Gaming laptops are powerful machines that can run the latest and most demanding games on the market. However, they also have a common problem: overheating. Overheating can cause your gaming laptop to slow down, crash, or even damage itself or other components.
In this article, I’ll explain why gaming laptops overheat, how to check if your gaming laptop is overheating, and how to prevent or reduce overheating.
Why Gaming Laptop Overheat?
Gaming laptops overheat because of two main reasons: high performance and poor cooling.
- High performance: Gaming laptops have high-performance components, such as the processor, graphics card, memory, and storage, that consume a lot of power and generate a lot of heat. When you play games on your gaming laptop, you put a lot of stress on these components, making them work harder and faster. This increases the power consumption and heat generation of your gaming laptop.
- Poor cooling: Gaming laptops have a limited space and design for cooling, compared to desktop computers. They usually have one or two fans, a heatsink, and some vents to dissipate the heat from the components to the surrounding air. However, these cooling systems may not be enough to handle the heat generated by the high-performance components. Moreover, these cooling systems may be blocked or clogged by dust or debris, making them less efficient and effective.
When these two factors combine, they can cause your gaming laptop to overheat and reach its temperature limit. This can trigger thermal throttling, which is a mechanism that reduces the speed and performance of your gaming laptop to prevent further overheating and damage. However, thermal throttling can also affect the gaming experience and cause issues such as lagging, stuttering, freezing, or crashing.
How To Check If Your Gaming Laptop Is Overheating?
To check if your gaming laptop is overheating, you need to monitor its temperature, fan speed, and performance while running a game or a stress test. A game is software that simulates a virtual environment and requires a lot of resources from your gaming laptop. A stress test is a tool that simulates a high workload on your gaming laptop by making it execute complex calculations or operations continuously.
There are many games and stress test tools that you can use to check if your gaming laptop is overheating, such as GTA V, Call of Duty, Prime95, IntelBurnTest, etc. You can download and install any of these games or tools on your gaming laptop and run them for a certain period of time (usually 15 minutes to an hour) to see how your gaming laptop performs under stress.
To monitor your gaming laptop’s temperature, fan speed, and performance while running a game or a stress test, you need to use another tool that can display these metrics in real-time. There are many monitoring tools that you can use to monitor your gaming laptop’s metrics, such as HWMonitor, SpeedFan, MSI Afterburner, etc. You can download and install any of these tools on your gaming laptop and run them alongside the game or stress test tool to see how your gaming laptop’s metrics change under stress.
To check if your gaming laptop is overheating, you need to compare the metrics before and after running the game or stress test. If your gaming laptop is overheating, you will notice that:
- The temperature of your gaming laptop will increase significantly and reach or exceed its maximum operating temperature. The maximum operating temperature depends on the model and manufacturer of your gaming laptop. Different gaming laptops have different maximum operating temperatures, which are usually specified in their specifications or datasheets. For example, the Razer Blade 15 has a maximum operating temperature of 100°C, while the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 has a maximum operating temperature of 95°C.
- The fan speed of your gaming laptop will increase significantly and become louder and more noticeable. The fan speed is the rate at which the fan spins to cool down your gaming laptop. The fan speed depends on the temperature and workload of your gaming laptop. The higher the temperature and workload, the faster the fan speed.
- The performance of your gaming laptop will decrease significantly and cause issues such as lagging, stuttering freezing, or crashing. The performance is the measure of how well your gaming laptop runs the game or stress test. The performance depends on the clock speed and power of your gaming laptop. The higher the clock speed and power, the better the performance.
If your gaming laptop is not overheating, you will notice that:
- The temperature of your gaming laptop will increase moderately and stay below its maximum operating temperature.
- The fan speed of your gaming laptop will remain stable and quiet.
- The performance of your gaming laptop will remain stable and smooth.
How To Prevent Or Reduce Gaming Laptop Overheating?
To prevent or reduce gaming laptop overheating, you need to address the two main causes of it: high performance and poor cooling. Here are some tips and tricks that can help you prevent or reduce gaming laptop overheating:
- Reduce the performance: You can reduce the performance of your gaming laptop by lowering the settings or resolution of your games or stress tests. This will reduce the stress and heat on your gaming laptop components. You can also use a software tool like ThrottleStop or QuickCPU to limit the maximum clock speed or power consumption of your gaming laptop manually. This will prevent your gaming laptop from reaching its temperature limit and triggering thermal throttling.
