What temperature should your CPU be? Low, Intermediate, and High

CPU temperature range- A CPU’s temperature is something that we should watch out for. Like everything else, if the CPU exceeds a specific temperature, then it will start causing problems.

Problems like auto-shutdown, hanging or freezing completely, or component damage can happen if a CPU is kept at a high temperature for too long.

To avoid all the problems or keep a healthy CPU, one must know how to check the CPU’s temperature and keep it maintained.

So, here are the CPU temperature rages that you will need to keep in mind, as they will help you to reduce your system’s temperature and improve the performance too.

How to check the temperature of the CPU?

Checking your CPU’s temperature can be very easy. You only need an application that can read the data given by the temperature sensor attached to your CPU. Many applications can perform this task, but the following are the most common ones.

1. HWMonitor


HWMonitor is a free hardware monitoring program that reads PC’s s primary health sensors: voltages, temperatures, fans speed.

You can download it from their official site: https://www.cpuid.com/softwares/hwmonitor.html

After installation, open HWMonitor. You will be presented with all the health information about the component of your computer, including your CPU.

2. Core Temp

Core Temp is another free program that can display all the vital information about the CPU. It allows users to check the temperature fluctuations in real-time.


AIDA64 is a free application that can provide detailed information about the computer component. It reads the sensors in real-time, allowing it to gather accurate voltage, temperature, and fan speed readings.

Its diagnostic feature will help you to detect and prevent any hardware issues. With the application being compatible with almost every operating system, AIDA64 has become a unique CPU monitor among other applications.

CPU Temperature Range- Low, Intermediate, and High

A CPU’s temperature can be different under different circumstances. Therefore, to understand it better, we have divided it into three stages.

The First Low stage, it’s where the CPU is idle, in other words when no programs are running, or any specific task is happening, the temperature should be anything around 48°C to 52°C (120°F to 126°F).

Intermediate stage, when the CPU is under load, like playing games, running any heavy applications, rendering graphics, or multitasking, the CPU might heat up. Still, you should be fine if it’s anything under 80°C (176°F).

The high stage or critical stage is when the CPU heats up and reaches 95°C (203°F). Anything above this value will cause the CPU to throttle, meaning it will start slowing down or shut down automatically.

NOTE: The above values are compatible with desktops; if you use laptops and especially slimmer ones, they might heat up faster. In which case, the values differ as mentioned below:

Low: 54°C to 60°C (130°F to 140°F)

Average: 82°C to 87°C (180°F to 190°F)

High: 95°C or Higher (203°F or Higher)

Causes of CPU overheat and solution

Your computer can overheat if you ignore the following points:

Poor Airflow

Suppose the ventilation system of the computer is blocked due to its position or dust accumulation. It can cause the hot air to accumulate inside the computer, becoming the significant reason for overheating. Ensure the passage of ventilation is open, and then fans are enough to keep the system cool.

Heat-Emitting Component

There are components inside the CPU that can emit heat during normal usage. Among which power supply and CPU are on top-list. Again, a proper ventilation system is enough to keep the system cool.

Dust Accumulation

Dust can block the passage of the vent and buildup inside the internal component, which can help overheat the computer. To avoid this problem, make sure to clean or blow the dust away regularly.

Insufficient fan cooler

All the computers come with a preset cooling fan. But in some computers, especially in laptops, the fan can be small, which is not sufficient to keep the whole computer cool. You can replace the fan by yourself or take it to a service provider, or you can buy an external cooling pad for your laptops.

By the way, if you are searching for cooling fans then I would recommend you to buy Cooler Master Hyper 212 and N NZXT Kraken Z-3. Whereas Cooler Master Hyper 212 is way easy to get and is quite affordable, N NZXT Kraken Z-3 performs way better but is premium in price.

Fix the causes of an overheat of your CPU

Always use sufficient numbers of cooling fans, try to build your system in the most ventilated manner possible.

Try to use radiators to reduce the temperature and make sure you have placed it either on the top or front. The top is the most recommend position to place your radiator, as it is the most air-ventilated position for your system.

Please make sure when was the last time you applied your thermal paste. It is recommended to change thermal paste after a year or two. Replacing your old thermal paste can make a huge difference in your CPU temperature.

Remove all those dust from your system. In case, if you have placed your CPU on the floor then I would recommend you personally to place it on your table or someplace high from the ground. As placing CPU on the floor makes it to intake dust in the highest quantity.

How to monitor CPU temperature using an on-screen display?

msi burner
MSI burner

You have noticed for most of the time while using any third-party application or game you there is absolutely no option to show the CPU temperature.

This causes damage to your CPU, as you won’t know when your system is heated up. To solve such problems, there are some applications that can help you to kick those problems.

MSI Afterburner: was originally developed to overclock GPU for gaming however, it can be also used to show the specific ratings of CPU or even GPU temperature.

Perform the installation, go to Settings> Monitoring tab >CPUI Temperature > Show in On-Screen Display.

Conclusion of CPU temperature range

In conclusion, it’s essential to keep a check-up on the cooling system of your computer. Because it can create big problems like the malfunctioning of the components or shutdown of the whole system, which can make you replace the parts or even your entire system. So, always keep your CPU Temperature in the required range and stay safe. Thanks for reading; if this article was helpful for you, please make sure to share it with your friends.

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