Question Laptop's GPU overheating and causing severe throttling when under load

Feb 3, 2022
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Hi, as the tittle suggests I've been having problems with my laptop's GPU overheating and throttling when playing games. however, This is not a recent problem it's something that's been going on for about a year and a half and have not been able to fix yet, even after looking at countless posts on different websites and trying everything I could to fix the issue.

So I've finally decided to post this on a forum is because I'm really tired of not being able to play pretty much any game without it severely lagging and/or my laptop shutting down due to the high temperatures.
Anyways, here's all the information i have to offer.


Laptop specs:
  • Model: Acer Nitro 5 AN515-42 R5ED
  • CPU: Ryzen 5 2500U
  • GPU: Radeon RX560X
  • OS: Windows 10 Home (this is the OS that came with the laptop)
Things I've tried:
  • Cleaning fans and removing any dust from the heatsink fins.
  • Cleaning CPU and GPU and reapplying thermal paste.
  • Replaced every thermal pad.
  • Updated GPU drivers to the latest stable ones (Radeon Software V22.1.2)
  • Installed GPU Drivers provided on the Acer support center (Older Radeon Software Version 17.4).
  • Updated every other driver to its latest stable versions
  • Wiped all data from both driver connected to my laptop and reinstalled Windows 10
Elaborating further on the issue:
For the purpose of explaining the problem I will focus on 2 games in specific (temperature measured on degrees Celsius):
  • Rocket League on 1920x1080 Resolution and every setting on LOW except for Texture Quality which was set on the highest setting.
    • Before: I was averaging 90FPS and temps would sit around 50 - 65 degrees rarely ever going over that value.
    • After: FPS would heavily fluctuate anywhere from 1 to 40FPS and temps would reach 80 - 90+ degrees.
      • Laptop would occasionally shut down after going past 90 degrees.
  • CS:GO on 1920x1080 Resolution with every setting on LOW.
  • Before: I was averaging 120FPS and temperatures would sit around 60-70 degrees, rarely ever going over that value.
  • After: FPS would heavily fluctuate anywhere from 1 to 80FPS and temps would also reach 80 - 90+ degrees.
    • Laptop would shut down more often after going past 90 degrees.
Additional Observations:
  • Temperatures always are always going over 80 degrees under any load above 10%.
    • Temperature is not consistent , after observing temperatures using "HWMonitor" and Acer's own monitoring software "Acer NitroSense" i found that temperatures constantly fluctuate between 80 -90+ degrees and 60 - 70 degrees, all within a matter seconds.
  • On Windows advanced power settings, by turning the AMD powerplay setting from "Maximize Performance" to "Optimize Battery" (only these two options are available), performance would drastically drop down but temperatures would no longer be an issue, hence no throttling and no Shut Downs due to high temperatures.
  • CPU performs perfectly fine, it's only a GPU issue.
  • NO, THE GAMES ARE NOT BEING EXECUTED ON THE INTEGRATED GPU.
If you need any other info feel free to ask me anything and I'll try my best to answer it ASAP.
Thanks in advance for the help and I'll appreciate any information I can get in order to fix this issue.


(Sorry if my English is bad, it's not my first language and I'm still learning).
 
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I wonder if you have a virus that is using your GPU for crypto mining. This is one reason for high GPU usage, but there could be other reasons. Virus checkers can't always find this. I would suggest the following:
  • In an admin command window execute sfc /scannow to verify system files are OK.
  • Run a couple of good virus scanners in offline mode. You download these onto a bootable USB stick and boot from the stick.
  • Do a clean reinstall of Windows where you delete everythig. This is a painful process as al your programs and data will be erased meaning you will have to reinstall everything again.
BTW, are you running any pirated games of software? This is a great way for malware to appear on your machine that is not always detectable by antivirus software.
 
Feb 3, 2022
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I wonder if you have a virus that is using your GPU for crypto mining. This is one reason for high GPU usage, but there could be other reasons. Virus checkers can't always find this. I would suggest the following:
  • In an admin command window execute sfc /scannow to verify system files are OK.
  • Run a couple of good virus scanners in offline mode. You download these onto a bootable USB stick and boot from the stick.
  • Do a clean reinstall of Windows where you delete everythig. This is a painful process as al your programs and data will be erased meaning you will have to reinstall everything again.
BTW, are you running any pirated games of software? This is a great way for malware to appear on your machine that is not always detectable by antivirus software.
This is highly unlikely. as I already mentioned I've tried wiping all data from all the drives connected to my laptop and reinstalled Windows 10, and when I say all data I mean ALL OF IT, not a single byte of info left in them.

As for the crypto mining this is also unlikely, GPU usage is High only when using Highest AMD powerplay setting, if I turn it to the lowest setting GPU usage goes down by a lot and so do the temperatures.
No pirated games or pirated software.

It's also worth mentioning that when I wiped all data and reinstalled windows I tried playing games before and after installing any other software and drivers and the results we're the exact same, ruling out any possible malware executed from storage.
Now, unless malware can be stored on any other hardware that has memory (I have zero knowledge on this), like RAM or GPU memory, I don't think virus/malware is an issue.

I'm willing to try an offline virus scanner although I'm not really sure It'll really provide any results given all the solutions I've tried. So would it really be worth trying?

Edit: just executed admin command and it found nothing unusual
 
Sorry--I missed seeing the reinstall. There are viruses that hide in the BIOS but they are rare and I have no idea how you would detect them. I very much doubt this is an issue. About all that is left to consider is a cooling issue. Is it possible the fan(s) are not running at speed? There are fan monitoring programs that can tell you the fan speed, but I don't know what the expected speed should be. Also, perhaps the cooling heatpipe has failed somehow. Never heard of that happening though. I'm out of ideas. Have you also asked this question on an Acer forum?
 
Feb 3, 2022
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Sorry--I missed seeing the reinstall. There are viruses that hide in the BIOS but they are rare and I have no idea how you would detect them. I very much doubt this is an issue. About all that is left to consider is a cooling issue. Is it possible the fan(s) are not running at speed? There are fan monitoring programs that can tell you the fan speed, but I don't know what the expected speed should be. Also, perhaps the cooling heatpipe has failed somehow. Never heard of that happening though. I'm out of ideas. Have you also asked this question on an Acer forum?
Don't worry.
Yeah, I've tried already tried a lot of things on the Software side of things, although it's the first time I hear of BIOS Viruses so it might be worth looking into that.
as for the hardware side of things I did check fan speeds and they are working at it's rated speed, not sure about cooling heat pipes failings though, it's also the first time I hear of that so I'm definitely gonna take a look into that.
And no this is the first time I post my issue on any forum so I will definitely try to post on the Acer forum.
 
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