Laptop is overheating.

QuestionZ2

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Oct 14, 2013
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I have a 3 years old Lenovo Z580 laptop which has recently started overheating to critical levels. Here's a summary from Speccy:
Operating System
Windows 8 Single Language 64-bit
CPU
Intel Core i5 3230M @ 2.60GHz 84 °C
Ivy Bridge 22nm Technology
RAM
4.00GB Single-Channel DDR3 @ 798MHz (11-11-11-28)
Motherboard
LENOVO Lenovo (CPU Socket - U3E1) 84 °C
Graphics
Generic PnP Monitor (1366x768@60Hz)
Intel HD Graphics 4000 (Lenovo)
1023MB NVIDIA GeForce GT 635M (Lenovo) 90 °C
ForceWare version: 361.75
SLI Disabled
Storage
465GB TOSHIBA MQ01ABD050 (SATA) 62 °C
Optical Drives
DTSOFT Virtual CdRom Device
DTSOFT Virtual CdRom Device
MATSHITA DVD-RAM UJ8D1
Audio
Realtek High Definition Audio

Only google chrome, speccy and steam were running when the laptop was at those temperatures. About 10% CPU was being used, 69% RAM and 5% disk so not much load at all.

The CPU and GPU go up to 105 °C whenever I play a game. I'll be building a PC soon to replace the laptop but want to try fixing the overheating issue. I thought it might be some fans not working well due to dust or something so I had it cleaned by the Lenovo service center guys but it's still overheating.
What could be causing this and how can I fix it?
 

atljsf

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Jun 17, 2015
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sounds like dust on the fan and heatsink, also the cpu thermal paste could be dried

is the fan spinning?
 

jaslion

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Dec 17, 2012
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I would recommend you replace the thermal paste and blow it out yourself with some compressed air (a can of it or just a compressor).
 

atljsf

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sounds like dust on the fan and heatsink, also the cpu thermal paste could be dried

is the fan spinning?
 

QuestionZ2

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Just opened up my laptop to check the given issues. The fan is spinning and blowing out a nice amount of hot air. I think the thermal paste is the thing that's become dysfunctional. I'd love to replace it but after watching the video tutorials on YouTube about the entire process, it's become apparent that my laptop is perhaps somewhat different. Most laptops showing how to replace the thermal paste have fairly accessible heat management system with the conduction tubes, fan, processor, and GPU being visible after removing only the back panel and requiring only a couple screws to be unscrewed before removing the entire array. My laptop is a Lenovo Ideapad Z580 and everything in it behind another plate and removing it seems like an entire laptop dismantle. I wish I was a laptop hardware expert to be able to go through with this confidently but unfortunately, I'm not. Can anyone guide me through the process and tell me whether I really need to dismantle my entire laptop just to get to the heat management assembly?

Here's a guy dismantling a Lenovo Ideapad Z580 to clean the fan.
 

QuestionZ2

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I just went and got the thermal paste replaced by the guy at the service center. When he opened the laptop, the previous thermal paste was still wet and he told me that it was functioning but I had it replaced anyway. But still, there are no improvements in the temperatures. The dude told me that it could an issue with the motherboard but the motherboard guy wasn't there so I came back home.
Can a laptop's motherboard really cause overheating while every single heat management component is working fine?
 

atljsf

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Jun 17, 2015
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yes, porblems with power management, speed of the cpu and problmes with the power source can cause such situaton

you could tyr to force the cpu to work on battery save mode, play with battery settings on windows but if the problem persists and as you report, all was find in the fan, heatsink and thermal paste, the origin of the problem is most likely the cpu or the mainboard itself

since it is a sort of undetermined situation you can try t play with bios related settings also, but if nothing helps, eventually you will have to get another laptop or mainboard for it
 

1shado1

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The video you posted shows EVERY step to disassembling the laptop. Not sure someone here could explain it better.

It is a very rare occasion, but heat pipes DO go bad (I've seen it twice). Just another possibility.
 

atljsf

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Jun 17, 2015
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but, find the pipes and heatsink, that is nor cheap or easy

sometimes a new laptop is cheaper, worth to consider too
 

1shado1

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$20.29 to the U.S., includes shipping. Plus the cost of replacement paste (a 30 dollar fix, as you said). But it still might not be the problem. Might be worth the 30 bucks to make sure, though. Less expensive than a new main board (try the cheap stuff first).

 

robert600

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Just a thought before you do anything too drastic.

You have given the output of speccy .... which is great but .... you haven't mentioned whether or not the air blowing out actually feels very hot or not. I ask this because speccy is useless on my laptop for temp readings. Right now for instance ... it says my cpu is 88 C .... Core Temp tells me 38 C ... judging by the heat of the exhaust .... CoreTemp is obviously correct. i'd download CoreTemp and have a look unless the exhaust feels very, very hot. I'm also suspicious of the 105 C reading you mention. The processor should shut down before going that high.
 

atljsf

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yes, i have a cpu that says 90°c atm but heatsink(touching it) and sensor on the mainboard says around 50°c

on a laptop without maintenance can reach those temps but a new model, sounds more a mainboard sensor problem more than anything
 

QuestionZ2

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The air blowing out from the side vent does feel hot. There's this feature in my laptop to make the fan run at insane speeds and when I do that, the amount of hot air becomes enough to burn my finger, got a blister once. Another observance that I had was that the underside of the laptop becomes "too-hot-to-touch". Like, I literally can't keep my skin in contact unless I have a clear intention of self-abuse xD. So, I'm pretty sure that the temperature shown by speccy is pretty much correct.
But the hot air blowing would also mean that heat is being conducted properly, right? The problem might now come down the point of production of heat, why's it getting so hot at all?

P.S. I'll post the details from the app that you mentioned as well, soon.
 

QuestionZ2

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About the cpu shutting down, I agree with that as well but for some reason, it has done so only once and that was yesterday.
 

QuestionZ2

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Core Temp 1.7, downloaded from their own website, gives the same temperature report as Speccy.
Here's a screenshot from Core Temp 1.7 while running Google Chrome, Speccy, Task Manager and Core Temp.
 

robert600

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That is crazy hot for sure!

In my mind ... Given that the fan can put out enough hot air to almost give you a blister ... I agree with you ... the issue isn't the cooling system, it's what is producing that much heat (under 15% load!)?

Did the guy who did the thermal paste happen to mention if the CPU was in a socket or was it soldered to the motherboard?
 

robert600

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Assuming it's socketed (and I think it would be ... I have no idea how the popular myth on this forum got started that most cpus are soldered on ???? ... not my experience at all), I see there is a used CPU on ebay for < $25. I would start there - i think you'd find tearing down the laptop to be not too bad a job.
 

1shado1

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Indeed, the CPU in question should be socketed. If it was an Intel low voltage "U" series CPU (which it's not) it would be soldered.

Many more discrete GPUs, rather than CPUs, appear to be soldered.

 
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