late 2007 macbook pro gets really hot at the bottom?....

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by tggalindo, May 5, 2014.

  1. tggalindo macrumors member

    Apr 8, 2014
    Recently got a late model 2007 2.2ghz, 2gb 15inch macbook pro, its my first experience with these laptops, and right away I installed fresh mavericks.

    Is it normal for these models to get really hot at the bottom of laptop? I can understand it can get hot but seems like the fans dont ramp up in speed when it gets really hot, its still really quiet. Is there a program to install to first see if both fans are working and then isn't there a sensor that tells the fans to go faster when temps reaches a temp? how would you know if the sensors works? thanks
  2. Barney63, May 5, 2014
    Last edited: May 5, 2014

    Barney63 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 9, 2014
    Bolton, UK.
    There are two programs that I personally use, iStat Pro (free) and iStat Menus ($16 but free for 14 days).
    Both of these will show fan speeds and temperatures.

  3. cruzmisl macrumors regular

    Nov 10, 2012
    These models got really hot on the bottom side. Place a book underneath for some protection to your skin.

    I also think with the release of the Intel macs, Apple fully discontinued use of the "laptop" term, heh.
  4. thundersteele macrumors 68030

    Oct 19, 2011
    It is normal for these machines to get rather warm even with simple tasks like streaming videos. However I'm surprised that you don't hear the fans spinning up. Use one of the programs Barney suggested to be sure that the fans are running and properly spin up when the system is under load.

    PS: Note that temperatures around 90 C are normal under heavy load, and not sign of a malfunction.
  5. ChicagoJoe macrumors newbie

    May 7, 2014
    I also have a late 2007 MBP and have the same problem.
    Last year I swapped the HD for an SSD and it was worth every penny. Now my daughter has 'her own' computer and the performance for light work is great.
    Unfortunately, she looooves YouTube and flash games and the CPU and fan kick into high gear after a few minutes. I'm embarking on comparing running YoutTube with HTML5 vs Flash to see the impact. Hopefully, HTML5 is less cpu intensive and I can save on some heat that way.

    Between the SSD, and either smcFanControl or Fan Control.prefPane (runs in 32bit mode) and running YouTube in HTML5 (go to to change) I have reduced the heat and have more control over the fans. But, there's still more you can do outside your laptop to help dissipate heat. Laptop cooling pads (the textured ones that contain a heat-reactive crystal substance) help some, fan-powered ones are even better.
  6. Essenar macrumors 6502a

    Oct 24, 2008
    It's a 7 year old machine. What happens to a computer's fans after 7 years?

    For one, in order for air to come out, air must come in. Does ONLY air come in? Not really. Air is dirty and at stagnation points, particles and dust will start to accumulate. Dust is also slightly sticky compared to smooth plastic so more dust will hit dust and eventually, you have dust forming a layer around the heatsink exit fins.

    Thermal paste also dries up and starts to crack. Its thermal resistance lowers and its thermal conduction properties increase. Hot stays hot and sends hot to the valued components.

    One of the first steps to reconditioning a laptop that's been used for 7 years is to open it up, clean out the fans and reapply thermal paste. It's not a difficult process and it can be done in under 2 hours. The results will be very rewarding.

    You can follow the Logic Board removal process here:

    Use a Thermal Paste like Arctic Silver 5 or Formula 7 Nano Diamond. I recommend Isopropyl Alcohol and microfiber cloths to clean the board of dust and gunk build up. The bearings on the fans might be worn down, I would consider replacing the fans altogether.

    Also, just because ram hasn't been broken doesn't mean it runs as fast as it did when it was new. I would consider swapping out the hard drive for a newer hard drive. The mechanical moving parts inside a hard drive get worn down after a while. The needle doesn't move as fast, the disks don't spin as freely. Using a mechanical drive after 7 years of service is a death warrant.

    I would say a few hours of cleaning up and a few part replacements and your machine will be running as good as new!
  7. ChicagoJoe macrumors newbie

    May 7, 2014
    Having replaced a fan in mine about two years ago, I can say that Step 8 of that process Essenar links to (removing the keyboard assembly) is no trivial matter -- very easy to bend or break something. If it's your first time, you don't really know where to pull and with how much force: very easy to break a clip on the bottom of the keyboard or bend the aluminum (or aluminium, if you prefer) clips on the chassis. If the fan is not actually broken (or sounding like it is), and the temperature at higher fan speeds is still in the 'normal' range, I wouldn't recommend going through something like this.

    However, if you are a tinkerer and you are considering doing the HDD swap with a SSD (which would definitely give a big boost in performance for anything affected by disk I/O which, due to paging, is quite a bit) I highly recommend that. How much difference does it make? There's several examples on youtube. And, if you are going to do that, then you might as well clean the fans and maybe replace the thermal paste/grease. I used an SSD drive about a third of the size as the original 5400RPM one that was in it since it's really only my daughter using it and there's a lot more network storage (google drive, dropbox, etc.) than there used to be.

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