Alienware System Overheats or Shuts Down

Alienware System Overheats or Shuts Down



Alienware System Overheats or Shuts Down

  1. What you need to know about overheating
  2. Troubleshooting by Platform

This article provides information about overheating and system shutdowns, which may occur due to dust accumulation, out of date BIOS, or improper usage environment.


1. What you need to know about overheating

System can become warm to the touch during usage when

  • Using for longer than 10-15 minutes.
  • Watching a DVD/Blu-ray.
  • Streaming online video.
  • Watching or Interacting with Flash Content.
  • Playing Video Games or Online Games.
  • Using near a heat source or in a hot environment.

What symptoms will I experience if my system is overheating?

  • Random Shutdowns
  • System Freezing
  • Random Reboots
  • System Locking up
Monitoring your Alienware System temperatures

For Monitoring and Stress your Alienware System, we recommend you to use Dell Support Assist. With this Tool, you can stress and monitor your hardware in realtime.

Video: Video Stress Test for Your Alienware (English Only)

  • Video Card

    • Download and install Dell Support Assist
    • Open Dell Support Assist
    • Click Checkup
    • Click Scan a Specific Device
    • Click Video Card
    • Select the Video Card Stress Test and Run it.
    • The Video Card Stress Test will make enough stress for GPU and VRAM, also will give you Real Time temperature reading.
    • For Desktop Video Cards, the maximum temperature per GPU is 95C (There are some video cards that work over 100C).
    • For Laptop Video Cards, the maximum temperature per GPU is 85C.
  • Processor

    • Download and install Dell Support Assist
    • Open Dell Support Assist
    • Click Checkup
    • Click Scan a Specific Device
    • Click System Devices
    • Select the CPU Stress Test and Run it. This Test will load the CPU and Ram to 100% and test it. It will make enoguh heat to determine if the processor is overheating or not.



      Picture 1 - CPU Stress Test Running



      Picture 2 - CPU Load according to Task Manager



      Picture 3 - RAM Load according to Task Manager

    • When the Test finishes, open the "View Detailed Report" to check the Initial idle temperature and the Maximum temperature during the stress test.



    • For Desktop Processors, the maximum temperature per GPU is 90C (There are some Processors that work over 100C).
    • For Laptop Processors, the maximum temperature per GPU is 80C.
Note: Fan noise and speed can increase or decrease due to the temperature of the system

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2. Troubleshooting by Platform

Alpha Overheating: The Alienware Alpha can overheat due to obstructions and dirtiness on the exhaust vents or fans and heatsinks dirty.

Solution
  • Power the Alpha OFF.
  • Clean the system rear vents


  • To clean the internal fans and exhaust, you have to open the Alpha Console. For opening the System, try the following steps:
    • Remove the 4 screws securing the Bottom Cover to the Chassis


    • Use a plastic scribe to pry the Bottom Cover from Chassis. Start from one edge and pry all four sides to release it.


    • Lift up the Bottom Cover from the chassis.


    • Turn the system over to lay it on its base.


    • Lift the Top Cover off the system


    • The image shows the system with the Bottom Cover and the Top Cover removed. Blow air to clean the Fans and exhaust.

  • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
    • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
    • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alpha Drivers and Downloads area.
    • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest versions from this link.
  • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
Note: Keyboard required to access ePSA.


Alienware Area-51 R2 Overheating

Application
  • Power the Area-51 R2 OFF.
  • To dissasembly the PCI FAN in the Area-51 R2, please watch this video:


  • To dissasembly the Video Cards in the Area-51 R2, please watch this video:


  • Verify the Liquid Cooling System Pump is properly connected.


  • Verify the Liquid Cooling System Fan is properly connected.


  • Verify the Top Fan is properly connected.


  • Verify the Liquid Cooling CPU Hetsink retaining screws loose. Sometimes when moving the computer to from one place to another or during shipping, the retaining screws on the processor heatsink can become loose, although this is rare it may happen. to fix his, wait until the system is completely cold and secure the four screws retaining the heatsink, use a cross action sequence until they are tight, don't over tight them.


  • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
    • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
    • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Area-51 R2 Drivers and Downloads area.
    • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
  • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.


Alienware Area-51 R1 Overheating Troubleshooting

Application
  • Power the Area-51 R1 OFF.
  • To dissasembly the Area-51 R1, please watch this video:


  • Clean the system the rear vents and grills


  • Clean the system the top vents



  • Open the right Side Door to clean the internal fans and exhaust. For opening the System, try the following steps:
    • Locate the left side-panel


    • Lift the left side release latch handle.


