Home » macOS » 7 Fixes for an Overheating MacBook Air M1

7 Fixes for an Overheating MacBook Air M1

by Kanika Modi
0 comment

Do you know your MacBook Air M1 has no active cooling system like a fan? MacBook is designed to be energy-efficient, generating little heat. However, it still overheats and gets pretty hot sometimes, mainly due to intensive tasks or workload. Moreover, MacBook Air’s overall thin and compact design gives it less space to dissipate heat leading to overheating. We have created a list of all the measures and methods to fix an overheating MacBook Air M1.

1. Reduce Multitasking

You need to reduce some of the load on your MacBook Air. Even though it is a highly efficient system, multitasking and working on multiple software simultaneously can overheat the MacBook.

The best way is to close those unused browser tabs and inactive software you may not currently need to work on. For example, look at the number of apps open on your system currently in the dock. If it looks something like this, you need to close a few of them to let your Mac take a breather.

Not all apps are made equal. Some apps are heavy and require more system resources like Steam and image editors like Photoshop.

2. Check Background Processes

If closing down resource-intensive apps does not solve your MacBook Air M1’s overheating issue, the problem might lie with an app or background process consuming maximum CPU power.

With the help of Activity Monitor, let’s evaluate the processes that might be causing the MacBook Air M to overheat.

1. Press Command + Space on the keyboard to open Spotlight Search.

2. Type Activity in the search box and open Activity Monitor.

3. Click on CPU at the top menu bar.

4. Check the %CPU column to see the resource-intensive processes.

The list could also consist of background activities that are responsible for running the system smoothly. Hence, make sure you do not close those processes. A good rule of thumb is that if you do not recognize an app or process or understand what it does, better leave it alone.

5. Check the Energy tab.

A;so check the Memory tab on the menu bar as well.

Once you have analyzed all these aspects, you can then select the processes that are taking up the maximum power, energy, or memory and quit the process.

6. Click on the process and choose the (x) at the top.

7. Select Quit to stop the process.

Now, close the Activity Monitor and wait some time to see if the system cools down.

3. Reset the SMC

The SMC or System Management Controller is responsible for power and thermal management on your MacBook Air. Hence, resetting the SMC might help if you’re experiencing temperature-related issues.

Here is how you can do it.

Considering your MacBook Air M1 is heating and this is an Apple-silicon chip Mac, you simply need to restart the system. If unsure, we have a guide to help you find out your MacBook’s system specs in no time.

1. Go to the Apple menu at the top-left corner of your desktop.

2. In the drop-down menu, choose Shut Down.

Keep the lid closed and the system shut down for at least 30 seconds. Click on the Power button again to start the system

4. Update macOS

Apple frequently releases updates that include performance and thermal management improvements. Hence, you need to ensure that your macOS is updated.

If you are not sure, follow the steps below to check and update the system.

Make sure to save all your work before proceeding with the update.

1. Go to the Apple Menu at the top-left corner of your desktop.

2. Click on System Settings.

3. Go to General on the left sidebar.

4. Click on Software Update on the right.

5. Wait for the system to check for any updates.

6. Choose Update Now.

Mac will now begin updating and restart to save all the changes made to it. Wait for the process to complete, and then start getting back to work.

5. External Cooling

If none of the above methods seems to be working for you, you can try external cooling. Well, firstly, make sure the environment around you isn’t too hot or other devices on the table are not making the system hot.

Since the MacBook Air M1 has a fanless design without any cooling vents, it relies on a passive cooling design. MacBook Air uses a passive cooling design radiating the heat away using a heatsink inside.

Although you cannot directly improve the airflow, an external cooling pad might still be helpful in certain situations. The cooling pad can keep the surface underneath your MacBook Air cooler, which can indirectly help dissipate some of the heat the device generates.

6. Remove Case/Cover

A lot depends on the design and the material of the case or cover you use. If the case or cover is made of materials that are poor conductors of heat, it can trap heat inside the MacBook. Hence, it is best to remove the case and cover to check if that is causing your MacBook Air to overheat.

7. Contact Apple Support

If nothing seems to be working for you, it is high time that you take your Mac to a certified service center. You can also chat with the customer support executive via live chat and explain all your issues to them.

I have had several issues with our Apple products, and Apple online customer support has been successful in helping out every step of the way.

Keep it Cool!

Overheating issues on MacBook Air M1 are common, but you can fix it easily. All you have to do is simply close down tens of tabs and apps you have been using simultaneously.

However, if nothing works for you, take your MacBook to an Apple service center to check for any internal hardware issues, such as your battery. 

You may also like