The case of a loud and slow laptop


This morning I was called by a new customer with a complaint about a slow laptop whose fan was running all the time and very loudly. As they were nearby, I stopped in for a quick look, on my way to another appointment. The laptop, though a few years old, still has plenty of life in it, was running slowly and was also very hot. A few minutes of question and answer determined most of the problem.

The office the laptop is used in is very dusty. The rubber feet on the bottom had been worn off and the laptop was sitting almost flush on the desk, limiting air flow. I also learned the laptop is used at home, a lot. Usually ‘in bed’ sitting on the blankets or sheet. Again, terribly limiting air flow.

I took a few minutes to open a few panels on the machine, blow out dust, dirt. I also removed some pet hair and other fibers. We looked round the office, finding an old phone book about an inch thick. Placing this on the desk, with the back edge of the laptop on it and with the palm rest on the desk, we were able to increase the air flow significantly. Previously, the machine would start getting loud within a minute or two of use. After this small change, the fan had not kicked into high for at least 5 minutes.

In addition, we discussed how to protect the machine while using it at home. First, I explained how using the laptop on a loose cloth, like a bed spread, will suck the cloth up against the machine, essentially closing off the inbound air ports. So the customer is going to look for a lap table to use at home.

Not all of us use our machines this way. But many of our children in high school or college do use their technology in bed, on couches, etc. Let’s share this post with them to help ensure they get the most use out of the machines.

If you have any questions or need a machine checked for slowness or noise issues, please call us here at Indy’s I.T. Department at 317-560-4443 or drop us an e-mail as

By | 2017-10-18T14:10:22+00:00 October 18th, 2017|Business Continuity, Hardware, Services|0 Comments

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