Last reply by 07-31-2022 Unsolved
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CPU temperature spikes on XPS 13 9310

I have an XPS 13 9310, less than a year old. It's equipped with 512G SSD and 16G RAM. I use it for word processing (Word), browsing (FireFox), email (Eudora), spreadsheets (Excel), etc --- but absolutely no gaming, no streaming videos, etc. Overall, pretty plain-vanilla usage, I think.

I recently installed an app (Core Temp 1.17.1) that monitors CPU temperature. I've set the app to raise an alert if the temp of any of the laptop's four cores reaches 85C.

The app shows the laptop typically operating at temps in the 30C to 50C range. What worries me is that for no apparent reason the temp has occasionally spiked into the 90s, and in at least one case to 100C, a core's critical temperature. It then immediately backs down -- usually to the 50C range -- in less than a second. This has happened both when plugged in and on battery power.

Is this 'normal'??

The laptop sits on a stand, with its bottom surface raised about 0.25 inches above the surface of that stand. It does not feel particularly hot. Room temp is about 75F.

I have an Anker USB hub plugged into the laptop's Thunderbolt port. Plugged into this hub are an external keyboard (Logitec G115) and a Logitec wireless mouse. Dell Power Management is set to the Cool option. As far as I can tell, the laptop's internal fan is working (though very quiet).

I'm typing this on the laptop's own keyboard, with the wireless mouse communicating directly with the laptop. That is, the Anker hub and the external keyboard are not involved. In this state, the temperature has remained rock steady between 35C and 37C. Could the hub and/or the external keyboard be the source of the temperature spikes?

Any insight would be appreciated.


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2 Bronze
2 Bronze

Have you tried to unplug the dock and use it without? does the temps still spike?



I've removed the Anker hub. The external keyboard (which is a Logitec G110, by the way, not a G115) is plugged directly into the laptop's right-hand Thunderbolt port. The dongle for the wireless mouse is plugged into a USB port on the keyboard. The laptop power supply is plugged into the laptop's left-hand Thunderbolt port and is ON.

The following programs are loaded: Word, Excel, Access, Firefox, Eudora (email). Except for Firefox, in which I'm writing this, all programs are idling. Task Manager, when briefly loaded, shows CPU usage in the 4% range.

Core Temp has been pretty consistently in the high-30C to high-40C range, with occasional excursions into the 50Cs. But just now I noticed it spike briefly to 61C.

A while ago I was also running WinZip. I had created a new Zip archive and was adding files to it, and Core Temp, which is set to sound an alarm if CPU temp hits 85C, in fact sounded an alarm and showed a core temp of 96C for about a second.

Before that, while I was running Dell SupportAssist's Scan Hardware option, CPU temperature also spiked and sounded an alarm. The results of the scan, however, including the fan test, showed no problems; all systems passed.

So what does this all mean? How 'normal' is it for CPU temperature to briefly spike to values that are close to the processor's Tmax? Should I be worried? Is my laptop slowly degrading and vulnerable to dying an early death?

I need an external keyboard and an external mouse, so I can't eliminate their use. I don't know what else to try. (Remember, Dell Power Management is already set to the Cool option.)

Any insight would be greatly appreciated.



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How do I do that? Start a live chat or something else?


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Find your Service Tag

If still under warranty, click the "Get help now" icon on the right to start a live chat session. Currently only available in the USA.


I'm sorry; I cannot find that link. I am on your profile page, but nowhere does it say 'Send this user a private message'


The clam shell that you have is easy to re-paste, in comparison to the 2-in-1. This will likely go a long way to addressing the issue. Mine is the 2-in-1 and just re-pasted yesterday for the same concerns. The factory paste was horrible and glad I did it. Temps are lower now as a result. Linked below will not apply to you for the walk through but you can see how bad the factory paste was.



I don't have the skill or the guts to open up the laptop and attempt a re-paste, but thanks for the insight.

I've acquired an external (Tecknet) fan base, and temperature seems to be much more stable now.

I've reinstalled the Anker hub, returning my setup to its initial state. With the fan base installed, temperature remains in the low 30C's, with only occasional brief departures into the 50C's under greater load. Core Temp 1.17.1 has breached my 85C alarm setting only once -- ironically when running Dell's SupportAssist to update SupportAssist's OS Recovery module.


2 Bronze
2 Bronze


There's only one solution. Repaste the CPU/GPU with good thermal paste. the paste dell uses is awful and ineffective at transferring heat from the cpu to the heatpipe.

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