Ventilation Question on 2007 MBP

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by steiney, Jan 10, 2013.

  1. steiney macrumors 6502

    Nov 6, 2009
    Hello All!

    I have a 2007 MBP (the non-unibody type). I have recently started using a program that allows the computer to remain awake when the lid is closed.

    My question is: will long term use of the computer with the lid closed cause any problems related to a lack of ventilation? It seems like the air intake gets at least somewhat obstructed when the lid is closed.

    If anyone has any insight into this, I would be glad to hear it.

    Thanks in advance,

  2. ezramoore macrumors 6502a

    Mar 20, 2006
    Washington State
    A simple USB keyboard will awaken the MBP from sleep while the clamshell is closed, it is a sanctioned mode of operation.

    It does restrict airflow, and you will find that the machine gets warmer to the touch.

    Try to keep it on a hard surface so that it can get the best ventilation possible, and if it were me, I would install SMCFanControl and bump the fan speed up a bit.

    Be aware that those MBPs tend to chew through their internal fans (the bearings seem the be the culprit), so by running it closed (which will cause the fans to run higher more frequently do the the extra heat) and by using software to increase the fan speed you should be prepared to replace them. They are not expensive.
  3. duervo macrumors 68020


    Feb 5, 2011
    Your fans will fail sooner, because they will have to work harder to intake/exhaust air in/out of the system.

    The amount of surface area that exposed will be reduced as well, further reducing the ability of the case itself to dissipate heat.

    Other than that, I think you'll be fine, as long as you keep an eye on those fans. Maybe setup a scheduled job to check the CPU/GPU temps or fan RPM's every minute or two, and have it email you if it gets past a certain threshold wouldn't be a bad idea, but I would probably just keep an eye on it manually.

    I wouldn't leave it like that for more than a few hours unattended, either (like if you go out of town.) If you go out of town, it's probably a good idea to shut it off.
  4. steiney thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 6, 2009
    Thank you both for your help!


    I actually do have SMCFanControl running currently with the fans always at max speed just to help keep the processor as cool as possible. My MBP is pretty old and needs all the help it can get. I've had the fans running at full speed for several months now with no problems.

    My plan is to get an external monitor, keyboard and mouse and keep that at my office. When I'm at home, I like just using the laptop, but at work it would really help my productivity to have a large monitor, but of course the laptop will get in the way of the monitor unless I close it, put it out of the way and use a wireless keyboard and mouse. I think I'll get a vertical holder for the MBP so the bottom of the case has good ventilation.


    Thanks for the heads up. I'll keep an eye on the fans. I'm not sure how I would set up a scheduled job, other than just creating a recurring calendar appointment in Google Calendar. That should do the trick though.
  5. duervo, Jan 10, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2013

    duervo macrumors 68020


    Feb 5, 2011
    Ok, no worries. Forget about the scheduled job. I was referring to using the "crontab -e" command (from command-line with the Terminal app) to schedule the job to run every minute. You have to write the script as well.

    Looks like it might be too technical for you, so it's probably safest to just ignore that suggestion.

    Re-applying thermal paste might help things too, since you're already running the fans at full speed just to keep the CPU from overheating with normal tasks. Here is a guide on how to do it for a 15" rMBP, to give you an idea of the process involved (it may or may not be up your alley, depending on how comfortable you with working on the insides of your system.)
  6. steiney thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 6, 2009
    Oh, I wasn't aware of the terminal command. And I know nothing about writing scripts, although I'm in the process of learning HTML right now and Javascript is on my list after CSS, so I guess I'll figure out the scripts thing soon enough.

    I've thought about reapplying the thermal paste several times, but every time I watch the how to video I end up talking myself out of it because of the hassle and the fact that my Mac doesn't run slow (to me) unless I push it pretty hard. Right now I've got a bunch of resource intensive apps and there's a little lag, but it doesn't crash or freeze up. The only program that really locks up my computer is VMWare Fusion.

Share This Page