New drive makes noise when accessing data

I just installed a new WD Black 4 TB Desktop Hard Drive: 3.5 Inch, 7200 RPM, SATA III, 64 MB Cache,  WD4001FAEX.

It makes noises when I access data on the drive.  When I run the WD Windows diagnostic tool the drive sounds like an engine for the first 15 seconds of the test.  As a comparison I also have several Seagate drives which are whisper quiet.

Should the WD4001FAEX be making these noises?

Hi streetwolf,

During the first few seconds of the WD Dagnostics test the drive will ran through several random seeking test and this will cause the drive to make lots of noise. This part of the test is normal. If the drive passed the tests, then it should be ok.

Also, If your drive does a lot of random reads/writes, then the drive could make a little more noise than normal. Something that you can do to help reduce this is to defragment your drive. I included a link below to some common noises that a drive will make:

How to tell if the noise or sound the drive is making is normal

The drive basically has very little on it.  When I just list the Properties of a file on the drive I can hear what I guess is the head noving to the data.  Having used Seagate drives for quite awhile, which don’t make this noise or any noise for that matter, this noise got me worried that my WD drive might have something wrong with it.  The noise is sort of a clunking sound.

Also, the manufacturing date is Dec 7. 2013.  This means the drive sat on a shelf for almost a year.  Is this unusual?  When I order a new device I expect it was made no more than a few months ago.  The drive probably has firmware which might be old.  What I saw in the diagnostic progam tells me the firmware is 01.01L01.  Is there a newer one?  I don’t ever recall being able to flash a HDD.

If it seems to be a clunking sound or doesn’t sound normal to you, then I would probably replace the drive. Since you just purchased it, I would go through the place of purchase. If you can’t return it to the place of purchase, then you can setup an RMA to replace the drive through WD. I included some links at the bottom of the post.

Unfortunately, we don’t have control over a retailer/etailers stock. Drives normally only sit on a shelf for a few months but I’ve saw cases where stores find old stock and then put it on shelves to sell. It doesn’t mean that the drives are bad or have a shelf life, they should still work fine. Internal drive firmware is very rarely updated and I’m not aware of any updates for your drive’s firmware.

How to get an RMA

If you are outside the US and Canada, here is how to replace the product