The 7 month old stock cpu fan on my Athlon XP3500 (Winchester - PIB) has recently become very noisy and increasingly has problems rotating on start up. Currently working with the side off the box so that I can give it bit of help if it stops spinning. Problem doesn't happen on every boot up and up until a week ago ran without problems - good temps and very little noise.
Don't really want to RMA as I can't be that long without a functioning pc.
Can I replace just the fan, by removing the 4 screws and screwing in a repacelment - I don't really want to have to disassemble processor, h/s and fan and re-apply thermal compound in order to replace the whole unit. If that is possible what size do I need and any recommendations?
It's best to look at the fan and see if it says what power or amps it drtaws, and replace it with a similar one.
But fans are very simple objects, and provided yu get one that will fit and runs at the same speed it should be fine.
If a bigger one will fit you may find you get the same airflow (i.e cooling) for less noise. A larger fan with the same power or amp rating (voltage is constant) will move the same omount of air at a lower rpm, hence less noise.