How to Check CPU Temp Step-by-Step

Published: Last Updated on Fact checked by Chris Smith
How to Check CPU Temp

Is your computer starting to act sluggish of late or spontaneously shut down during heavy tasks? There’s a possibility it’s starting to overheat. Checking your CPU’s temperature is essential in maintaining optimal performance and guaranteeing a longer lifespan. 

But how can you check the temperature?

You can use a DIY method or third-party software such as Core Temp. To install Core Temp:

  • Download the software on your laptop and run it
  • Uncheck the bundled software on the third page of the installation
  • The software’s icon will appear on the screen showing your computer’s temperature
  • If the machine has multiple cores, it’ll have multiple icons, each showing the temperature of each core

So, how do you monitor the temperature of your CPU? Read on to learn more. 

How Can I Check the Temperature of my CPU? 

There are various ways that you can check the temperature of your CPU. The difference in the methods depends on whether you’ll use software or not, and it also depends on the type of Windows you’re using. 

How to Check CPU Temp Windows 10 

You can monitor the CPU temperature on Windows 10 using the following methods:

  • Through BIOS
  • Using applications
  • Using tools provided by the manufacturer

How to Check CPU Temp Windows 10 Without Software

You can ascertain the temperature of your CPU using BIOS since the temperature you see using BIOS when your computer is starting cannot reflect the device’s operating temperature. 

Therefore, it’ll be best to restart your machine and use BIOS after it has been operational for a while. 

To enter BIOS to check the temperature, use the following steps:

  • Restart your device after being operational for a while;
  • When the device displays a black screen, press the Delete key sever times to enter the BIOS; If the method doesn’t help to enter BIOS, refer to your computer’s user manual
  • When the BIOS interface opens, you can see various hardware details, including your computer’s CPU temperature.

How to Check CPU Temp Windows 10 Without Software using BIOS

Checking the CPU Temperature Using Applications

Using applications is the fastest way of checking the CPU temperature on Windows 10. Some of the applications you can use to monitor temperature include Open Hardware Monitor and GPU-Z

GPU-Z occupies limited space on your device and has a clear and easy-to-understand interface. Open the app and click the “Senors” tab to see the real-time temperature. 

Checking the CPU Temperature Using Applications

On the other hand, the Open Hardware Monitor is an open-source application that enables you to monitor fan speeds, voltages, and temperature sensors. 

You can monitor the CPU temperature by reading the core temperature sensors of AMD and Intel processors. You can see the monitored values in the main menu of a customized desktop device or the system tray. 

The applications show the real-time CPU temperature and max temperature.

Open Hardware Monitor

Using Tools Provided by Manufacturers    

Manufacturers offer various tools for checking the temperature. You should start by searching the motherboard model on the owner’s website. 

Use the following steps to use the tools. 

  1. Use the command prompt to check the motherboards model. Press Windows key + R, type “CMD,” and press “Enter.”
  2. Search for the manufacturer tools on the official website. Go to the site’s details page and click “Support” to find the tools.
  3. Download the tools to help you check the CPU temperature. Download and install the tool and use it to check the CPU temperature

motherboard model on the owner’s website

How to Check CPU Temperature On Windows 11

Like Windows 10, you can check the CPU temperature in Windows 11 by going to the BIOS or using applications. 

If you want to check the CPU temperature without using software, use BIOS. It’s also a perfect pick if you’re avoiding using third-party apps.  

Checking the Temperature using BIOS 

You can check the manufacturer’s official website for the exact steps. The common steps include:

  1. Press Alt + F4 and go to the dropdown menu on the shutdown window and select “Restart”
  2. Click “Ok” to restart your computer
  3. When the display lights up, press the “Delete” or F12 key to go to the system’s BIOS. Hit the key several times since the OS boots fast
  4. When the BIOS is open, look for CPU or Performance Monitor to see the CPU temperature.

Checking the Temperature using BIOS

Use an App to Check the CPU Temperature

Using a third-party app is also an option to check the CPU temperature on Windows 11. 

An example of an effective and reliable app you can use is Core Temp. So, how can you use Core Temp to check the CPU temperature of your device? 

  1. Start by downloading and installing Core Temp on your device. Visit the Core Temp’s  website and click “Download.”

core temp

2) Next, double-click on the Core Temp file. A User (Account Control UAC) prompt will appear on your screen. Click “Yes” to proceed.

