How to stop a Windows 10 laptop from overheating while gaming?

By Tobenna Nnabeze | September 23, 2019 |

greater than 7 minutes

Laptop overheating is an issue that should not be taken lightly. It causes your system not to perform optimally and could even lead to hardware damage.

If it happens every time you are playing a game, we’ll provide you with a few solutions.

How to Get Rid of Overheating in a Laptop when Playing Games

Users have reported experiencing the following problems:

  • Laptop overheats while playing games plugged in: If your laptop begins to overheat whenever your plug in your charger while playing a game, applying the fixes presented in this guide will help resolve the issue.
  • New PC overheats: If you just got a brand new laptop but it overheats when performing power-intensive tasks like playing a game, then the problem could be from the device’s power settings.
  • Laptop shuts down due to overheating: when your PC reaches a dangerously high temperature, the system shuts down automatically to prevent getting damaged.
  • PC overheats and crashes: Overclocking your device can lead to this issue.

How to Fix PC Overheating:

There are a number of things you can do:

  1. Restart your PC
  2. End tasks with high resource usage via Task Manager
  3. Run the Power Troubleshooter
  4. Undo overclocking
  5. Update your device drivers
  6. Modify your power settings
  7. Use the integrated graphics card
  8. Limit your FPS
  9. Replace your charger
  10. Plug in your charger
  11. Reduce the temperature with a cooling pad

Fix 1: Restart Your PC

Restarting your laptop is the first thing you should do in such a situation. It can help resolve some temporary conflicts that are causing the overheating. It is often effective and could be all that’s required.

Follow these steps:

  1. Turn off the PC and unplug the charger.
  2. Remove the battery (if it’s not built-in).
  3. Give the computer some time to cool down.
  4. Press and hold the power button for about 20 seconds.
  5. Put back the battery and connect the charger.
  6. Turn on the PC.

Try playing your game and see if the overheating will continue. If it does, then try the next fix.

Fix 2: End Tasks with High Resource Usage via Task Manager

Coupled with the resource-intensive nature of the game you are playing, certain programs that run in the background can hog the CPU and other system resources and thus add to the problem. As a result, your computer begins to overheat.

You can end these background tasks to reduce the system load and see if the overheating will abate:

  1. To invoke Task Manager, press Ctrl + Shift + Esc on your keyboard.

Alternatively, you can right-click on the Start icon and then select Task Manager from the list.

  1. Under the Processes tab, check the apps and processes that are using a considerable portion of your system resources (CPU, Memory, and so on). Right-click on each one and select ‘End task’ from the context menu.

Note: check for suspicious processes that have an abnormally high CPU usage. If there is any other process you’d like to end but you are not sure what it does, you can look it up online.

Also make sure that you do not end any of the essential Windows processes.

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Fix 3: Run the Power Troubleshooter

The built-in Windows utility checks for power supply issues and attempts to resolve them. This is especially useful if you’ve previously customized your power settings.

Follow these easy steps to run it:

  1. Go to the Start menu and click on the Settings icon.
  2. Click on Update and Security and then click Troubleshoot.
  3. On the right-hand side of the window, click on Power displayed under ‘Find and Fix other Problems.’
  4. Now click the Run the troubleshooter button.
  5. Wait for the scan to complete. It will fix any issues that are detected.

Fix 4: Undo Overclocking

If you’ve overclocked your CPU, graphics card, or any other component on your PC, it is most likely the cause of the overheating problem.

Since increasing the clock rate of your system components makes them perform more operations per second, it then leads to the production of additional heat.

Therefore, you have to change the clock settings back to their default values to stop the overheating.

But if the problem persists, you may want to consider setting the clock value below the default. Although under-clocking will cause reduced performance, it also lowers the energy consumed and, subsequently, the heat produced.

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Fix 5: Update Your Device Drivers

You need to make sure your drivers (especially the graphics card drivers) are compatible and up to date.

To perform a manual update, here’s what you have to do:

  1. Invoke the WinX menu by pressing the Windows logo key + X combination on your keyboard.
  2. Locate Device Manager in the list and click on it.
  3. In the window that opens, note the devices that have a yellow triangle with an exclamation mark at the center. The sign means there’s a problem with the driver.
  4. Right-click on each one and select ‘Update driver software…’ from the context menu and then select the option that says ‘Search automatically for updated driver software.’

