May 31, 2022How to Keep a Gaming Laptop Cool?

As a gamer, you should know that your gaming laptop is bound to overheat, especially if you’re a hardcore gamer. Therefore, keeping your gaming laptop cool is one of the things you should be doing in order to maintain your gaming laptop’s performance.


The best gaming laptops are relatively stronger than your standard laptops because they include features that most laptops don’t have. Having a gaming laptop helps enhance your gaming experience. They’re portable and extremely powerful in terms of performance. However, its very portability and compactness are also its most significant flaws. 


Cramping all of its internal components inside with not much airspace can lead to overheating under a heavy workload. This can raise the CPU or GPU temperatures and be the cause of lagging, generally overheating. The rising temperature also raises concerns amongst users. 


Luckily, there are many things you can do to ensure that your gaming laptop does not overheat, which we’ll talk about below.

Is Overheating Normal?

Overheating in gaming laptops is normal, but it’s not healthy. 


Gaming laptops overheat because they feature a high-performance CPU and GPU that create a lot of heat when under a heavy workload. And since all of the laptop’s components are cramped inside a very small chassis, airflow is either limited or restricted, causing heat to build up and causing overheating.


Past a few degrees, you would have a reason to be concerned. Overheating causes thermal throttling, which lowers the gaming performance of a gaming laptop. It can also result in permanent damage to your gaming laptop. Therefore, you must always try to keep your laptop cool.

Why Is Your Gaming Laptop Overheating?

overheat laptop

There are several reasons why your gaming laptop is overheating. It could be due to the old operating system, faulty components, or even because of a simple mistake you’re making. Let’s talk about the specifics: 

Your Gaming Laptop’s Thermal Paste is Deteriorating

One of the first reasons why your gaming laptop is overheating is that the thermal paste of your laptop is losing its effectiveness.


You might ask, “What is thermal paste?” Well, thermal paste (also called thermal grease or thermal compound) is a silver-gray substance that is applied between the processors and the heat sink before installing a cooling solution. It will allow your gaming laptop to have an efficient heat transfer from the processor’s IHS to the CPU cooler’s base plate, which then allows the laptop to have proper heat dissipation. 


Thermal paste is essential because it helps to fill in minor flaws that would otherwise trap air particles between the CPU as well as the heatsink, stopping the CPU from cooling effectively.

Too Many Programs or Windows Open in the Background

Having too many unnecessary programs open in the background is one of the most common reasons gaming laptops (even standard laptops) overheat. 


When there are a lot of programs and windows open in the background that you’re not using, you’re adding a lot of unnecessary stress to the CPU. When you are adding stress to the CPU, you slow down the gaming laptop’s performance. Thus, making your laptop work harder in order to accomplish the tasks you are doing will result in it overheating.


To prevent your laptop from slowing down and to keep the laptop cool, make sure that you close all or any unnecessary programs and windows that you’re not using to lessen the strain on your CPU. 

Faulty Fan or Cooling System

A faulty fan is another reason why your gaming laptop is overheating. Gaming laptops are designed to withstand intense gaming sessions, which is why they have strong fans to keep them cool throughout long periods. These fans are designed to reduce or eliminate heat-related damage to your gaming laptop. However, there are chances that you might purchase a gaming laptop that has a defective fan or cooling system. This will prevent your laptop from cooling itself under a very heavy workload, which will result in permanent heat damage.


To prevent this from happening, get your gaming laptop fan checked by a computer technician if you notice that the cooling system is not doing its job.

Using Your Gaming Laptop on Your Bed or Other Soft Surfaces

gaming laptop on bed

Have you noticed that when you use your laptop on the bed, it overheats faster? 


Using your gaming laptop on your bed or any other soft surface will cause your gaming laptop to overheat since the laptop’s airflow will be blocked, which will increase the laptop’s temperature. It will also generate too much heat build-up and could cause damage to the internal components.