- Improve the cooling: You can improve the cooling of your gaming laptop by cleaning it regularly and removing any dust or debris that may block the air vents or fans. This will improve the airflow and heat dissipation of your gaming laptop. You can also use a cooling pad or a stand to elevate your gaming laptop and improve its ventilation. This will prevent your gaming laptop from overheating due to poor cooling. You can also replace the thermal paste or pad that connects your gaming laptop components to the heatsink with a new one to improve the heat transfer. This will lower the temperature of your gaming laptop components.
Methods to Stop Laptop From Overheating
Clean the fans and vents
One of the main reasons why gaming laptops overheat is because of dust accumulation in the fans and vents. Dust can block the airflow and reduce the cooling efficiency of your gaming laptop. You should regularly clean the fans and vents of your gaming laptop by opening the back cover and using a soft brush or a compressed air can. You should refer to your gaming laptop’s manual for instructions on how to open the back cover and clean the fans and vents. If you are not confident, you can ask a friend or a professional for help.
Use a cooling pad
Another way to prevent or reduce gaming laptop overheating is to use a cooling pad. A cooling pad is a device that has one or more fans that blow cool air into your gaming laptop’s bottom. This can help improve the ventilation and heat dissipation of your gaming laptop. There are many types of cooling pads available in the market, but you should look for those that have factors such as fan speed, fan size, fan position, price, and more. You should choose the best option according to your needs.
Close unnecessary programs
Sometimes, your gaming laptop may overheat because of too many programs or processes running in the background. These programs or processes can consume a lot of memory and CPU resources, which can increase the heat and stress on your gaming laptop.
You should close any unnecessary programs or processes that you are not using while gaming. You can do this by using the Task Manager on Windows 10.
To open the Task Manager, you can press Ctrl + Shift + Esc or right-click on the taskbar and select Task Manager. Then, you can see the list of programs and processes that are running on your gaming laptop and how many resources they are using. You can sort the list by CPU, memory, disk, or network usage and identify the ones that are using too many resources. You can then select them and click on End task.
Change in-game settings
Another reason why gaming laptops overheat is because of high in-game settings. High or Ultra settings can make your games look better and smoother, but they also put a lot of pressure on your GPU and CPU, which can generate a lot of heat. If you feel your gaming laptop overheating while playing games, you can try lowering the graphics settings or changing some options such as anti-aliasing, screen shake, etc. This can reduce the heat and stress on your gaming laptop components.
Scan for viruses
Viruses can also cause your gaming laptop to overheat by infecting your system files or deleting files. Malware can also run unknown programs in the background, which can use up your system resources and overheat your gaming laptop. You should use reliable antivirus software that can protect your gaming laptop from various kinds of viruses and help you remove any suspicious or unwanted files.
Outdated drivers can also cause your gaming laptop to overheat by making your components work improperly or inefficiently. As GPU is an essential component for playing games on your gaming laptop, an outdated GPU driver can also cause your gaming laptop to overheat while playing games. You should update your drivers regularly to fix this problem. To do this, you can use the Device Manager on Windows 10.
To open the Device Manager, you can press Windows + X key combination and select Device Manager from the list. Then, you can expand all the devices and look for any exclamation marks next to them. You can right-click on them and click on Properties. Under the Driver tab, you can click on Update Driver and then click on Search automatically for drivers. You should let the process finish and restart your system afterward.
Adjust the power settings
The power settings of your gaming laptop can also affect its temperature and performance. Some users suggested that changing power settings can fix overheating issues in gaming laptops. To do this, you can use the Power Options on Windows 10. To open the Power Options, you can press
Windows + Q or Windows + S to open search type power settings, and click on Open. Then, you can click on Additional power settings under the Related Settings option. In the Power Options window, you can find your current power plan under the Selected Plan section.
You can click on Change plan settings to change the power plan. Then, you can click on Change advanced power settings in the next window. You can expand the Maximum processor state and slightly lower the values under it. For example, if the value is set to 100, change it to 95 or lower. You can do the same for the Minimum processor state. Once done, click on Apply and OK. Note – You should check and use that value which gives you the best results.
Undervolt laptop components
Undervolting is a technique that reduces the power consumption of your laptop’s components by lowering their voltage. This can reduce the heat generated by your gaming laptop, but it can also affect the performance. As it is a complex process similar to overclocking, it is advised that you get the help of a professional for this.
Gaming laptop overheating is a common problem that affects the performance and lifespan of your gaming laptop. It happens when your gaming laptop reaches its temperature limit and reduces its speed and power to prevent further overheating and damage. It can be caused by high performance, poor cooling, or both.
You can check if your gaming laptop is overheating by monitoring its temperature, fan speed, and performance while running a game or a stress test. You can prevent or reduce gaming laptop overheating by reducing the performance, improving the cooling, or both.
We hope this article has helped you understand why gaming laptops overheat and how to prevent it. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. Thank you for reading!