    • Swing the left side-panel out.

  • Clean the PCI fan


  • Clean the Hard Drive fan


  • Clean the Chipset fan


  • Verify the Liquid Cooling CPU Hetsink retaining screws loose. Sometimes when moving the computer to from one place to another or during shipping, the retaining screws on the processor heatsink can become loose, although this is rare it may happen. to fix his, wait until the system is completely cold and secure the four screws retaining the heatsink, use a cross action sequence until they are tight, don't over tight them.


  • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
    • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
    • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Area-51 R1 Drivers and Downloads area.
    • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
  • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.


Aurora Systems Overheating Troubleshooting

Application
  • Power the Aurora OFF.
  • To dissasembly the Aurora, please watch these videos:








  • Clean the system the rear vents and grills


  • Clean the system the top vents


  • Open the right Side Door to clean the internal fans and exhaust. For opening the System, try the following steps:
    • Locate the left side-panel.


    • Slide the latch to unlock the release panel.


    • Lift the release panel.


    • Lift the release panel. Hold the side cover as it pivots outward.

  • Clean the PCI fan


  • Clean the Hard Drive fan


  • Clean the Chipset fan


  • Clean the Memory fan


  • Verify the Liquid Cooling CPU Heatsink retaining screws loose. Sometimes when moving the computer to from one place to another or during shipping, the retaining screws on the processor heatsink can become loose, although this is rare it may happen. to fix his, wait until the system is completely cold and secure the four screws retaining the heatsink, use a cross action sequence until they are tight, don't over tight them.

  • Verify the bottom cables not hindering the lower Video Card. Refer to the following video on How to re-arrange the Aurora cabling:


  • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
    • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
    • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Aurora Drivers and Downloads area.
    • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
  • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.

Alienware X51 Overheating : The Alienware X51 can overheat due to video card fan may be hindered by a system cable, making the video card to overheat, shuts down the computer, may crash to a blue screen or memory dump (0x000000116), or the screen will go black. Also Bios update and Video Card Driver updates can help you to keep the system with good working temperatures.

Solution
  • Power the X51 OFF.
  • Lay the X51 on its right side so the rear is facing you and the DVI ports are on top



  • Remove the one Phillips screw securing the Left Side Cover to the System Chassis



  • Carefully push the Left Side Cover towards the front of the system. Exert enough force to just release the Left Side Cover



  • Carefully flip the Left Side Cover up and left. Leave the Lighting Board cable attached. Just rest the cover next to the system



  • You might need to access the video card and hard drive bay, in order to remove the video card you can watch this video and continue after you have the card removed



  • Once you have the video card away. Check if there are any wires that might be hindering the video card fan or any fans move them away from the fans and try to position them so they do not hinder the video card fan. Look closely where the clamps are located and if there is any wire out from them reposition it and push the clamp to secure the wires.



  • While the cover is removed, power the X51 ON and visually make sure nothing is hindering the fans.

  • If no cables are hindering the video card fan or any fan, Power the X51 OFF, make sure the metal retaining clamps are pushed all the way down securing those cables, reassemble the computer and test again. (Tip. If the door lights go off reseat the door as necessary)
  • For systems equipped with an NVidia GTX make sure the power cable is connected to card (just one is needed), also check the cables are secured to the card holder.



  • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
    • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
    • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Aurora Drivers and Downloads area.
    • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
  • If your system is equipped with an NVidia GTX Graphics Card and after performing these steps it keeps overheating, you may need to control the video card fan speed by software, click here to download and install MSI After burner.(Tip: If your system was purchased with an NVidia 545 GT, 555 GTX, 640 GT, 645 GT, 660 GTX, 670 GTX, 745 GTX, 750 GT, 760 GTX Ti Graphics cards, you can also install this application to boost the performance of the graphics card and to avoid overheating.
  • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.

Alienware 14, 17 R1, 18

Application
  • Alienware 14
    • Power the Alienware 14 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear air vents (Number 4)

      1. AlienHead
      2. Led Indicators
      3. Ac/Adapter Port
      4. Air Vents
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware 14 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware 17 R1
    • Power the Alienware 17 R1 OFF.
    • To remove and clean the CPU Heatsink, watch this video:


    • To remove and clean the Video Card Heatsink, watch this video:


    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ventilation holes.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware 17 R1 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware 18
    • Power the Alienware 18 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ventilation holes.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware 18 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.

