There are two groups of users who loves to monitor CPU temperature. These are Overclockers and those who have powerful computers. Because if ignored to check CPU temp on their system then high temp can damage internal PC hardware.
Since heavy PC software and games came into market, the problem of computer temperature especially CPU temp has been increasing. Most of the time, high CPU temperature effect system performance and lower hardware lifespan. But how can one monitor CPU temperature and see if it’s ideal temperature of CPU or not?
In this article you will learn how PC temperature increases and How to monitor CPU temperature with best CPU temperature monitor for Windows PC. Lastly few tips are also explained to lower CPU temperature and keep it cool.
Note: We didn’t ignore Laptop users, they can also learn how to check laptop CPU temperature with laptop temp monitors after reading this guide.
How to Check CPU Temperature in Windows
As for Windows, these operating systems doesn’t offer any solution to monitor CPU temperature. Microsoft didn’t include any built in computer temperature monitor in Windows 10/8/7. That’s why it’s quite difficult to check CPU temperature in these operating systems.
Although, you can access system BIOS to see CPU temp. The BIOS does provides useful information including CPU temperature but that involves a lot of hassle. Besides, you must have sufficient knowledge before you tweak system BIOS settings.
To ease this problem, there exists plenty PC temp monitoring program which help you monitor CPU temperature. These CPU temperature monitor are third party software. To monitor CPU temperature you must download one or two PC temp monitor. These temps monitor are free doesn’t cost you single penny.
You can check CPU temp on Windows 10, Windows 8, 7, Vista, XP and 2000 with these CPU temperature monitoring tools.
You can download HWMonitor to check CPU temperature. CPUID HWMonitor provide deeper insight on your PC. It’s the best choice for those who need best CPU temp monitor. This CPU heat monitor access system sensors and then displays a wide variety of information.
Not only it monitors CPU temperature but it also shows system voltages, fan speeds, and CPU power consumption. You can download this CPU monitoring software in two versions e.g. HWMonitor portable and HWMonitor pro. With this PC temp monitor you can instantly check CPU temperature on Windows 7, 10 Vista & XP.
On the other hand, if you want a PC temperature monitor with more “advanced” tool, then download HWiNFO. This computer temperature monitor provides comprehensive detail about your PC hardware. You can download this PC temp monitor in portable and setup versions.
For those who think that the Windows Task Manager is too basic for them. And they want computer temperature monitor which can also control CPU fan speed on Windows. They should download speedfan which is free fan speed controller software.
It’s one of the best computer temperature monitor that read CPU temperature via S.M.A.R.T sensors placed on motherboard and hard disk. This fan control software lets you manually control and monitor CPU fan speed. You can increase computer’s fan speed on Windows 10 & 7. SpeedFan can also monitor PC voltage and saves your precious hardware from being frying.
If SpeedFan doesn’t show CPU temperature or you are not satisfied with it. Then download core temp monitor. AlCPU Core Temp is simple and easy to use PC temp monitor. It’s the best CPU temperature software solely designed to monitor CPU temperature on windows 7/10.
Core temp displays the current, minimum and maximum CPU temperature of each individual core. Here it is important to tell you that PC core temperature is more accurate than CPU temperature. Core temp monitor readings are more accurate. This computer heat monitor also includes an “always on top” mode which can display the current CPU temperature from your system tray. So far it’s the most accurate CPU temp monitor 2019.
Speccy, CPU-Z, NZXT’s Cam and Open Hardware Monitor are other well-regarded best software to check CPU temperature on windows 10. With these PC temperature monitor you can easily monitor computer temperature and track system information.
But I personally recommend you to download HWMonitor or Core Temp. These free CPU heat monitor are comprehensive tool, have simple visual interface, shows all relevant info about computer hardware.
How To Monitor GPU Temperature
If you have GPU and you need free program to check GPU temperature on Windows 10/7. Then CPUID CPU-Z, NZXT’s Cam and MSI Afterburner are the best GPU temp monitor.
These tools lets you monitor GPU temp show what’s current GPU temperature of Graphics cards. These temp monitor for GPU displays live GPU temp readings, so that you can maintain normal GPU temperature while gaming.
How Hot Is Too Hot For PC?
If you want to know how hot should my CPU be? Or how hot is too hot for CPU? Then remember that all computers generate heat while doing normal number crunching. So, don’t get confused if any computer hardware exudes nominal heat.
Each hardware component of PC has different temperature range. For example: acceptable CPU temp range of Intel’s i7 processors is 85°C, while hard drives safe operating temperature range is 70°C.
To know if your CPU is too hot first check if it’s the computer fan noise which is causing high CPU temperature problem. But if the computer fans are working constantly with noisy speed, it might be a sign of CPU overheating. Because when PC overheats you will notice that your PC performance is slower than usual.
