Do Gaming Laptops Overheat? Unlocking the Real Truth!

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Do Gaming Laptops Overheat

When it comes to gaming laptops, there’s nothing more frustrating than experiencing overheating issues. Not only does it impact the performance, but it can also cause long-term damage to your device. In this post, I will be diving deep into the topic to answer the question, do gaming laptops overheat?

I will also include common causes, warning signs, and offer some effective solutions to keep your laptop running at optimal temperatures. Whether you’re a serious gamer or just looking to prevent issues down the line, this blog post has you covered.

Do Gaming Laptops Overheat?

Gaming laptops can overheat due to high performance demands, lack of proper ventilation, and other factors such as poor maintenance. Overheating can impact performance and cause severe damage. Proper cooling solutions, maintenance, and monitoring can help prevent this from happening.

That said, I own several gaming laptops, and my most recent model is the Razer Blade 15. Contrary to what a lot of users might think about Razer laptops. This gaming laptop handles heat really well.

I tested my laptop to answer a common question, do Razer laptop overheat? You may be surprised as I was that it did not overheat while running the resource hungry game, Call of Duty Warzone 2.

Here are the results below, using HWiNF0 software;

Razer Blade 15 Temperature Test Playing Warzone Without a Cooling Pad
Results Without a Cooling Pad
Razer Blade 15 Temperature Test Playing Warzone With a Cooling Pad
Results With a Cooling Pad

However, the Razer Blade is an excellent laptop that features a vapour chamber cooling system which from the data I have seen across the web this cooling system seems to be the best cooling system structure. Compared to traditional cooling systems with copper heat pipes and multiple fans.

If you check out my article listing the best laptops with the best cooling systems, three of the top eight gaming laptops feature the same advanced vapour chamber cooling system as the Razer Blade laptops.

Now let’s dive into the main causes of overheating.

My Current Gaming Laptop Collection
My Current Gaming Laptops I Use For Testing

What Are The Signs A Gaming Laptop is Overheating?

An overheating gaming laptop can lead to serious damage and why it is imperative you know the signs before it is too late. Some of the signs that a gaming laptop may be overheating include:

  • The laptop making loud fan noise
  • The laptop fans running faster while idle
  • The laptop shutting down unexpectedly
  • The laptop feeling hot to the touch
  • Performance issues such as frame rate drops
  • Monitoring software reporting high temperatures
  • You see errors such as, “Thermal Shutdown Occurred”
  • Lines start to appear on the display
  • You hear a popping or crackling noise
  • The battery life may decrease significantly

What Are the Main Causes of Overheating?

When it comes to overheating in gaming laptops, there are several factors that can contribute to this. The first is poor ventilation. Most gaming laptops have a limited number of air vents. If blocked, the internal temperature of the gaming laptop can quickly rise and lead to overheating.

This can be exacerbated by dust build-up within the laptop, like on the fans and vents. You could have the best gaming laptop in the world, if something is blocking the ventilation, it can be disastrous.

Another factor that can contribute to overheating is the use of high-performance hardware. Gaming laptops with powerful processors and graphics cards will generate a lot of heat. This can put a huge strain on the cooling system, again, causing the temperature to rise.

Common Causes That Can Lead To Overheating

  • Running resource-intensive applications: AAA games, video editing software, or other rendering software, can all put a lot of stress on the hardware, causing the internal temperature to rise.
  • Overclocking: If you increase the clock speeds of the processor, or the GPU beyond the manufacturer’s recommended settings. This can lead to increased heat output.
  • Power management settings: Incorrect power management settings can cause the processor and GPU to run at full speed. Again, this can lead to overheating.
  • Faulty cooling system: A malfunctioning cooling system can cause the internal temperature to rise. Say if the fans were not running at full speed when under heavy load.
  • External environment: Using a gaming laptop in a hot environment or placing it on a soft surface like a bed or couch can impede airflow. This can also attract dust, hairs, and other debris.
  • Poor Maintenance: Gaming laptops should be cleaned regularly, using compressed air and a lint cloth to keep dust at bay. Poor maintenance is one of the biggest factors for high temperatures.

