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Overheating Computers

All computers and laptops produce heat, but what happens if that heat builds up? Why should you be aware of overheating?

Overheating – some background information

All electronic devices produce heat, some equipment like your computer or laptop produce enough heat to require cooling. This cooling usually takes the form of a heatsink (normally copper or aluminium based, with fins or channels to allow air to pass through) and a fan. If this cooling system is not working properly or becomes blocked, it can lead to overheating, which can have a major impact on the performance and life span of your PC or laptop.

Why should I care about overheating?

If your heatsink or fan becomes clogged with dust, your computer will start to overheat.  This can lead to poor performance and a reduced life span of your equipment.  It is particularly important in laptops due to their compact nature and is one of the top reasons your laptop will fail completely, costing you money to replace it. However, it is completely preventable with servicing.

If we compare this to your car for example, you service your car every year, because you know it could fail if you don’t, leaving you with expensive repair bills.  The car filters and vents become clogged over time and need changing or cleaning. It’s exactly the same with your computer, yet so many people do nothing until it’s too late.

I can’t stress enough how important regular servicing is to the health of your computer or Laptop and how it can save you money in the long run.

What are the warning signs of overheating?

  • You will notice that the fan/s will be running all the time, and probably more loudly than they used to.

  • You will be experiencing poor performance. As your computer struggles to cope with the heat it will slow itself down to try and compensate.

  • In the worst cases your computer will turn itself off with no warning (as if you had removed the plug).

  • On a laptop you will notice the base of the laptop getting very hot, despite the fan being on most of the time you cannot feel any hot air coming out of its vent.

If you notice any of these warning signs, please do not ignore them. If serviced quickly enough your computer or laptop will be absolutely fine, however if left unchecked it can and often does lead to the death of the machine.

PC Guy recommends a routine service at least once a year. If it has been longer than this since your computer last had a service then it’s very possible your machine could already be overheating.

This is what could be happening to the fans and vents within your laptop or desktop if it hasn't been serviced recently.

The cost of a service buys you peace of mind and could save you the cost and hassle of buying a new computer. If you have any concerns, or would like to arrange a service please contact PC Guy, I will be glad to help and I cover Ellesmere Port, Chester and Wirral areas.