Why Do Gaming Laptops Get So Hot? The Answer AND Possible Solutions

Gaming laptops are notorious for building up a ton of heat. Gamers from all walks of life have been asking about this since the dawn of PC gaming-on-the-go, but why do gaming laptops get so hot? What causes all that heat? Today, we’re going to look at the causes of this problematic conundrum and give a few suggestions on how to dispel all that heat.

Why Do Gaming Laptops Get So Hot?

Computers, or electronics in general, generate heat, period. Laptops just happen to create a lot more heat. Why is that? Well, there are a few different reasons for this:

  • PC components are stuffed into a small space
  • Fans on gaming laptops aren’t the best
  • Heat exhaustion on a laptop can be minimal at best
  • Gaming laptops are often on a flat surface or a surface that insulates heat
Why Do Gaming Laptops Get So Hot?

Components in a Small Space

This is one of the most basic reasons for heat build-up within a gaming laptop. You have to think about the actual construction of the device as compared to a desktop gaming PC.

With a desktop build – in most cases, anyway – there’s a decent amount of room within the case that give the core components such as the graphics card, CPU, and hard drive (or SSD) to breathe, so to speak. Air flow is better. The fans are generally larger and more powerful. Exhaust options for heat are more numerous and substantial. When it comes to cooling down, desktops have a lot of advantages over gaming laptops.

Fans Aren’t Powerful Enough

Another reason why gaming laptops get so hot is because the fans both aren’t as powerful as their desktop cousins and, a lot of the time, they don’t have the open-air environment they need to do their job efficiently.

There are things you can do to help with this issue. One of the best options is to get a powerful laptop cooling pad to maximize airflow. Another great thing to do is to prop your laptop up with a stand that has an open or mesh-style bottom to allow for air to circulate better, thus improving overall cooling.

Gaming Laptops Don’t Dispel Heat Well

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The biggest issue that plagues a gaming laptop – or any laptop for that matter – is that they lack the ability to remove internal heat as well as a desktop PC. All of the core components are cramped together in a small area, the built-in fans on most gaming laptops aren’t the best, ventilation is minimal at best on these laptops, and they just struggle more than a desktop to keep core temperatures down.

In order to keep your laptop from consistently overheating while gaming you’re going to want to make sure you keep your vents clean and obstruction-free. Adding a cooling pad and a stand that allows for better airflow, as mentioned above, are also wise things to do. But one of the biggest things is making sure your gaming laptop has the ventilation it needs to regulate its temperature as much as possible using its stock vents and internal fans.

Keeping the Laptop on a Flat Surface or Heat-Trapping Spot

One of the absolute worst things you can do for a gaming laptop – which many of us are guilty of – is keeping it in your lap or sitting on a bed while gaming. Why? Because your body, clothes, and especially your bed generate or retain heat. Adding insulation to existing heat from your laptop plus reducing airflow significantly diminishes your laptop’s ability to cool itself.

Keep it up long enough and you can overheat and burn out your laptop,

Flat surfaces (such as a desk) are generally recommended, but they’re still not the most ideal. As mentioned above, the best thing to do is get yourself a stand with an open or ventilated surface on the bottom (where the laptop sits) to optimize cooling.

So, Why Do Gaming Laptops Get So Hot? A Summary..

So, to summarize – gaming laptops tend to overheat due to a few different reasons including the basic configuration of a laptop, poor ventilation, fans that struggle to keep up with dispelling heat, user-end mistakes that cause heat to become trapped within the device, and, of course your laptop generating heat while gaming (a relatively resource-intense task).

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