In case you are laptop users then regularly check laptop temperature because laptop overheating is more dangerous as compare to desktop PC. The reason why laptop temp get high so fast is narrow spacing and compact design. Then most laptop have their intake fins on bottom side this also adds up as another factor of high CPU temp.
The above mentioned tools are also the best laptop temperature monitors software. Use any one of these laptop monitors to keep an close eye on CPU temperature of laptop.
What is The Normal CPU Temperature While Gaming?
The maximum CPU temperature differs from model to model. Usually the “Tj. Max.” value is used in all CPU temperature monitors to explain maximum CPU temperature range.
This “Tj. Max” stands for the temperature junction, or the highest operating computer hardware temperature. If you don’t see this information, about your CPU, than search CPU World website to check your CPU’s model number and check CPU temperature.
Many users asks about normal CPU temperature, ideal CPU temperature, good CPU temperature or best CPU temperature. These terms expresses the same meaning. So, don’t be confused.
Usually, the Ideal temperature of CPU for computer and laptop to operate at it’s maximum capacity is room temperature which is 23°C/73°F. This range can also be termed as idle CPU temperature.
Again ambient temperature is considered normal CPU temperature. But if it doesn’t explain much, than consider 60 degrees Celsius to be average CPU temperature. My advice is that you should always aim for 45-50 degrees Celsius because it’s a safe CPU temperature.
For Playing games best CPU temperature should be around 70°C even around 80°C it’s still normal CPU temperature, but from that point it must not exceed.
Intel and AMD CPU’s in all latest laptop, and desktop have the ability to work at a maximum temperature of 212° Fahrenheit or 100° Celsius.
But you should always maintain normal CPU temperature while gaming. To keep an eye on your best CPU temperature you must download CPU temperature monitoring software.
What is The Best CPU Temperature Range?
This general rule is applicable on all types of CPU’s under load. Don’t try to overlook this important CPU temperature ranges or else it will cost you heavily. Again these below CPU temp ranges should not be considered hard and fast rule.
- Below 60° C: Everything is great.
- Between 60° C to 70° C: Still running fine, but it’s getting a bit hotter. I recommend that you should cleaning the dust out of your PC.
- Between 70° C to 80° C: It’s a really serious situation because it’s getting way more hotter than you want to run. Now check and make sure that your fans are working and there aren’t dust bunnies struck in system’s airflow.
- Between 80° C to 90° C: Now we’re entering in a red zone. It’s too hot for long-term comfort. Check your hardware for broken fans, dislocated heat sink. Dial back your settings if you’re overclocking especially the voltage if you’ve altered it.
- Over 90° C: Danger, Mayday Mayday!
How To Lower Your CPU Temperature To Prevent Overheating
Computer consists of a lot of parts, almost all of which generates heat. Some parts, like the CPU and GPU, can get so hot you could cook an egg on them.
In a properly administered desktop or laptop computer heat is moved out of the computer’s case through several fans. If computer doesn’t remove hot air fast enough, the computer temperature can get hot enough to inflict serious damage to PC. Needless to say, it’s a top priority to keep computer temperature normal.
Below are free DIY computer cooling solutions that anyone can do. Many are easy and doesn’t involve expertise. So there’s really no excuse to let your CPU temperature overheat and cause damage.
Remove the Computer’s Cover
It is one of the simplest method to avoid computer temperature in desktops. Try to run your computer with the case open and it will keep cool. Because there would be more inflow of fresh air which will help keep the computer cooler.
The side effect of this method is that, when the case is open, dust and debris clog the cooling fans faster. This causes fans to slow down due to dirt build up. But if you place you PC in clean environment you can prevent dust as well.
Regularly Clean Your Computer
The second step to prevent and fix computer overheating is to make sure that PC is clean inside. Because dust is an insulator which accumulates in desktop PC cases and laptop and over time it block fan and air flow.
This dust can cause poor ventilation problems and prevent PC from cooling itself properly. In laptops, it is very difficult to clean dust because of narrow space. Turn off computer, open up the case and use a can of compressed air, a microfiber cloth, 99% isopropyl alcohol to clean it.
Maintain Proper Ventilation for Airflow
Another method which can help maintain ideal CPU temperature is by providing proper airflow. Maintaining proper ventilation isn’t just about keeping your computer clean or adding an additional computer fan. Rather it’s maintaining a middle ground between positive and negative pressure. Positive airflow which is cool air rush into the system and Negative airflow which is hot rush outward. There must be a balance between them.
In case of desktop PC, it should be at least 2-3 inches away from wall especially from behind. Because most of the hot air flows out from the back end. In case of a laptop, be careful not to block its air vents. So always put laptop on a plain hard surface when it’s doing something demanding.
