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Has your computer been randomly shutting off for no reason? Chances are that your laptop is overheating and isn’t able to cool down. When this happens, the laptop will automatically shut down as a way to prevent any damage from happening to the components inside.

But how do you go about fixing this problem?

Here are a few things you can try to get your laptop to cool down.

Give It Enough Airflow

A computer overheating is a good sign that your laptop isn’t getting enough airflow. Most laptops aren’t designed with this in mind and push this off to the consumer to figure out. This is why there are specific stands that help increase the amount of air that your laptop can intake to cool itself off.

Keep your laptop off of flat surfaces, as this limits airflow the most. A good DIY option is to get a baking cooling rack and set it on that. It isn’t the optimal solution, but it might fix the problem.

An actual cooling stand is a preferred method to cool down your laptop. These stands have ventilated slots with extra fans that can help push cool air into the laptop. It also works as an extra barrier to protect from dust.

Clean Out the Dust

If airflow around the laptop isn’t the problem, it could be the airflow inside the laptop. When the laptop pulls cool air in, it brings along any tiny particles of dust and dirt with it. These items don’t get pushed out as effectively as air and can start to build up over time.

When the dust builds up, it builds on the fan and the ventilation slots. To learn how to check if the laptop is overheating from excess dust, see where the ventilation slots are on the laptop.

Put your hand an inch away from the slot and see if hot air is blowing out. If there is none, you can visibly look to see if any dust has built up around that slot. You can try wiping it away to see if that helps.

If you can’t wipe it away, you’ll have to open up the laptop to see what the damage may look like. When opening up a laptop, ensure that you’re putting the screws in the same order that they came out, as these screws might not all be the same size.

Check to See If Anything Is Damaged Inside

Once you’re inside the laptop, ensure that nothing is damaged inside. A laptop can overheat from a damaged fan, heat pipes, battery, and even CPU.

The damage can look like physical damage from the outside, they might be dents or chips. If the battery is damaged, safely remove it from the laptop and look to get it replaced. A damaged battery runs the risk of catching fire and the chemicals inside are hazardous to your health.

If nothing is damaged, still unplug the battery to avoid any electrical shock. Using a can of pressurized air, you can blow out the excess dust on the components that may be causing your laptop to overheat.

Most components on the laptop motherboard are soldered on, with the exception of the battery and fan. If you find that any items are damaged, it is best to take the laptop to a professional repair shop. They can order the correct parts and replace them without causing any harm to the surrounding components.

See If Any Programs Are Utilizing Too Much Power

If nothing above addresses the problem, you might still be asking, how do you know if your laptop is overheating? You can check the programs that are running in the background of your laptop.

Certain programs don’t know how to toggle off using your laptop, which makes it over-utilize the CPU and RAM, which can lead to a shutdown from excess heat. When programs are downloaded, they are meant to be optimized for the performance of your computer. Without this optimization, it pushes the laptop past its limits.

To check the heat of the components, you can open up the task manager (PC) or activity monitor (Mac) to see what is happening with your components. They’ll tell you how much of their processing power is currently in use and what temperatures they’re running at. Anything above 70 to 80 degrees Celsius is a bad sign.

Try uninstalling these programs or updating them to see if this addresses the problem. If you’re asking, ‘why is my Mac overheating for no reason?’, this could be the cause. Setapp explains more about how to fix this problem with their guide.

Your Laptop Might Not Handle the Game Settings You’re Playing At

If your laptop is overheating when playing games, chances are that the game is running at too high of a graphics setting for your laptop to handle. A good way to test this is to open up a game that doesn’t need a lot of graphics processing power and see if that causes the same problem.

If it doesn’t shut down, then go back to the other game and adjust the settings on it. You can reduce the graphics to low or medium and turn off excess functions like shadows and particle effects.

Most laptops aren’t designed with gaming in mind. Instead, they use an integrated graphics processing unit that comes built into the CPU. This delivers suboptimal performance, as the CPU is handling both the data and the graphics.

Use These Tips If Your Laptop Is Overheating

If your laptop is overheating after trying these tips, then your laptop might be on its last leg. Laptops don’t last forever, unfortunately. They pack a lot of heat into a tiny space, which will eventually slow the computer down to being unusable.

If you want to learn more about taking care of your laptop, then be sure to check out the rest of the blog. Know someone with an overheating laptop? Share this article with them to see if any of these tips help them out.