The ventilation of a tower is essential for the transfer of heat from the interior to the exterior to be effective. If we don’t, the hot air will stay inside, and can trigger the fatal thermal throttling in the GPU, CPU or in the M.2 SSD. Therefore, we are going to see how we can connect several PC fans, as well as what tricks there are.
How to connect multiple PC fans
The fact of connecting a fan does not generate complications because the motherboard has enough connectors. The problem occurs when we want to install several and there are only 4 or less connectors for it, so we are going to observe certain tips for the installation of PC fans.
Direction of each fan
You must know that the fans only push air in one direction , so we must position them correctly to create a decent air circuit inside the case. As a trick, look at the back of the fan because there are usually some arrows that indicate where they push the air.
No arrows on the back? Nothing happens, in the fan instruction manual the manufacturer must specify it, as well as they will put illustrations of how to arrange it in the box. This is very important, especially when we are going to install several fans in the PC case .
Where to connect each fan
In most motherboards we will find 4-pin connectors with the following descriptions :
- SYS_FAN : system or case fan.
- CHA_FAN : case or chassis fan.
- PWR_FAN : fan for power supplies (don’t connect it here).
- CPU_FAN : CPU fan or processor heatsink fans.
- AIO_PUMP : for liquid cooling water blocks.
- EXT_FAN : 5-pin connector for a fan extension card (rare).
The ideal is to connect the fans of the PC in the connectors that are SYS_FAN and CHA_FAN , especially in order to reprogram them later. If you buy a fan extension card and you have an EXT_FAN, connect it there.
HUB adapter to connect more fans
It is not uncommon to see how many users have a large box in which they can install many fans. The trade-off for this is that you may find that your motherboard has insufficient 4-pin CHA_FAN or SYS_FAN connectors.
Don’t worry, there is a solution and it is a HUB adapter that with only one 4-pin connector outputs several 4-pin ports; come on, an adapter of a lifetime. All news is good with these HUBs because:
- They are very cheap.
- They provide tremendous utility.
SATA adapter for fans
Yes, as you read: use a SATA port to connect several fans . We rarely use more than 2 SATA 6Gb/s ports because we don’t usually install many SSDs; even less so with the arrival of M.2 SSDs , which have an assigned slot.
In the end, the utility is the same: power several fans from a connector. In this way, we can power up to 4 additional fans through just one connector. Of course, this can cause problems when reprogramming them later because the SATA connection is atypical for these purposes.
HUB to control all fans
The user is usually focused on connecting and running all the fans in the PC , but how are you going to control them? Well, Noctua or Corsair have their own HUB , which act as a switchboard where all the fans are connected and, thus, be able to control them all without problems.
We think it is highly recommended to buy these HUBs if you have different fans of the same brand , such as Corsair. The American brand encourages its ecosystem with its own HUB, being able to synchronize the lighting of all Corsair fans through the HUB.
So, it is not only useful for programming the ventilation curves, but also to have synchronized lighting in the box.
Shop 140mm fans
In case the PC case allows us to connect 140mm fans , we recommend this option because it will considerably increase the cooling capacity (as long as the airflow, RPM and static pressure parameters are followed).
In this way, we will not need as many 120mm fans , which gives us the problem of not having enough connectors on the motherboard. For example:
- Install 6 120mm fans (3 front – 3 top).
- Install 4 x 140mm fans (2 front – 2 top).
Extra tip: don’t over tighten the screws
It seemed useful to us to close this article with a piece of advice that will come in handy for the future maintenance of your fans. It’s always good to be proactive, and it seems that when we install them, we tighten the screws almost to the maximum “so they don’t vibrate” or “don’t come loose”.
Well, we are going to discourage you from tightening the screws too much because, over time, you will have to clean them. To do this, you will work more comfortably by unscrewing them and cleaning them on a table.
As time passes, there are boxes that have materials which can shrink from heat or from the conditions to which they are exposed. This can make it very difficult to unscrew the fan if we squeeze it hard back in the day.
We hope this information has been useful to you. If you have any questions, you can comment below and we will answer you immediately.