How to fix overheating hard drive?


In this blog we will explain how to fix an overheating hard drive.

What causes a hard drive to overheat?

If you’re asking yourself, “Why does my desktop overheat?”, then the first thing to do is check and see if your fan is working. You can do this by listening for a rattling or grinding noise. If the fan isn’t spinning, it might be because there’s something clogging it, such as dust and dirt particles. Use a compressed air duster to clean out your vents and other parts of the computer to free up the airflow.

If you’re running anything resource-intensive (like games), your laptop’s hard drive will get hotter than normal because it has to work harder to do what it needs to do, and the fan has to work harder, too. The fan isn’t meant to be on all day and night; your laptop is designed so that the parts don’t overheat and break while you use it.

Technical explaination

Every electronic device – your smartphone, tablet, laptop, desktop PC and even your television – runs off one or more integrated circuits, otherwise known as ‘chips’. These chips are made up of millions of transistors that act like switches when electrical current passes through them. When each transistor is in the ‘off’ position it’s not letting electricity flow through to other components in your machine because it has an insulating layer around it. If this was removed so that all the transistors were conducting electricity, they would overheat under normal conditions. And if some of those transistors got stuck on ‘on’, they’d short circuit and break the computer immediately.

Very first microprocessors had only a few thousand transistors with the newest processors containing around 6,000,000,000 (6 billion) of them. The more transistors you pack onto one chip the faster it can process data but this also means that they generate more heat when switching on and off.

It is essential for computers to display information on your monitor or printer. It takes the form of an enclosed box filled with disks that are rotated at high speeds by a motor in order to store and load files into memory. Hard drives have small metal components which expand in warm conditions – these are what causes hard drives to overheat .

What happens if a hard drive overheats?

When a computer gets too hot, its performance will suffer. It’ll crash more often and programs may not respond as quickly or they might crash right off the bat. You can usually tell when this starts happening if there’s something wrong with your cooling fans. If you clean them out and keep an eye on your processor temperature through Windows Task Manager, you can avoid a complete computer meltdown.


How to fix an overheating hard drive?

If your hard drive is overheating, there are a few things you can do to try and fix the issue.


The first step is to make sure that your computer is properly ventilated. If there is not enough airflow, your computer will overheat. Make sure that there are no obstructions in front of the fans, and that the fans are clean and dust-free.

Cooling pad

If your computer still continues to overheat, you may need to purchase a cooling pad for your laptop or an external fan for your desktop.


Another thing you can do is to check the hard drive’s temperature. If it is too hot, you may need to replace it. You can check the temperature by downloading a free program like SpeedFan.


Another thing you can do is to check the hard drive’s temperature. If it is too hot, you may need to replace it. You can check the temperature by downloading a free program called “hddtemp”.

If your computer is overheating, it will turn off automatically to keep itself from being damaged. When you turn it back on, the hard drive might not be working properly because it was too hot. If this is the case, check if the noise is coming from the hard drive (the place where you save all your files). If it comes from that area of the laptop or desktop, then you might need to replace the hard drive.

Check cooling system

There are many options available when judging how effective your cooling system is, so start by checking if your computer is designed to handle warmth.

Make sure the vent on your laptop is not blocked and that surrounding objects such as books and clothes do not cover vents – this could lead to overheating. Removing the battery when on mains power is also a good idea. If your laptop has hardware temperature controls then turning down the cooling fans or setting them to run at a slower speed will decrease hard drive heating and prolong its life expectancy.

Heat sinks and fans are essential for desktop computers, but these too can be improved upon by buying aftermarket models which have more efficient designs than those of typical computer hardware manufacturers. Installing additional case fans draws air across your hard drive’s components so if you notice they get particularly hot heavy use it may be time to invest in some.

Many people don’t think about the hard drive when it comes to cooling their computer, but it’s one of the most important components to keep cool. Hard drives generate a lot of heat and if they’re not cooled properly, they can overheat and fail.

If you are still having overheating issues, get in touch with one of our repairs experts.

I am a computer engineer holding a bachelor's degree in Computer Science, complemented by a Master's in Business Administration from University of Strathclyde, Scotland. I currently work as a Senior IT Consultant in Melbourne, Australia. With over 15 years of...