Alienware 13, 15, 17 R2

Application
  • Alienware 13
    • Power the Alienware 13 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Air Vents.
      2. External Graphics-Dock Port.
      3. Mini-Display Output Port.
      4. HDMI Output Port.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware 13 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware 15
    • Power the Alienware 15 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Air Vents.
      2. External Graphics-Dock Port.
      3. Mini-Display Output Port.
      4. HDMI Output Port.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware 15 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware 17 R2
    • Power the Alienware 17 R2 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Air Vents.
      2. External Graphics-Dock Port.
      3. Mini-Display Output Port.
      4. HDMI Output Port.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware 17 R2 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.

Alienware M14x R2, M17x R4, M18x R2

Application
  • Alienware M14x R2
    • Power the Alienware M14x R2 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ac/Adapter Port.
      2. Ventilation holes.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M14x R2 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware M17x R4
    • Power the Alienware M17x R4 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ventilation holes.
      2. Ac/Adapter Port.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M17x R4 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware M18x R2
    • Power the Alienware M18x R2 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ventilation holes.
      2. Ac/Adapter Port.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M18x R2 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.

Alienware M14x R1, M17x R3, M18x R1

Application
  • Alienware M14x R1
    • Power the Alienware M14x R1 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ac/Adapter Port.
      2. Ventilation holes.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M14x R1 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware M17x R3
    • Power the Alienware M17x R3 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ventilation holes.
      2. Ac/Adapter Port.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M17x R3 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware M18x R1
    • Power the Alienware M18x R1 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ventilation holes.
      2. Ac/Adapter Port.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M18x R1 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.

Alienware M11x R1,R2,R3

Application
  • Alienware M11x R1
    • Power the Alienware M11x R1 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ac/Adapter Port.
      2. Ventilation holes.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M11x R1 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware M11x R2
    • Power the Alienware M11x R2 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ac/Adapter Port.
      2. Ventilation holes.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M11x R2 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware M11x R3
    • Power the Alienware M11x R3 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents

      1. Ac/Adapter Port.
      2. Ventilation holes.
    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M11x R3 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.

Alienware M17x R1,R2

Application
  • Alienware M17x R1
    • Power the Alienware M17x R1 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents


    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M17x R1 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.
  • Alienware M17x R2
    • Power the Alienware M17x R2 OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents


    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M17x R2 Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.

Alienware M15x

Application
  • Alienware M15x
    • Power the Alienware M15x OFF.
    • Clean the system rear vents


    • Update the System Bios and Video Card drivers
      • An out of date Bios can cause heat issues by having an outdated temperature table for the system.
      • In order to get the latest Bios update, you can go to the Alienware M15x Drivers and Downloads area.
      • For the Video Card Drivers, you can download the latest laptop versions from www.nvidia.com and www.amd.com accodingly to the Video Card Brand you owned.
    • Run ePSA to test Fans, GPU, CPU, Thermals.

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Tips for Proper Usage

  • Using a Laptop on a hard, flat, non-cloth surface will increase airflow and reduce heat from underneath and inside the system.
Using the Laptop on blanket, pillow, or other type of cloth will cover up the fan cause the computer to overheat and can cause permanent damage.
  • It is recommended to use the Laptop in a Room temperature of 0°C to 35°C (32°F to 95°F) with a Humidity level no greater than 90%.
For specified environmental usage temperatures for your system refer to your User's Guide or Setup Guide
  • Use compressed air to clean the vents on a regular basis.
  • Using a cooling pad can decrease heat and increase performance.
Note: Do not use your mouth to blow the Dust out of a Laptop. If using a can of compressed air use the can according to the directions on the side of the can as you can cause damage to the computer if used incorrectly.

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Quick Tips content is self-published by the Dell Support Professionals who resolve issues daily. In order to achieve a speedy publication, Quick Tips may represent only partial solutions or work-arounds that are still in development or pending further proof of successfully resolving an issue. As such Quick Tips have not been reviewed, validated or approved by Dell and should be used with appropriate caution. Dell shall not be liable for any loss, including but not limited to loss of data, loss of profit or loss of revenue, which customers may incur by following any procedure or advice set out in the Quick Tips.

Article ID: SLN114853

Last Date Modified: 11/06/2018 05:03 AM


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