Does a Mac Mini turn off when it overheats?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by LincolnsiPod, Apr 27, 2014.

  1. LincolnsiPod macrumors 6502a

    Nov 20, 2009
    My parents' Mac Mini 2011 suddenly switched off yesterday, then today it switched off again and they were unable to turn it on. No light, no power, like it's not even plugged in.

    I initially tried to turn it on with no success, so I opened the chasis and did some major scrubbing to get rid of all the dust. Plugged it back in and now it turns on just fine.

    One thing is that I never liked how hot it got, and it was stashed in a cupboard space with no ventilation, so I'm thinking maybe it was a combination of dust buildup and lack of ventilation that eventually caused it to suddenly turn off like that. To resolve it, I moved the Mini to an open desk with PLENTY of ventilation and space to dissipate heat. Now after a few hours of use, it is mild to the touch whereas before it used to run pretty hot.

    Could that have been all it was? I thought it might have been the power supply or logic board failing because it wouldn't even turn on, but maybe not if this holds. I did another backup via Time Machine just in case though.
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    Yes, Macs in general, and other computers too, turn off to prevent overheating when becoming too hot.

    And as you discovered, dust and a closed space is not ideal for a computer.
  3. LincolnsiPod thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Nov 20, 2009
    Thanks for confirming.
  4. ollieoldenburg macrumors newbie

    Jun 13, 2014

    So, if it overheats, running hot and shutting itself down, this is caused by ....?

    Mine does this, especially when my children are playing games.
    Installed the smsFanControl, but it keeps running hot.

    I think the fan is not working at all, I never hear it - so just now I opened the bottom from the mini, the fan does not seem to be running....:(

    Is a fan easiliy replaced?

    Kind Regards from the Netherlands

  5. LincolnsiPod thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Nov 20, 2009
    It does run very quiet, but the Mac Mini needs a lot of ventilation. The culprit in my case turned out to be the power supply, which was fizzling out. I think it was due to the Mini being stored on a bookshelf with very little ventilation, so it wound up burning out prematurely. Now I keep it on top of the desk with plenty of air around it and it runs warm to the touch rather than the "almost too hot to the touch" it used to be before.
  6. ollieoldenburg macrumors newbie

    Jun 13, 2014
    Thanks for that quick reply .... :)

    However, mine sits on the desktop, with plenty of air around (....)

    I have it now running lying flipped over, bottom unscrewed, and the fan is visually NOT working.

    Think I'll take it to a shop if I can find one somewhere ...

    Thanx again!
  7. hfg macrumors 68040


    Dec 1, 2006
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    I believe I purchased a exact replacement fan on eBay after I broke the fragile fan connector during a disk upgrade. Seems like it was $15 or so.

  8. ollieoldenburg macrumors newbie

    Jun 13, 2014
    You guys ...

    Especially for this problem I joined forces here yesterday, and I got exactly the help I neede so far (and believe me, I've looked around on the web!).

    So, I'm going to order a new fan for my A 1347 ;-)

    I'll let you know if this solved the problem once it is installed!

    Regards, Ollie
  9. neilly500 macrumors newbie

    Mar 21, 2014
    mac mini heating

    quite a few customers use mac minis in our custom datacentre (CoLocker) The general operating temp should be that they are warm to touch not hot. We have found that vacuuming fans and inlets helps a lot with the few that have run hot...Of course we then ensure that cool air is running all around them. In our experience if they run very hot for an extended perion they tend to fail earlier...
  10. brdeveloper macrumors 68020


    Apr 21, 2010
    Are you talking about the 2011 Mini with i7 + Radeon GPU? If so, it seems to be a really hot combination for a Mini... or even Macbooks or iMacs. Radeons are made to melt everything around.

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