Desktop Processors
What Can I Do if My Processor is Overheating?

There are two things to consider: Has this system just been built, or it has been built and running fine for some time?

If the system has just been built

  • Check for latest BIOS and update it if needed.
  • Check the Fan/Heatsink(FHS) that is has been properly installed and is recommended to be used with the processor you are using.
    • Is there Thermal Interface Material (TIM) on the bottom of the heatsink?
    • Are the push pins in the correct position and is the Heatsink securely attached to the socket/motherboard?
  • Are any cables blocking the airflow?
  • Are you using a Thermal Advantage Chassis(TAC)?
  • Are you using a third party software to measure the temperature or the BIOS readings? (Some third party software may need to be updated to work with the latest processors. Check with the vendor to see if it has been validated to work on your processor.)
If the system has been built and running fine for some time

  • How can you tell it is overheating?
    • From the BIOS?
    • Is the fan spinning faster?
    • Does the system shut down?
    • Reports from third party software?
  • Check the Fan/Heatsink(FHS) for any damage. Is the fan still operational?
  • Has the FHS come loose from the socket/motherboard? Check the push pins for damage and reset them to original position and reinstall.
  • Are the fins on the heatsink dirty? If so, remove FHS, clean out fins, re-apply TIM, and reinstall.
  • Are there any hard drive cables that may have come loose and are blocking the air flow? If so fix cables so they are neat and do not obstruct air flow.

For more detailed and technical information on this topic, see the Select here for Thermal Management for the Boxed Intel® Core™2 Extreme processor, Boxed Intel® Core™2 Quad processor and the Boxed Intel® Core™2 Duo processor document.

Operating System:

OS Independent

This applies to:

Intel® Celeron® Desktop Processor
Intel® Core™ i7 Desktop Processor
Intel® Core™ i7 Processor Extreme Edition
Intel® Core™2 Duo Desktop Processor
Intel® Core™2 Extreme Processor
Intel® Core™2 Quad Processor
Intel® Pentium® 4 Processor Extreme Edition
Intel® Pentium® 4 Processors
Intel® Pentium® D Processor
Intel® Pentium® Processor Extreme Edition
Intel® Pentium® Processor for Desktop

Solution ID: CS-029300
Last Modified: 14-Oct-2014
Date Created: 19-May-2008
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