How to Prevent Overheating?

To prevent overheating of your gaming laptop. First, always keep the air vents clean. Dust and debris build-up can impede airflow and cause the internal temperature to rise. Use a can of compressed air to blow out dust and debris from the air vents.

Another step you can take is to use a cooling pad. A laptop cooling pad or laptop stand is an external device that sits under your laptop and provides additional airflow to effectively dissipate heat. This can help reduce the internal temperature of your gaming laptop by as much as 10°C (50°F). Cooling pads also have legs that you can prop up to help elevate your gaming laptop further. 

Use a Laptop Cooling Pad
The Thermaltake laptop cooler is one of the best

You can also use software to monitor the internal temperature and adjust or reduce the settings in the games you play. You can also use software such as MSI Afterburner to lower the clock speed of the GPU to reduce heat output. Here are some other things you can do.

9 Effective Steps to Stop Overheating

  • Clean the laptop’s vents and fan regularly to remove dust
  • Keep the laptop on a hard surface and elevate it to allow airflow
  • Close unnecessary programs and windows to reduce strain on the CPU
  • Adjust power settings to lower the CPU usage and clock speed
  • Use a suitable laptop cooling pad to help dissipate heat
  • Keep the gaming laptop in a cool, well-ventilated area
  • Avoid using the laptop on a bed or pillow, this will block the vents
  • Keep the laptop’s software and hardware drivers up to date
  • Monitor the temperatures of the processors using a tool such as SpeedFan

How to Solve Overheating?

If you feel your gaming laptop is already overheating, you should turn the device off ASAP. Then, unplug all devices like your gaming mouse, controller and headset. Then disconnect the device from the AC outlet. Leave it to cool down to a safe temperature before figuring out why it is too hot.

Next, check for dust and debris build-up around the air vents and fans. If so, use a can of compressed air to blow through the vents. Then, turn the laptop on its side and blow air through the keyboard.

You may also need to open up the laptop to clean the inside. But be extremely careful, before touching any components, ground any static electricity by touching a metal object with both hands.

Helpful Content: There is a great article here showing you how to keep a gaming laptop cool the right way. It is worth a read if your laptop is too hot!

Next, check that all of the hardware drivers are up to date, especially the GPU drivers. Outdated drivers can cause all kinds of problems. Also, check for Windows updates and then restart your gaming laptop.

You can then install software to monitor the temperature of your laptop. I recommend downloading HWMonitor or Core Temp. This software is used for checking GPU and CPU temperatures while under load. You can also use SpeedFan to check that the fans are working correctly.

With MSI Afterburner, you can also try lowering the clock speed of the GPU or the processor by Undervolting. This will help reduce the heat output. If you still see that the temperature of your device is too high, try lowering settings, and reducing programmes in Windows.

If the above steps do not solve the problem. You may need to contact the manufacturer to have the laptop serviced before it is too late. Hopefully your gaming laptop is still under warranty.


This diagram illustrates how poor ventilation, high-performance hardware and dust build-up can lead to overheating and how using a cooling pad and software can prevent and solve the problem.

graph LR A[Poor ventilation] –> B[Overheating] A[Poor ventilation] –> B[Overheating] C[High-performance hardware] –> B[Overheating] D[Cooling pad] –> B[Overheating prevention] E[Software] –> B[Overheating prevention] B –> F[Overheating Solution]

Conclusion

Overheating is a common problem among gaming laptops, especially older models. But it can be prevented and solved with a few simple steps. Keeping the air vents clean, using a cooling pad, and monitoring the temperature of your laptop are all effective ways to keep on top of overheating. It is also a good idea to check the hardware and software settings.

Hopefully, this post has answered your query? If so, please consider subscribing to my newsletter. I buy and test gaming laptops and other gaming laptop accessories so users like you know what’s best.

Thanks for Reading, Cya Next Time!

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