Tip & How-To about Computers & Internet

Laptop (and PC) overheating

If you have gas heat. dust, smoke, use perfumes, have pets, cook or generally live at all you have all the factors that will cause your laptop to overheat. When it overheats it will run slow or you can have a lot of blue screens or unpredictable performance or issues. In other words it gets very annoying. What happens is that the dust is pulled inside and sticks to the cooling parts. The cooking oil vapor or perfume oils make them stick even more. So eventually this dust starts to form enough of a layer (and it isn't that much of one) to insulate the cooling parts from the cooling air and the result is it overheats. So instead of getting a new laptop or spending $50 to get it cleaned every 6 month to a year here is what you do. The bottom of your laptop should never feel hot and the air coming out should never feel more than slightly over room temp. If either seem warmer time to clean. How often you clean depends on your house. It may be every few months to every year or longer.

You need a can of compressed air usually sold at computer shops as keyboard cleaners. You need a few thin pieces of something like wire. You really want something stiff and preferably something plastic but wire will work. Remove the battery and set it aside. turn the laptop upside down and place on the table (outside is good if it turns out to be really bad). Look for the cooling fan. You will see the blades hidden under a grill. You then insert a wire into each fan. This will stop the fan from spinning when you blow air across it. The air can spin it faster than it should and cause bearing damage. Use the compressed air and blow air in from the exits first. The will loosen things. Then blow in over the fan. You just need to give it a few seconds each way. Don't be surprised if all the dust you see is a small puff and that's it. It takes very little to cause some laptops to overheat. As an example of how little if you have ever seen a smoker puff out that is way more than what you will see. Take the stop wires out of the fans put the battery back in and you are done. You should immediately notice the difference in temperature.

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