I wouldn't be posting this but this was out of the ordinary. Last night I was playing Uncharted 2 and the fan was extremely loud. I did the vacuum cleaning of the vents. And still when I play this game the fan starts cranking up after a min or two. It's loud enough that I can't even drown out the noise with the volume from the TV. It's even louder than my computer's fan (and it's pretty loud itself). This is the first time I've seen this happen to my PS3. Oddly enough when I turn the game off and I'm at the XMB, the fan slows down after a minute and becomes silent. By the way this is a 40GB PS3 (the one released in Oct 2007, I purchased it in May 08).
Now I've been doing some reading but I want your opinions as to how to what could be happening and how I can prevent damage to my PS3. I am NOT going to do the PS3 fan test. I am thinking the thermal paste is not doing its job, hence the PS3 fan is going in overdrive right now when a game is played. But this is just a theory, and I have no way to really diagnose any further so I ask for help here.
On a side note, if necessary, I am comfortable opening up the PS3 as I've built my own computer in the past and have dealt with hardware issues multiple times.
EDIT: Forgot to mention, I applied the 3.30 update for the PS3. I did this only to keep the PS3 up to date and did not play games on it until a week later (which was yesterday). I'm not sure if this is an issue people are experiencing with the update and/or this particular game. But figured I'd throw it out there too.
If the fan is loud enough to drown out the TV, then something is wrong. Try a can of compressed duster spray and dust out the PS3. At the very least, it will be much cleaner when you open it.
I also recommend you backup your data now if you haven't done so already.
If you have a CECHH01 model, then you may have trouble putting it back together if you are not careful. If you don't do it just right, then the fans will rev up to maximum output since the contact between the CPU, GPU and heatsink is poor. If the thermal paste is working well, then there will be a very strong bond between the chips and the heatsink. Be careful not to flex the system board when taking it apart; too much flex will set you up for a YLOD.
Well, there was this one room in the Uncharted 2 single player campaign near the end of the game that I got the fans revving fairly quickly. I sat there for half an hour shooting at bad guys coming out of the respawn closet since I forgot where the magic line I had to cross was. I don't suppose you're at that spot.
All I can say to you is...BACK UP, BACKUP, BACK UP RIGHT NOW!.... In my case when the fans started working overtime, not long after I got the YLOD...I have also found this to be the case with a lot of people that got YLOD...If i was you, I would pull the ps3 apart (its not really that hard, follow the gilsky guide on you tube) and redo the thermal paste....I wish I had done that as soon as i noticed the same thing with my fan.... Good luck
Oh yeah, one thing I forgot to mention...If you follow the gilsky guide to pull your ps3 appart.You wont need to do the reflow with the heat gun, as yours is still working. And he is pulling appart a 60gb, as yours is a 40gb (same as mine) it is just a little bit different inside, so you just have to miis a few steps that he does...The 40 is actually easier to pull appart then the 60...
thats what happened to me 2 nights prior to when i got YLOD the fan was so loud louder than i ever heard it and i turned my console off then sure enough two days later playing GTA i was in a deathmatch the screen froze and i heard the ps3 power off went to turn it on bam ylod