Laptop overheating is very common for hardcore gamers. Some gamers take it seriously and look for the solution, while others ignore it. And as you are reading this article, you must be one of them who want to know how to keep laptop cool while gaming.
Overheating is a great problem that gamers face while gaming. It doesn’t only ruin the gaming experience but also causes premature hardware failure. Therefore gaming laptop manufacturers like Razer, Asus, MSI try their best to keep laptops cool.
But still, as gaming laptops have to deal with heavy workloads and hardware-intensive tasks, they often get hotter, which may result in bad performance or a game crash.
Therefore, users need to know what makes their laptop overheat and what are ways to keep it cool. Also, maintaining the temperature of a laptop extends its lifespan and helps you get the most out of your investment.
Gaming laptops are designed to perform hardware-intensive tasks more efficiently. Modern games require high processing and graphics power to run smoothly. Therefore, when you play hardware demanding games, your laptop puts so much pressure on the processor and the graphics card which generate a lot of heat.
Also, since gaming laptops are compact and slim, airflow is restricted which results in overheating. There are limited vents positioned in a laptop to maintain ventilation.
However, overheating is normal for gaming laptops, especially while you are running intensive tasks like gaming, software compiling, video editing, etc. But when it exceeds a certain temperature then you must be concerned. Overheating can damage your laptop’s internal hardware and affect your gaming performance.
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How to tell if your laptop is overheating?
Everyone knows what overheating is. But if you fail to detect if your laptop is overheating or not then you won’t be able to take the necessary steps quickly. Therefore, to help you out, here I am mentioning few signs that indicate overheating.
- Your laptop works slowly and takes longer than before to perform usual tasks.
- Your laptop’s cooling fans spin very fast.
- Even basic programs are not running smoothly.
- Your CPU temperature exceeds the limit when you open games.
- The bottom part of your laptop gets hotter.
- You experience sudden shuts down and system crashes.
- You get error messages that the laptop is overheating.
How to keep laptop cool while gaming?
Here to few tips that would help you to keep laptop cool while gaming.
1. Place your laptop on a flat surface
You must have noticed that most laptops have their air intake vent located at the bottom. So, in order to maintain proper ventilation, you have to make sure there is enough space between the bottom panel and the surface.
Therefore, proper placement is very important if you want to prevent overheat. When you place the laptop on an uneven surface like pillows, blankets, or any padded surface then your laptop can’t ventilate properly and gets hotter. Also, placing it on thighs can enclose the vents.
To prevent your laptop from overheating, you need to make sure that the laptop’s vents are not blocked. Place it on a hard surface such as a tabletop, so that the rubber feet can raise the laptop enough to maintain proper ventilation.
Also, when your laptop becomes so much hotter, you can try moving it to the floor, since the air coming from the floor is much cooler than the air surrounding them. It is a quick solution.
Moreover, a laptop stand can help you maintain proper ventilation by elevating your laptop at a comfortable angle.
2. Use a laptop cooling pad
If you want to control your laptop’s temperature more efficiently then using a laptop cooling pad is one of the most effective and inexpensive ways. When your laptop’s built-in cooling is not performing well enough then it can help you to prevent overheating while gaming.
It is a flat surface where you can place your laptop. Gaming laptop cooling pads can have up to 5 fans that blow air into your laptop’s air intake vents from the bottom and maintain proper airflow. They are designed to help your laptop’s internal cooling system more efficiently by improving air circulation.
A decent laptop cooling pad can help you reduce your computer’s temperature by about 5-10 °C. Also, cooling pads are relatively cheap, so it is worth trying one out.
However, there are some gaming laptops that release warm air from the bottom side. If your laptop also does the same then using a cooling pad may result in negative. So, before making a decision, make sure your laptop is compatible with cooling pads.
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3. Proper cleaning & Maintenance
When air circulates through the internal cooling system of your laptop, it is natural for the dust to accumulate inside over time. Dust can create a great hindrance to the cooling performance of your laptop and affect the heating.
So, if you want to prevent overheating, it is crucial to clean your laptop from the inside.
On desktops, it is quite easy to keep them clean since you have the ability to open the case and clean it from the inside. But unfortunately, laptops’ sealed and compact designs don’t allow you to do that easily.
Therefore, people often choose to blow compressed air through the vents to get rid of dust, but unfortunately, this doesn’t work. Because, when you blow compressed air inside your laptop, it usually results in dust and other material dispersing into the interior instead of being removed. Also, blowing heavy compressed air may end up damaging your laptop’s components.
