Laptop overheating

Posted on 2014-12-06
Last Modified: 2014-12-07
My laptop is overheating and I suspect it is the CPU fan.
Before I do that I am interested in knowing if there is a software that reports on the condition of a notebook. Is it too hot? Does it need fragmenting? Audio not working?
I've looked but have not found any.
Question by:Frank Freese
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LVL 46

Assisted Solution

noxcho earned 84 total points
ID: 40484947
You can see only the temperature of CPU using software but you cannot see the condition of the laptop. Usually the heating problem is caused by dust or hair especially if you have pets.
Try first to clean all the air holes with vacuum cleaner. Then intsall the cpu temperature detecting software abd see if it is really overheating.
LVL 88

Assisted Solution

rindi earned 83 total points
ID: 40484955
It really is better to open the case of the laptop to clean out all the dust, as the grids of the heatsink are usually very fine, and a vacuum cleaner just can't get all that dust out. Chances are you just clot it more. You need to particularly remove the heatsink so you can get to the fan and the grid, then use a brush for the dust, and a vacuum cleaner at a distance so it doesn't dirty anything else.
LVL 35

Assisted Solution

Kimputer earned 83 total points
ID: 40484958
Not all heating problems can be solved with vacuum cleaners or canned air. That's because the dust built up has created a thick blanket, and more force is needed to remove it. Usually you need to fully open the laptop, fully exposing all the internals. Only then you can remove this blanket. Since it sounds like you're not tech savvy, only a tech savvy friend or computer shop might be able to help you here.
Of course, use the vacuum cleaner tip as posted above first.
LVL 24

Assisted Solution

by:Dr. Klahn
Dr. Klahn earned 83 total points
ID: 40484964
noxcho and rindi raise an important issue about cleaning laptops.  The best procedure is to vacuum the hair and dust and lint out, preferably after opening the case and using a small point tool.  This minimizes spreading the mess around the case.

Too often a well-intentioned owner takes a can of compressed air and blasts away at the clog from outside the case.  Tthe high pressure air shoves the mess into every small crack and cranny, the fan may jam, and the clog becomes worse than it was originally.
LVL 10

Assisted Solution

10023 earned 83 total points
ID: 40484969
Some manufacturers provide the utilities you need to check hardware.  We really need the manufacturer and model number to check.
Many times a reinstall or reformat upgrade wipes out the proprietary manufacturers onboard utilities  because the computer is operational but does not get back all of the first installed software to manage the computer.
Some computers have some hardware utilities available through the boot menu..worth a check.
If use a bench marking utility for hardware called Sandra lite (free) version...don't use it until you figure out your overheating problem..this link takes you to the faq page so you can see what it does...They have been up and running and improving for a number of years....

You said "my laptop is overheating" you have evidence for that or are you just hearing the fan revving...
If the fan is revving ... i have found that it can be a setting within the driver for fan speed and it might not be your cpu fan, it could more likely be your video card..

Now back to overheating...many times there are bios setting that set alerts for overheating...I have found most of them available under the power setting of the bios..
Different manufacturers have different keys to access the back to make and model...
But you can try f1 or f2 or delete key or the first visible screen sometimes gives you a key in the lower part of the screen...
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LVL 34

Accepted Solution

Michael-Best earned 84 total points
ID: 40484984
speedfan from :


As suggest a vacuum clean may help (be sure to power off the laptop first)
Disassemble & cleaning is probably needed.

Google your model number + disassemble for instructions or post your model number for further advice.
LVL 46

Expert Comment

ID: 40484999
Well, in my suggestion I say: try FIRST......
Then if it does not help open the case and see if dust is the culprit. Maybe the contact between cooler board and CPU is no more tight. Etc etc, but for first test you do not need to open anything.
LVL 91

Expert Comment

ID: 40485229
>>  My laptop is overheating and I suspect it is the CPU fan.
 Before I do that I am interested in knowing if there is a software that reports on the condition of a notebook. Is it too hot?  << speedfan has been suggested - install it for monitoring
>>   Does it need fragmenting?   <<  Why?  that has nothing to do with overheating, plse explain
>>  Audio not working?  <<  if the audio is not working also - that has other causes thna overheating
is it or is it not Working? then i can suggest several ways to check

but the first thing to do is to stop the overheating

Author Comment

by:Frank Freese
ID: 40485543
You all have given me great information. Opening and closing a laptop is not a problem for me. The reason I suspect the fan (or possibly the heat sink) is that those components are on the left side of my laptop and that is where the overheating is occurring - from the top to the bottom.
I do have the laptop sitting on a fan driven device to generate more are and it has given me some relief.
It is not until I place an covered ice pack under the laptop that the systems cools.
I'll distribute points equally with a big Thank You to all!
LVL 91

Expert Comment

ID: 40485550
equally  - ?  i got none
there is also a flaw in  accepted answer "You can see only the temperature of CPU using software "
many give also the temp of the video chip, and disk
LVL 34

Expert Comment

ID: 40485590
Laptops are not designed well for cooling.
The HDD temp. may be the source of excessive heat thus increasing the CPU running temp. The HDD temp. can also be monitored by software.

I use Hard Disk Sentinel  
Software link:

I have room temps. over 40C during summer and must ensure that the HDD does not overheat, so I also use a fan driven device under laptops and ice packs when needed.

CPUID HWMonitor a free to use utility for monitoring all temperatures of the computer.

Download link:

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