How To Tell If Your CPU Is Dying

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How to tell if your CPU is dying

There are a number of different reasons for your CPU to start slowing down. If your CPU is dying or is getting older, slower and mor unreliable so is the speed and power of the applications you are running on your PC. In this article we show you the different reasons for your CPU gettng slower and dying and also what you can do to fix the problem. Sometimes it seems as if the CPU is weakening, but actually the cause of the problem is somewhere else.

In this article, we are going to examine all the possible signs of a CPU failure. This guide wil help you locate the problem in their computers, if there is an actual issue with the CPU of your computer or laptop.

Computer Starting and Turning Off Right Away

Turning your computer or laptop on and right after switching on it is shutting down again? A CPU failure could be the cause of such a problem. This can happen because of a quick increase in temperature when the laptop or cumputer gets turned on. In every computer or laptop there are temperature sensors built in to register CPU temperature. If the the registered temperature is too high, as a safety mechanism, not to cause more damage to the components of your computer, the system shuts down.

What to do when Computer shuts down while gaming

System Issues When Booting Up

Another common symptom of a dying CPU is that your computer or laptop is not turning on at all. It doesn’t show any Error messages or anything else. This could be the effect of a dead CPU.

Sometimes there can be other causes of such a problem. Other reasons include a defect graphics card, problems with the power unit, or even a plug that is not connected right and sitting loose. Often times there can be an issue with the motherboard. You can locate the issue if you open your computer or laptop up. You need to check, while the computer is plugged in (!) if the motherboard’s power lights are still running. If so you need to remove the graphics card and then try to restart the computer. This might take a little while, but then your computer is running on the CPU graphics unit, which is not very good, but at least you can access your PC again.

If the cause of the problem is not the motherboard, power-unit or graphics card, the probability is very high that the CPU is causing the issues. You can send it back to the Manufacturer if there is still warranty on the unit. Keep in mind that a CPU just dying from one to another moment is very rare and usually the problem’s cause is some other component in your PC.

Freezing of the system while in operation

How to fix a freezing computer

A lot of users often report of their computer freezing while they use it. Whether it’s during gamimg, editing a 4K video for youtube, or while preparing a presentation in Microsoft’s Powerpoint this issue can be extremely annoying. In more severe cases the system even freezes after booting up and logging in to the users Windows account and then starts again. this loop repeats itself endlessly.

This symptom can have many different causes. As with issues while booting up the causes of the problem could be defective power units, weak and irregular power supply, as well as many other issues.

In order to solve the issue you also need to locate where the problem stems from. You can do this by opening up the computer case or laptop and systematically check all the components inside. these components include, but are not limited to, the power unit, the motherboard, graphics card and the CPU.

The famous Blue Screen of Death

Blue Screen of Death
The infamous Blue Screen of Death

A coupe of years ago the so called “Blue screen of death or BSOD” used to be a lot more common than it is today. In Microsoft’s Windows the BSOD has been changed a bit to a simpler display of the issue. The Blue screen of death in older operating systems did look very confusing. This is what it looked like:

Blue screen of death old
The old Blue Screen of Death

For regular computer users the BSOD is very confusing, as it is not clear where the problem is or what is causing the malfunction. The Blue Screen of Death usually is related to a hardware problem and not a software bug. This means your CPU could also be a cause of the BSOD. If the CPU is failing you will get the error message ‘System Abort’.

The error message ‘System Abort’ is not a guarantee that the problem is caused by a dying CPU, but it is narrowing down the possibilities from where the issue could stem.

CPU Idle Temp Too High

Many users wonder what is a good idle temp for the CPU. You have the feeling that your PC becomes much slower when it is very busy. In the worst case, it switches itself off suddenly during operation. You suspect the cause of this to be overheating of the processor. Therefore you want to monitor the temperature of your CPU. Here is how you proceed.

Of course you can find out the temperature of your CPU via the bios of your computer. However, this is a somewhat cumbersome way. A more comfortable way is to use a free tool. This also gives you a quicker overview of the CPU temperature. A comparatively simple application is Core Temp, since it is limited to reading the CPU values.

CPU Core temp screenshot
Core Temp gives you many data points regarding CPU and temperature

Another program that deals with all other components of your PC besides the processor is HWInfo. This software is very extensive, but also a bit confusing. Nevertheless it is suitable if you want to get information about the load of the graphics card and other hardware at the same time.

HW info CPU Data

The NZXT Cam software is much clearer and therefore more user-friendly, and in addition to the CPU it also deals with other components. For this purpose, it even offers an in-game FPS overlay that shows you the current frames per second in games in real time. In addition, there are various tools for overclocking. You can use this software in guest mode or register with your mail address. This gives you the advantage of storing and retrieving your PC’s history in the NZXT cloud. When you start the software for the first time, you will receive a short briefing on which functions are available to you under each menu item. Afterwards you can read the current CPU temperature at a glance and then you only have to decide whether the displayed value is ideal or critical.

It is important to know that each CPU has an individual maximum temperature, which most tools show you under the “Tj.Max” item. If this info is not included, you can alternatively find the model number of your CPU on the website CPU-World. com to determine the corresponding value.

NZXT Cam CPU Data
Great CPU analytics tool – NZXT Cam

Apart from the maximum temperature, you should also note the following gradations: Below sixty degrees Celsius, your CPU has the ideal operating temperature. A rise to seventy degrees Celsius is also still fairly harmless. To get the processor back into the ideal range, a simple measure helps: Free the components from dust. However, if the temperature rises to eighty degrees Celsius, you should take a closer look and check if all fans are working properly. Because from these temperatures on, things could become critical. Exception: You have overclocked your processor. In this case such a high temperature is normal.

However, from ninety degrees Celsius onwards, there is an urgent need for action, because your PC is now in a really critical condition. If you have already cleaned the computer from dust and dirt, please check all fans for their function. If you can’t find any improvement, it’s advisable to take a look at the thermal paste. This is located between the CPU and the processor cooler. On a computer that you have already owned for several years, it is quite possible that the paste dries out and thus loses its function.

If this is the case, simply remove the paste residue with a cloth. Also make sure that you do not bring other components into contact with the paste. After applying the new heat-conducting paste, you should already notice an improvement. If the temperature is still too high, the next step is to check the CPU cooler for function and compatibility and replace it with a newer, more powerful model if necessary. You have the choice between air and water cooler. The closed water cooling systems always achieve a better cooling performance if you use your system in the high performance range.

Replacing loud CPU fan with a bigger quiet fan

The most effective method in the fight against a noisy standard CPU fan is to install a larger model. We decided to use our test computer, which has an already older CPU, for the Scythe Mugen II. Of course, you can also choose another model, but you should definitely check two things before buying & installing:

  1. Does the new cooler fit the CPU? The freeware CPU-Z tells you the required socket in the “CPU” tab under “Package” – for example “Socket 775” for an old Intel CPU. Compare the information with the fan description.
  2. Is there enough space in the PC case for the new cooler? Don’t be alarmed: Good coolers are large and heavy because they have a lush surface and a large fan. It is best to measure the free space with a ruler and compare it again with the specifications of your favorite fan. There should also be some space for the airflow to the wall of the case. Also check whether adjacent mainboard areas have enough space, such as the RAM slots and the graphics card.

If you checked these points off you can start installing the new CPU cooling fan. This guide explains it very clear and easy to understand:


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