Exploding batteries, singed eyebrows, and burnt crotches: all from overheating laptops. Don’t toss that hot potato. Make its cooling system good as new
Identifying an overheating laptop isn’t particularly difficult. If you find your laptop randomly turning off (especially during periods of demanding use) and various parts feel hot to the touch, as-in too hot to comfortably hold your finger against, it’s probably overheating. If your laptop is still covered under warrantee, this is a problem for the manufacturer to take care of; however, through normal use, it isn’t unusual for laptops to become gunked up with dust and lint, generally around the time that the warranty expires.
An overheating laptop can also be dangerous. Those Li-Ion batteries don’t respond well to hot environments, and using your laptop on your lap can even result in burns. If parts of your laptop are hot enough that it’s painful to hold your hand against it, you need to do something about it.
Rather than buying a replacement laptop, there are a few simple steps you can take in order to give it a second wind. The following guide will walk you through two methods for cleaning your laptop’s cooling system. One method is extremely simple and non-invasive, and the other is a complete cleaning, best suited for those with some computer hardware experience.