If you still want to use your laptop on the bed, to keep the components cool, try using a cooling pad to allow your laptop to have enough airflow and keep your laptop cool. Using a laptop cooler will also help improve air circulation.

Dust and Other Particles Clogged Up Your Gaming Laptop’s Vents

When your laptop’s fans are clogged with dust and other particles, the laptop fans will have a harder time doing their job to keep your laptop cool. Dust is more than just an annoyance around the house; it can clog your laptop’s fans and vents, keeping it from cooling down correctly. The excessive heat, in turn, can create disruption within the hardware inside, resulting in damage to your gaming laptop. Dust and other particle build-ups in your fan will also cause your laptop to blow out hot air. 

Overworking the CPU and GPU 

Overworking your CPU and GPU will cause a lot of stress to your cooling system because it’s trying its best to keep your laptop cool. But just like anything else, it has its limits.


There is a limit to how much workload you can put on your CPU and GPU before it gives up. You’ll notice that when you overwork your internal components, your gaming laptops become slower, start to lag, and will have a harder time to do even the simplest tasks. 


Too much stress on the processors will cause your gaming laptop to overheat, making it harder for the device to work properly. 

Fan Control Settings are Not Optimized

Most gaming laptops have fan controls that you can customize, such as the fan speed. This is a great feature to help your laptop’s cooling system. If you’re new to gaming laptops, you might not have known this. 


If your fans’ software configurations are not optimized, it might be limiting the speed at which the fans are spinning. To optimize the fans, make sure that you configure them to the perfect speed in the bios settings

Hot Gaming Environment

hot gaming room

Another reason why your gaming laptop could be overheating is because of its placement. Your room where you have built your gaming setup is hot. A hot environment for your gaming setup is a very bad idea because this could hinder your cooling system. This will make it a lot harder for your gaming laptop to stay cool. 


Although most PCs are fine in temperatures ranging from 50° to 95° Fahrenheit (10° to 35° Celsius). Anything hotter than this is a recipe for disaster and will cause permanent heat damage to your gaming laptop. 

Old Operating System

An older operating system means that your gaming laptop might also have an older cooling system. It also means that the operating system will have a harder time maintaining a cool temperature due to its age. 


It would be better to upgrade to a more modern operating system in order to keep your laptop cool.

Overclocked Your CPU and GPU

Overclocking is the process of causing your computer to run at a higher speed than it was designed to. 


Both your CPU and graphics card can be overclocked, allowing you to run advanced programs on an older PC. Although overclocking is generally safe for your gaming laptop, forcing it to run at a higher speed than what is intended might cause overheating and programs to crash. 


If you wish to overclock past a particular point in your CPU and/or GPU, you’ll need to increase the voltage. As a result, the circuit’s average lifespan will be slightly reduced, as greater voltages can be damaging to the circuit over time.

Signs That Your Gaming Laptop is Overheating

Now that you know why your gaming laptop is overheating, you should look at the signs to look out for, including: 

Suddenly Shutting Down on its Own

The first sign that your gaming laptop could be overheating is when it suddenly shuts down on its own. This indicates that the gaming laptop was put under too much stress. Shutting down on its own is a safety mechanism for your laptop to prevent any further damage. 


Although, shutting down on its own is also a common symptom of older gaming laptop units. To rule out laptop age when your laptop shuts down or restarts on its own, look for other signs, which we’ll talk more about below.

Constant Spinning and Loud Fans

Another sign to look out for is when your fans are extremely loud and are constantly spinning. Constant spinning and loud fans are a sign that the laptop is working extremely hard to maintain a cool temperature.  

Lags and Super Slow Performance

There are many reasons why your gaming laptop is lagging and is super slow in doing tasks. But one reason why it is happening is because of overheating. 


Lagging can be caused by your laptop’s age, too many unnecessary windows open, or overheating. If your laptop lags and you can’t complete simple tasks, your laptop might well be damaged and should be checked by a computer technician.


