My Laptop Computer runs warm. <BR>Should I buy a cooling pad?

My friend, Chuck Harroun emailed this question, “I have a Notebook computer and I have noticed that the bottom of it becomes warm. Should I buy one of those Notebook “Coolers” or a base with an extra fan in it?”

I've owned a dozen or so notebook computers and some have operated warmer than others. A few years ago I had a Sony Vaio 505 and when it's fan failed it would sometimes stop working completely when it heated up. Eventually I replaced the internal fan but a cooling fan may have also worked.

The bottom line is that computers usually run better and last longer when they stay cool. Sometimes a computer's internal electronics can become so hot that the computer stops working completely until the computer cools down.

Many laptops have inbuilt cooling fans that are thermostatically controlled. If your computer becomes only slightly warm, this inbuilt fan should be adequate. However, if your computer seems to run hot or too warm, you may want to consider an external cooling p


Notebook cooling pads sit below your laptop computer to draw heat away from your computer. Cooling pads are light and aerodynamic and contain one or more small fans that are powered by your notebook's USB port. Of course, your laptop must have vents on the bottom or the cooling pad will be of little use. has a Notebook USB Cooler Pad with 2 Fans for $11 with free shipping. This is one of the least expensive cooling pads I've seen

Cooling Pad, click this link

Another solution might be to slow down your computer's processor. Sometimes you can configure a notebook to NOT use the CPU at full power which may prevent the notebook from overheating. Sometimes the CPU speed and power setting is in the notebook computer's startup (CMOS) menu. However, I don't blame you if you don't want to change CMOS settings to intentionally slow down your computer.

Chuck Eglinton