Check PC Fans and If Needed Set Higher Fan Speed
If the problem of overheating does not go away. Then first make sure that all the fans are running and are not unplugged. And if fans are running very slow then a fan speed controller software like SpeedFan can solve this problem.
Because this PC temp monitor can manually control fan speed. So keep every fan’s speed around 50% to attain safe CPU temperature.
MSI Afterburner also provide same options to control fan speeds while playing games or committing intensive work on PC. For mac users i would suggest Macs fan control. This software help it’s users to control and monitor Mac fan speed.
If you don’t know what overclocking is? Then don’t worried because you are not doing it. The rest of the users must knows that Overclocking is to operate your CPU at a higher clock speed than intended by its manufacturers.
This process does give you more efficient performance but it is also the main cause of high CPU temperature. If you are overclocking your PC than reconfigure your hardware to factory default settings.
Improve Cable Management in Computer Case
If your PCs cables are strewn around, you cannot maintain proper airflow inside the PC case. This may also contribute to overheating issue and dust collecting problems. This means your PC cannot intake cool air and exhaust hot air efficiently.
To overcome this issue, zip-tie, move, and configure your cables to create more free space inside your PC.
Apply Thermal Paste
A quality thermal paste is crucial to maintain normal CPU temperature. Thermal paste is mainly used to lower CPU temperature and GPU temperature.
It is applied between the space of heat-sink and the component. The heat-sink distributes this heat to metal sheets which then cooled off by fans.
Better the quality of thermal paste, more heat will transfer between component and heat sink. Artic Silver 5 is one of the best thermal paste which is available easily. There are different methods to apply thermal paste on CPU and GPU, but he pea dot method is the best to apply thermal grease.
Warning: Reapplying thermal paste on CPU or GPU will void the warranty because you have to open the unit.
Install Water Cooling system and Double Check It
In high performing rigs, buildup heat can become serious problem that even the most efficient fan can’t cool the PC. In these cases installing water cooling system is a right option.
These coolers don’t require larger space around the CPU. In these liquid cooling system water circulate through pipes inside system which absorbs heat inside PC then a radiator cools this water.
Do You Want a CPU Cooler For PC?
If the overheating problem does not go away or if you want to build a gaming computer or if you want to overclock your PC to get higher performance.
Then you may want more than stock cooling for your CPU. It is quite time to choose the best CPU cooler when there are tons of aftermarket CPU cooler.
Here are 5 best CPU cooler in no particular order which can lower CPU temperature and prevent overheating problem. So it’s up to you to choose according to your likening.
Lower in price but excellent in performance Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO is affordable CPU cooler. The Hyper 212 EVO Cooler Master is a great PC hardware as they always manufacture best CPU cooling products.
The copper heat pipes along with aluminum dissipation fins and a huge fan is a solid solution to control Intel & AMD CPU temperature.
If your budget allows then Noctua NH-D15 is a fantastic beast on its performance side. Low noise and low temperature is the quality of Noctua’s fan. But due it’s oversize it might block memory access or not even fit in smaller cases.
The Closed-loop liquid cooling solutions provide far cooler PC temperatures than air coolers. Corsair Hydro Series H110 all in one CPU liquid cooler. It’s liquid cooling solution is very effective to dissipate impressive heat from processor. The 140 and 280 mm liquid cooling kits are getting more popular among users. Corsair CPU cooler produces less noise yet more performance.
Dark Rock Pro 3 Be Quiet is a German manufacturer of PC cooling gadgets. Be Quiet’s Dark Rock Pro 3 is definitely the most enthusiast class air-cooling solution for overheated PC. This big giant PC cooler will cost you 89.99 $ with three-year warranty which is a fair deal.
It is surprising fact that NZXT Kraken X62 CPU cooler is as impressive as their hardware. NZXT also allows you to monitor CPU temp with their CAM temp monitor software. This CPU cooler is compatible with NZXT CAM software, which allows users to program, customize and monitor liquid cooling system. NZXT Kraken X62 comes with a heavy price of $159.99 with 6 years’ warranty which I think is a fair bargain.
What we have tried to explain through this CPU temp guide is:
Computer overheating is a serious problem which can effects the computer performance. For a computer to operate at it best, average CPU temps are between 45 C to 50 C. It’s the best CPU temps range for all computers.
You can also check the PC temperature in windows by using free CPU temperature monitoring programs. For that free software like speed fan, Core Temp, CPU-Z, Speccy, HWMonitor are very effective in this regard. They are considered reliable CPU temperature monitor windows 10.
Even without having any monitoring app you can judge if your PC is showing symptoms of overheating. But in extreme situation after applying preventive methods, if the problem of CPU temp does not go away. Then their is a need to install additional aftermarket CPU cooler in your PC. There we have mentioned the best air and liquid cooling solutions. Choose the best cooling system to your liking.