard to see. Take the bottom plastic base off.

  10. 10

    Remove the heat sink by turning the computer upside down and disconnecting the fan cable from the system board. Turn the computer right side up and remove the screws that secure the heat sink. Pull the heat sink out

  11. 11

    Turn the heat sink upside down, remove the screws that secure it then remove the fan. Replace with the new fan and screw it into the heat sink.

  12. 12

    Reverse the removal process to reinstall all the components.

Tips and warnings

  • When removing plastic parts, do not use a great deal of force or you can easily break them. Be careful with zero insertion connectors because the plastic lifting tabs can break if they are not gently pulled up with fingertips, and these parts cannot be replaced.

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