It is also possible that your CPU or GPU is already throttling. Thermal throttling occurs when a CPU or GPU “throttles,” or reduces its frequency and, hence, lowers the performance quality, after reaching a certain thermal limit or temperature.

The Exterior of Your gaming Laptop is Warm.

exterior of gaming laptop

If you’re a gamer, you might notice that sometimes (or all the time), the exterior of your gaming laptop is hot or warm to the touch. This can be a clear indication that your gaming laptop is overheating. 


You might be overworking your gaming laptop too much, causing so much heat buildup. The exterior of your gaming laptop can become even hotter if the laptop is not placed in a cool environment or if it’s placed on a soft surface (which can trap more heat). 


This could also lead to injuries such as burns, so you have to be careful if this ever happens. To help lessen the heat, you might want to use a laptop cooling pad to put under your laptop.

Error Pop-Up Message 

The most obvious sign that your gaming laptop is overheating is that you’ll get an error pop-up message telling you about the internal temperature of your laptop. 

How To Keep A Gaming Laptop Cool? 

So now that you know why your laptop is overheating and the signs to look out for, you might ask, “How can I keep it from overheating? Or maybe at least lessen the heat?” We’ve listed for you a few ways to help you to keep your laptop cool.

Modify Your In-Game Settings (Lower the graphics)

In-Game Settings

When you’re playing games that are demanding, your laptop is more likely to overheat. This is because the laptop is working harder in order to meet the games’ requirements. 


To keep your laptop cool while you’re gaming, it would be better to lower the games’ graphic settings. Since complex visuals require a lot more processing and rendering, playing games at their highest settings causes your laptop to overheat. This is particularly vital while playing graphically demanding games like Tomb Raider.


While lowering the game settings and restricting the frame rate reduces the graphical quality, it also reduces the demand on the CPU and GPU, resulting in reduced heat build-up.

Keep Your Laptop in a Cool Environment and Out of Direct Sunlight

The room where your gaming setup is placed may be excessively hot at times, especially during the summer. Warmer temperatures are more likely to cause your laptop to overheat.


To avoid this problem, place your gaming setup in a cool environment away from direct sunlight. It might also be a great idea to have AC inside your gaming room. Your laptop can draw cooler air and cool both internal and external components more easily in a cooler environment. If you want to learn more about how you can set up your gaming room, check out this article here.

Close All and Any Unnecessary Programs 

Since the temperature of the system is directly proportional to its workload, it is preferable to shut down programs that are running frequently rather than just placing them in the background. You should quit other programs that you no longer need before starting high-performance apps such as games.


Some programs start up automatically and execute checks and updates in the background even while you are not using them. This places an excessive strain on your laptop’s CPU, causing it to overheat.


You can examine these programs in the Windows Task Manager and close them to reduce CPU load by “Ending a Task” and disabling start-up apps you don’t need or use.

Use Your Gaming Laptop on a Hard Flat Surface or Stand

The air intake vents on most laptops are on the bottom. As a result, by setting your laptop on a flat, firm surface, you create some separation between your laptop and the surface it sits on. This makes it easier to pull in air and cool interior components.


A laptop cooling pad can help boost air circulation around your laptop even more. A laptop cooler pad that provides your laptop with more external fans. Place the pad beneath your laptop and plug it into the USB port to use it.


Some laptop cooling pads allow you to place your laptop on the bed if you don’t want to put it on a hard flat surface. A cooling pad ensures that the laptop’s vents are not obstructed by the soft surface.

Reapply a New Layer of Thermal Paste 

Thermal pastes have a tendency to dry up over time, causing them to lose their efficacy. As a result, you’ll need to reapply a fresh layer of thermal paste because the old one will cause overheating.


When the thermal paste dries up, reapplying it to help with heat distribution on your laptop will ensure that it stays cool while you play games. However, before applying the new thermal, make certain to remove the old one.


Thermal paste can alternatively be replaced with liquid metal for even better effects. If you choose liquid metal over the thermal paste, be sure it doesn’t come into contact with other motherboard components.