Alternatively, you can visit the official website of your PC manufacturer and search for the latest version of the drivers. Make sure they match the specifications of your system before you begin the download and installation.

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Since it reads your system specifications, you won’t have to worry about getting the wrong drivers. It offers the perfect solution for keeping your drivers updated at all times and helps avoid running into driver-related issues on your PC.

Fix 6: Modify Your Power Settings

Your current power settings could be the reason why your laptop overheats when you are playing a game. You can try modifying them and see if that helps. Your CPU utilization changes afterwards, and that should help stop the overheating.

Here’s what you have to do:

  1. Go to the Start menu.
  2. Type ‘power’ in the search bar and then click on ‘Power & sleep settings’ from the search results.
  3. Click on Additional Power settings in the right-pane of the window, under ‘Related settings.’
  4. In the Power Options window that opens, click Change plan settings displayed just beside your preferred power plan.
  5. Now, click the Change advanced power settings option.
  6. Go to the Processor power management section and set a lower value for ‘Maximum processor state’ (for instance, you can set it to 95 if it’s 100) and ‘Minimum processor state’ (some users suggest that setting the value to 5 did the trick for them).

Note: Take note of the current values so that you can change them back if you need to.

  1. Click Apply > OK to save the changes.

Fix 7: Use the Integrated Graphics Card

Gaming laptops have a dedicated graphics card in addition to the integrated graphics card.

The dedicated graphics card is used when performing hardware-intensive tasks so as to ensure efficiency and balanced performance. However, it uses more power and thus produces more heat. When the cooling system is not sufficient or the room is not well ventilated, your PC begins to overheat while playing games.

As a workaround, consider using the integrated GPU instead. Although the performance won’t be as good as with the dedicated GPU (meaning that you might not get the best gaming experience), it doesn’t use as much power and subsequently produces less heat.

You can set the integrated GPU as the default processor through the control panel of your dedicated graphics software (such as Nvidia or AMD).

However, if you don’t wish to go along with this workaround, consider getting an external cooler (such as a cooling pad) and also use your laptop in an air-conditioned or a well-ventilated room.

Fix 8: Limit Your FPS

Having more frames per second (FPS) means a more enjoyable gaming experience. However, it could also be the reason why your laptop is overheating as the game tasks your hardware resources.

Try setting your FPS to a lower value. For instance, if it’s 100, you can set it to 60. Doing so will reduce the strain on your graphics card and the amount of heat produced.

Fix 9: Replace Your Charger

If your laptop begins to overheat when you plug in the charger while playing games, it could be that the charger is faulty. To check if this is the case, try using a different one and see if the issue will continue.

Also, make sure that the charger you are using is the right one for your laptop. If it doesn’t have the correct specs (wattage, output voltage and so on), not only will it cause overheating, but it can also damage your laptop.

Fix 10: Plug In Your Charger

Plugging in your charger will ensure your PC receives the power it needs to support the game you are playing. Overheating issues can occur when there’s not enough power to compensate for hardware-intensive games.

Fix 11: Check Your Laptop Condition

There are a number of things you should look into:

  • While playing games (or any other time at all, as long as your computer is turned on and running), ensure that the room is well ventilated. It’s preferable to play your games in an air-conditioned room. This will keep your PC from heating up.
  • Make sure that the laptop is kept on a clean, flat surface. If you’ve placed it on a soft surface like your bed, sofa, or pillow, the airflow gets hindered and the temperature rises due to inadequate cooling. The fans also collect dust and dirt and aggravate the heating problem.
  • Your laptop is bound to collect dust overtime. Therefore, if you notice that it now overheats too often, you need to clean out the dust that has accumulated in the fans and vents. You may need to visit the official repair center to get it done by an expert and also avoid voiding your warranty.

Fix 12: Reduce the Temperature with a Cooling Pad

If your laptop continues to overheat after you’ve tried all the above solutions, then you should definitely consider purchasing a cooling pad. The device will help keep the temperature down.

Overheating issues are a source of great concern for many PC users. But by the time you’ve tried the solutions presented here, you’ll be able to enjoy your games without your laptop getting toasty.

Please feel free to leave a comment in the section below if you have any questions, remarks, or further suggestions.

We’ll love to hear from you.

Fed up with your slow PC? Tired of waiting for Windows to start up? Take a look at the most common reasons behind poor performance and the best ways to deal with them here.
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