Games usually need high computer resources. Either Processors, RAMs and the most important thing the VGA. While on modern laptops, an office designed with $500 budget can also be a gaming ready. But of course it is not well designed for gaming. No special design for a cooling system which help to stabilize laptop on heavy performance. We heard some peoples complaining about having a common problem on it – the laptop overheat.
Speaks of overheat for the non gaming laptop, there are also many other problems that can be the source of overheat. On most cases this was caused by the internal heatsink failed to reduce heat due to dusts clogging the fan. Thus reducing the fan performance and also increasing noise. On extreme cases the dust completely stop the fan from spinning which make processors work on high temperature that causing overheat. The processor will then automatically shutdown the computer if the temperature reach the specific level.
Intel® Processors have built-in thermal protection. If the processor gets too hot, the built-in protection shuts down the computer. If your computer is not over-clocked and is running under the design specifications, the built-protection can help prevent damage to your system (intel.com).
On some rare cases, the plate called heat pipe between heatsink and fan can also be problem. This happened on my old Acer 4937G laptop where there is no heat coming out from the fan. The heat pipe supposed to transfer heat from processor into the main fan, but due to some reason the heat failed to transfer. Later I’ve found that the liquid inside the pipe was dried out (read here to see heat pipe mechanism).
We called it a software level solution. While this is only a temporary solution, we can use booster tools to reduce processors loads and used memory from RAM. The method done by closing/reducing some running applications so the computer can focus on game only. This not might be the best solution, but it is also useful if combined with undervolting method stated in this article.
Some tools we can use to reduce running application to boost gaming:
Another way is by tweaking processor voltage. An advanced tool work by reducing power supplied to processor or as we called undervolting the processor. This is an opposite method of game booster tools. While undervolting mean reducing processors performance, the game booster will preserve processor to focus on game. So like a win-win solution, for game and overheating problem. The tool used to undervolting called RightMark CPU Clock Utility (RMClock). Read this article for more info on using this tool.
But, both methods work only on some condition where there is no problem on heatsink, fan or heat pipe. If not, then hardware level solutions are required.
Now for the hardware level of solution. This is the most reliable solution for dust clogged on fan or heatsink – cleaning the dusts. On a low level dust problem, this can be done by using vacuum cleaner to blow out the dust.
But on high level dust problem, you need to disassemble the laptop case. But of course it is not that simple to breaking the laptop apart in order to clean the fans. If you unsure just take your laptop to the nearest service center, and let the expert handle this for you. Otherwise find the tutorials on Youtube, but do it carefully.
This is also the most recommended thing for non gaming laptop. Using cooler pad on a laptop can significantly reduce the heat. But remember, most cooling pad blowing air the bottom part of laptops, which also sometime sending dust into your laptop. You’ll notice the dirt under the case of your laptop if you regularly use this cooler pad.
So i personally recommend you to use the cooling pad that throw away the air out of your laptop. Beside helping reducing the heat, it also help to reduce dust accumulation on the bottom part of your laptop. The problem is, it’s a bit hard to find this kind of cooler pad. Alternatively you can tweak the pad by reversing the voltage or changing position of the fans.
If you’re a gamer, you seriously think about buying a gaming laptop. Most of this laptop designed well with high level hardware and better cooling system. But if you prefer to use non gaming laptop for game, you should think about the possibility of overheat problem while gaming. So as a prevention, you have to regularly clean the dust out of the fan (Use a vacuum cleaner on it), using cooling pad while gaming (since modern games mostly use high computer resources that will significantly increase the heat), also consider to use booster tool, that will help reduce processors load and preserve more RAM for the game. As an additional, if you have serious heating problem caused by processor load, use RMClock to undervolt the processor. It is proven to significantly reduce heat but will also reduce performance.