Clean the Internal Cooling System at least Twice a Year

Since air is constantly moving through a laptop, dust will eventually accumulate. While dust and other particles cannot be prevented from entering the vents, by cleaning your laptop at least twice a year, you remove dust and other particles that gather around fans and clog air intake vents.


This promotes airflow and reduces heat buildup in the interior of your laptop. Without needing to open the laptop, compressed air can be used to clean the vents.

Check if The Fan Speed is Set Properly in the Bios Settings

When CPU or GPU temperatures increase, fans should normally speed up. However, if this does not occur, your laptop may become extremely warm. Most of the time, this has to do with the BIOS settings, particularly if you have recently updated them.


The BIOS settings interface will differ between models. Once you’ve gotten into BIOS settings, you should be able to see the fan configuration settings under the hardware monitor settings.

Replacing Faulty Fans

Internal fans on most modern laptops (particularly those geared for gaming) help maintain all of the internal components cool. The temperature would increase significantly even if just one of those fans broke.


Using your ears is the best way to check them without having to open the laptop. Simply put the gaming device under extreme load, prompting all of the fans to spin at high speeds, and pay particular attention to the sound it makes. Look for a rattling sound or complete silence.


A faulty fan is difficult to replace. Rather than attempting to repair your laptop yourself, it is recommended to have it repaired by a qualified specialist.

Underclock Your Laptop (Only if you have overclocked it before)

As mentioned, overclocking is the process of causing your computer to run at a higher speed than it was designed to. 


So, to solve this problem, you need to underclock your laptop. Return your CPU and graphics card to their default settings. Ensure you back up all of your data to an external storage device so you don’t lose any valuable files.

What are The Risks of an Overheated Gaming Laptop?

Shorter Lifespan and Hardware Failure

An overheated laptop is more likely to face problems that can shorten the lifespan of the laptop and even cause hardware failure. You may also experience slow performance, lagging, programs suddenly freezing, and even sudden shutdowns or restarts. 


An extremely hot laptop can also cause injuries like burns due to the high temperatures. This can happen if you place your laptop on your lap for long periods while doing a heavy workload on the laptop.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is the Normal Range of Temperature for a Gaming Laptop?

Laptops are designed to operate in a safe temperature range of 50° to 95° Fahrenheit (10° – 35° Celsius).  While the recommended room temperature for gaming is between 50° and 95° Fahrenheit (10° and 35° Celsius).

Do All Laptops Overheat?

Every laptop can overheat, especially if they are under a heavy workload or if you’re running very demanding games on it. But despite the fact that every laptop can overheat, that shouldn’t always be the case because it’s not healthy for the laptop to generate too much heat.

Do Cooling Pads Help Reduce Overheating?

Yes, cooling pads can help reduce overheating on a laptop. However, the quality of every laptop cooler varies, as does its effectiveness in cooling. 

Should You Buy a Laptop Cooling Stand?

A laptop cooling stand can greatly assist in keeping your laptop cool. It also has ergonomic benefits because it raises the laptop display, which improves posture and reduces neck discomfort.

Can A Gaming Laptop Cool While Gaming?

Yes, you can keep your laptop cool while playing games. Cooling pads are an excellent and economical solution for keeping your laptop cool while gaming. Gaming laptops are extremely powerful, and some pads include external fans to keep your laptop cool.

Final Thoughts

Gaming laptops are known for overheating when put under heavy load. Although it is normal, when CPU and GPU temperatures exceed 80°C, there may be an underlying hardware or software issue. Some of our suggestions will help you cool down your laptop if it becomes too hot.


If none of these suggestions work, it’s probably best to have your laptop checked by a professional rather than mess with it yourself (unless you’re an expert in this area). It is generally preferable to get your costly gaming laptop fixed by a professional rather than attempt to repair it yourself. You might cause bigger problems if you do it yourself with little to no knowledge.


If you want to learn more about gamin, check us out here!


We hope this helps! Happy gaming!