That’s why we suggest you clean your laptop by taking it apart. You can do it yourself using a screwdriver. But if you don’t have enough knowledge about the laptop’s internal parts then you can seek the help of an expert. Before taking it apart, make sure you go through the laptop’s manual to know if it voids the warranty.
4. Apply new thermal paste
Thermal paste is a silvery-gray substance that transfers the heat between the CPU, GPU, and the heat sink to dissipate that heat. But eventually, it may no longer be effective enough to dissipate heat properly and result in overheating issues. Therefore, it is recommended to close those programs, especially when you run hardware-intensive applications such as games.
Also, manufacturers often do very shoddy work when it comes to applying the thermal paste on a laptop’s CPU and GPU. Even sometimes they don’t apply the thermal paste at all. So, applying new thermal paste can help you reduce the overall temperature of your laptop while gaming.
Tech experts recommend users reapply the thermal paste at least once every 1-3 years to increase the connectivity between your processor, graphics card, and the heat sink. Don’t worry, thermal paste is very cheap and you can easily purchase it from local computer retailers or online retailers.
Before you reapply thermal paste, make sure you remove the old thermal paste using a brush, blade, screwdriver, or a bottle of rubbing alcohol. After that, apply the new thermal paste without spilling it off on other components.
However, if you are not able to do it yourself then it is recommended to seek the help of a computer technician. Also, make sure you use the right thermal paste as it differs depending on your laptop model.
5. Close unnecessary programs
If you have multiple programs running in the background while gaming then it will put a lot of stress on your processor, generating a lot of heat.
You can manage unwanted tasks from the Windows Task Manager. There are several ways to open the Task Manager application. The easiest way is to use the “Ctrl+Shift+Esc” or the “Win+X” keyboard shortcuts.
Under the processes tab, you will see all the applications and programs that are running in the background. You can also see how much memory and CPU those applications are consuming. Right-click on the process that you want to close, and click on the “End Task“.
Since the laptop’s temperature is directly linked to its workload, closing unnecessary programs will help in cooling your laptop. So, make sure there is no program running in the background while gaming.
6. Optimize in-Game graphics settings
Every gamer likes to play their favorite games at the maximum graphics settings possible. High graphics settings deliver better visuals and make the game look more realistic.
However, when you max out your in-game graphics settings, it puts so much stress on both your laptop’s processor and graphics card, especially when you play hardware-demanding games. This extra stress leads to the processor and graphics card generating a lot of heat that you feel while gaming.
Also, modern games require heavy processing and powering power in order to give you a better experience. But normal laptops are not capable to perform those tasks smoothly. So, if you don’t have a gaming laptop but want to experience modern games then it is better to run them on low graphics settings to prevent your laptop from overheat.
So, if you want to keep your laptop cool while gaming then decreasing the in-game settings can be an effective solution. However, if you have some money then you can invest in an external graphics card to boost up your laptop’s gaming performance.
7. Play games in a cooler room
The place where you are using your laptop also influences the temperature. If you play games in a hot atmosphere then it is normal for a laptop to get cold.
Therefore, in order to prevent your laptop from overheating, you should make sure the room where you are playing games is cool and there is enough ventilation, especially in the summertime. Keep the room as cool as possible.
For gaming, the optimal temperature range is 10-30°C. If you maintain your room temperature in this range then your laptop’s cooling system will be able to do its job much efficiently and keep your laptop cool.
However, if your room temperature gets above 30°C then it is recommended to play games in an air-conditioned room. Also, make sure you keep your laptop out of direct sunlight as it may raise the internal temperature and cause hardware damage.
Following the steps mentioned, you will be able to keep your laptop cool while gaming. If you apply these methods then you will see a significant improvement in your laptop’s cooling system performance and experience better gaming performance.
Also, we have shared few signs that indicate overheating. If you notice any of those signs in your laptop then you should take immediate steps to make it cool.
If none of the methods outlined above helped you cool down your laptop then there might be defective hardware in your laptop which causing this problem. In this case, you should contact the manufacturer and claim your warranty. The manufacturers can guide you properly as they are familiar with such issues.
However, we do not recommend you tinker with a laptop if you don’t have enough knowledge. As some of the methods we have mentioned in this article may require taking your laptop apart, make sure you go through your laptop’s instruction manuals to know about your laptop’s warranty policy.
We hope that you will be able to reduce your laptop’s temperature by using these tips.
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