3) When the setup starts, click “Next” and follow the screen instructions on your device to complete the installation process.

core temp wizard

4) Launch the app on your device when the installation process is complete. You can now use the Core Temp app to check the CPU temperature

core temps 17

The Core Temp app is valuable for checking and displaying the CPU temperature on Windows 11. 

It’s easy to install and has an intuitive interface. 

Besides checking the CPU temperature, you can use the app to enable overheat protection. Thus, you safeguard your device’s system from a breakdown if the temperature shoots suddenly. 

How to Check CPU Temp Online

Checking the CPU temp of your device helps you decide the best way to maintain optimal temperature. 

For instance, you can decide the programs to run together, which ones should run alone, etc. 

While there’s no way to check the CPU temp directly online, you have access to multiple apps that you can download online and help you to check the temperatures. 

Such downloadable online apps include:

  • Core Temp
  • Open Hardware Monitor
  • HWMonitor, etc

What’s the Normal CPU Temperature?

Your device’s Central Processing Unit (CPU) is supposed to operate at optimal temperatures to offer the best performance. 

If the CPU processes light tasks, it mainly operates under low temperatures. However, the temperatures rise as the tasks become more demanding and require more power. 

If the temperatures become exceedingly high, you run the risk of some of the components in your machine getting damaged. 

Luckily, most modern CPUs have a built-in thermal protection feature that helps throttle the device’s performance if the temperatures become exceedingly high. Constant extreme temperatures can damage parts of your computer or cause the components to degrade faster than usual.

It’s also not unusual for the computer to shut down unexpectedly when the temperatures become too high.  Different CPUs in the market have varying temperature tolerances; however, most CPUs have an accepted temperature range. 

So, what’s the accepted temperature range for CPUs to perform optimally?

  • If the CPU is running the essential apps, the acceptable temperature range is between 150 to 160 degrees Fahrenheit (65-70 degrees celsius)
  • If the CPU is running intensive software or you’re playing high demanding games, the CPU temperatures can rise to 175 degrees Fahrenheit (80 degrees Celcius)

PCs have more airflow to their components since the components aren’t densely packed. On the other hand, a laptop has limited space, meaning its features are densely packed, limiting airflow. 

As such, laptops are more prone to high temperatures than PCs. If you’re using a laptop, the acceptable temperature range is:

  • 160 to 170 degrees Fahrenheit when the laptop is operating on a low load 
  • If you’re playing high demanding games, the CPU temperature in a laptop can rise to 190 degrees Fahrenheit

Why Does a CPU Overheat?

A CPU can overheat due to numerous reasons, including:

  • If the computer is working on intensive and highly demanding tasks, it’s prone to high temperatures
  • The high ambient temperatures in the room you’re working in can also contribute to high CPU temperatures
  • One of the most common causes of high CPU temperatures is a dirty or damaged CPU cooler. A damaged CPU cooler won’t perform its job, causing a rise in temperatures.
  • Inadequate cooling or airflow can also cause your device’s CPU to overheat

What Can I Do to Reduce CPU Temperature?

If the CPU temperatures shoot up, there’s a likelihood of damaging the device’s components or adversely affecting performance. When the CPU temperatures rise, you can try the following remedies to cool it down:

  • Check if the machine is receiving enough airflow. Ensure you clear any dust or lint build-up that may be blocking the device’s vents;
  • If you’re using a laptop, ensure you place it on a flat table or laptop holder. Using it on an even surface can curtail airflow to the components causing temperatures to rise;
  • Check if the AIO or the CPU fan is functioning correctly. If not, you may have to replace it to keep the temperatures optimal and enjoy the best performances;
  • If you’re working in a room with high temperatures, you might consider increasing the ventilation or using a fan to bring the temperatures down;
  • Additionally, if the device isn’t receiving enough airflow, you can decide to add more fans; 
  • Sometimes, you may have to change the case itself and get one that can allow enhanced airflow and accommodate more fans.


Checking your CPU temperature is an essential maintenance procedure. A hot CPU can affect the performance of your computer and cause damage to components, reducing its lifespan. If you want to check the CPU temperature, you have several options.

For instance, you can check the BIOS or use third-party apps. Most of the apps are free and come with easy-to-use and intuitive interfaces. 

What’s stopping you from checking the CPU temperature of your device? Check the temperature and take necessary action if the temperatures are up to ensure optimal performance.  


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