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My engine compartment fan runneth over

Engine

Model: Boxster, Year:2005, Mileage:33,000, Type of use:Street use only
I have a 2005 Boxster with the 2.7 engiwne. There is apparently a fan in the engine compartment that keeps the compartment itself cool. Mine seems to run nearly all the time, even when the outside temperature is below 45 degrees. It makes the car sound like a vacuum cleaner most of the time. Is this normal, and is this fan necessary? Would it help to remove the plastic plates that mostly block off the side intakes? Thanks.

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