2011 MBA Getting too hot

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by shahrezsyed, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. shahrezsyed macrumors regular

    Oct 1, 2011
    Stony Brook, New York
    I'm currently using an i7 256GB 13" MBA 2011 and for a few months now, since I installed Mountain Lion (I think), the CPU usage has been showing really high. According to iStats, my CPU Temperature is 96 degrees right now and that with CPU usage 48% is User usage, 6% system usage and 46% is idle and my fans are running at full blast.
    This, to me is crazy because I just restarted the computer and there is nothing but safari running with one tab open right now!
    What do I do about this?

  2. bp1000 macrumors 65816

    Jul 7, 2011
    What app is using the CPU?

    If its safari you may want to check your flash and silver light plugins are up to date and possibly install ad block and flashblock

    You can of course fall foul to a badly designed flash advert that causes high CPU usage
  3. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Follow every step of the following instructions precisely. Do not skip any steps.
    1. Launch Activity Monitor
    2. Change "My Processes" at the top to "All Processes"
    3. Click on the "% CPU" column heading once or twice, so the arrow points downward (highest values on top). (If that column isn't visible, right-click on the column headings and check it, NOT "CPU Time")
    4. Click on the System Memory tab at the bottom.
    5. Take a screen shot of the entire Activity Monitor window, then scroll down to see the rest of the list, take another screen shot
    6. Post your screenshots.

    If you're not already doing so, use iStat Pro (free) or iStat Menus ($16) to get accurate readings of your temps, fan speeds, etc., rather than relying on your sense of touch or sound. A forum member has posted a copy of iStat Pro that has been "tweaked" to enhance compatibility with Mountain Lion. You can download it here.
    The Intel processors used in Macs are designed to automatically shut down to prevent damage if they truly overheat. CPU Tjmax = 105C (221F), GPU Tjmax = 100C (212F) on i3, i5, i7 processors. (Source: Intel)
    Unless there is a rare defect in a Mac, most temps are well within the normal operating range, considering the workload being put on it. Websites with Flash content, games and other multimedia apps will put higher demand on the CPU/GPU, generating more heat. This is normal. If you're constantly putting high demands on your system, such as gaming or other multimedia tasks, expect temps to rise and fans to spin up accordingly. It's just your Mac doing its job to maintain temps within the normal range.
    It is also quite normal for your Mac to become extremely hot to the touch during intensive operations. The aluminum body transfers heat more effectively than other materials used in computer casings, so you will feel the heat more. This doesn't indicate that it's overheating and will not harm the computer to be hot to the touch.
    Your fans are always on when your Mac is on, spinning at a minimum of 2000 rpm (for MBPs) or 1800 rpm (for MBAs, MBs and minis), or 1200 for the newest MBAs. Older iMacs have 3 fans with minimum speeds in the 800-1200 range, while the newest iMacs have a single fan, spinning at a minimum of about 1400 rpm. They will spin faster as needed to keep temps at a safe level. If your fans are spinning up without increased heat, try resetting the SMC. (PRAM/NVRAM has nothing to do with these issues, so resetting it will not help.)
    The intake and exhaust vents are in the back of the computer near the hinge on all Mac notebooks (except the new MBP with retina display, which has intake vents along the sides at the bottom). The iMac vent is a slot on the back near the top of the computer. Make sure the vents remain unblocked to allow your computer to perform at its best. For Flash-related issues:
  4. shahrezsyed thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 1, 2011
    Stony Brook, New York
    Here's the screenshot. Thanks a lot for the detailed response...
    And even though my CPU is heating up and that is quite obviously the source of the fans spinning on high speed, I did try resetting the SMC to no avail.

    Attached Files:

  5. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    The parental controls process is consuming CPU resources. You can force quit the process, then delete the files in
    /Library/Application Support/Apple/ParentalControls​
  6. shahrezsyed thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 1, 2011
    Stony Brook, New York

    Temperature 57 degrees and dropping! CPU 87% Idle
  7. Mrbobb macrumors 601

    Aug 27, 2012
    Boy, parental controls are pain in the tushy, say my kids. :D

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