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SSD Overheating: 5 Expert Fixes for an Overheating SSD

SSD Overheating can occur due to a variety of reasons including prolonged heavy usage, inadequate ventilation, or even firmware bugs. Operating at elevated temperatures not only hampers the performance of SSDs but also significantly reduces their lifespan.

Let’s first accept that hot SSDs are normal. In fact, you will see most of the brands offering their SSD with their own heatsink options. There are SSDs that are always packed inside the heatsinks. Now with the latest Gen 5.0 SSDs, 80ºC to 85ºC is the new normal.

In this article, I delve into the intricacies of SSD overheating, helping you understand why it happens, how to identify it, and most importantly, sharing five expert fixes to cool down your overheating SSD and ensure it operates at an optimal temperature range, thereby safeguarding your data and enhancing the drive’s lifespan.

Join me as I navigate the thermal dynamics of SSDs, offering you a roadmap to maintaining a healthy, cool, and efficient SSD, ensuring a seamless computing experience.

Generally, SSDs are designed to function efficiently within a temperature range of 0ºC to 70ºC. This is a standard that applies universally, irrespective of the SSD’s brand or model.

If I were to touch an SSD operating at 50ºC, it would feel quite warm, perhaps even alarmingly so. However, this is well within the safe operating temperature range for SSDs, demonstrating their robustness and ability to withstand heat.

During periods of inactivity, SSDs tend to stay on the cooler side. However, I’ve noticed that the temperature can spike significantly when handling heavy tasks, a normal behavior for these devices. They heat up under strenuous activity and cool down once the workload lightens, exhibiting a kind of thermal ebb and flow.

I would become concerned if my SSD remained hot even during light usage or while idle, as this could signal a problem. Typically, SSDs hover between 30ºC and 50ºC when active, a range that, while warm to the touch, is perfectly normal and safe for operations.

But does this mean I should ignore the potential risk of overheating? Not at all. I am of the opinion that it is always better to maintain a cooler operational environment for SSDs.

Therefore, I find it wise to monitor the temperature of my SSD regularly. And no, there’s no need for a thermometer; various sophisticated tools are available to help keep an eye on your SSD’s thermal health, ensuring it stays within the safe operating range.

To measure the temperatures of your solid-state drive, you could use the Open Hardware Monitor. It is free software that would allow you to see the temperatures of your drives. 

Some other good software to check SSD temperature are CrystalDiskInfo, Speccy, AIDA64 Extreme, and Samsung Magician.

SSDs are smart drives, most SSDs will start throttling when their temperature approaches near 70ºC. The drive will slow down a bit and let itself cool down. 

When your SSD reaches a temperature of 70ºC and above, it slows down considerably and you will see glitches and pauses in your system performance. You would not want this to happen, therefore, try keeping your SSD cooler. 

SSDs generally don’t overheat but if they do, you should try to find out the cause and fix it accordingly. If your SSD is not overheating and running at the optimal temperature then you should not try to cool it down. 

When SSDs are put in heavy workloads of reads and writes, their temperature rises, it’s normal. But if you see your SSD overheating more than normal, you could try putting less load on your SSD. Or, you should think of upgrading to a better SSD option such as Samsung. That is not the best solution, but worth trying to avoid wearing out of flash memory inside the drive. 

You should regularly close applications and programs running in the background and take up disk memory. Go to the task manager to find such applications and end their execution.  

SSD consumes very little energy and overheats rarely. If your SSD is warming up unusually, consider checking if it’s getting good airflow. If your SSD cannot access proper airflow, consider fixing it

Many SSD come in an enclosure, make sure the enclosure takes heat away from the SSD rather than heating it. 

If your task manager shows no processes running and you see full disk usage, malware might be troubling you in disguise. Certain malware programs are known for taking up disk space by running programs in the background. You should be wary of viruses and malware. Use antivirus software to inspect malware and virus attacks. 

Most models of SSDs run cool but they may get heated up by nearby components

If you are on a PC or desktop, keep an eye on if the CPU is overheating. You might want to install a fan or a heatsink if your CPU is overheating. 

Put your SSD in a place where it does not catch heat from the components that usually overheat. 

Over time, dust and debris can accumulate in the system, acting as insulators that trap heat. I make it a habit to clean the interior of my computer regularly to prevent dust buildup.

Along with that, keeping the firmware updated is crucial. SSD manufacturers keep publishing new firmware and updates to fix bugs and these things can easily be found related to the heat.

Inside a laptop, if your SSD is getting heated by nearby components then you can’t do much about it. One solution could be getting your laptop checked and fixing the overheating issues of other components. 

There are some models of solid-state drives that are popular for causing the overheating issue. If you have M.2 then it might be the reason for overheating. And mSATA SSDs are also not that good at keeping cool. 

You may want to upgrade to a new SSD if overheating troubles you. Another solution could be ensuring good airflow and maybe using something like thermal pads to extract heat. 

Any Solid State Electronics will start to break down once they reach the frying temperature i.e. 120 Degrees. So, even if your Hardware monitoring is showing a temperature above 80 Degrees, it is surely a warning sign. At that time, you will have to do something to fix it.

In my suggestions, it will be good to get in touch with a professional and seek help to get rid of this issue.

There could be various reasons for an SSD to overheat. Heavy workload, lack of sufficient airflow, heat from nearby components, some not-so-good SSDs, etc. are the common causes of SSD overheating.

If you have tried common fixes and your SSD still overheats, you may seek help from an expert. Most SSDs come with a warranty, consider reaching out to the manufacturer for some assistance. There is always a chance that your SSD is faulty. 

Thanks for reading and hope it helps. 

What is the normal operating temperature for SSDs?

Typically, SSDs operate safely within a temperature range of 0ºC to 70ºC. However, maintaining a temperature between 30ºC and 50ºC during active use can help in prolonging the lifespan of the SSD.

Can overheating cause permanent damage to my SSD?

Yes, consistent overheating can lead to a reduction in the SSD’s lifespan and, in extreme cases, can cause irreversible damage to the data stored on the SSD.

Are there any signs that indicate my SSD is overheating?

Yes, signs such as system crashes, errors during file transfers, and unusually slow performance can be indicators of an overheating SSD.

Does firmware update help in reducing SSD overheating?

Absolutely, firmware updates often come with bug fixes and improvements that can help in reducing issues related to overheating. It’s a good practice to keep your SSD firmware up-to-date to ensure optimal performance.

Can I use any cooling accessory for my SSD?

Yes, there are cooling accessories like heatsinks and cooling pads specifically designed for SSDs that can help in reducing the temperature. However, ensure that the accessory is compatible with your SSD model before purchasing.

Thanks for Reading!

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