It’s a normal temperature under load, but it’s definitely on the higher side and we recommend trying to fix any issues that could be causing the GPU to reach this temperature, so you might be interested in checking out our free GPU cooling guide.
It’s pretty comprehensive and covers most of what you’re asking here (though not exactly).The short version goes like this:
Yes, running at high temperatures can damage your GPU; but if you have adequate ventilation it should be fine to keep the temperature below 90°C with good airflow.
GPUs generate a lot of heat when in operation, making them unsuitable for sitting right next to an open fire or stove or anywhere with poor airflow for long periods of time.
Let’s also assume that your rig has been working great until recently. You haven’t changed anything major on the hardware side, but somehow it looks like you’re getting hotter than ever. What could be causing this?
Well, it may sound strange, but the problem could actually come down to something very simple: dust buildup on your cooling fins.
Anyone who has ever tried to clean their computer case knows that dust builds up over time. When dust builds up on your cooler, its surface area increases significantly.
With greater surface area comes greater thermal resistance – meaning less efficient transfer of heat energy away from your GPU core. And since GPUs require a lot of power, even small amounts of waste can quickly become major problems.
This creates two conditions:
1) Temperature rises faster than normal.
2) wasted energy due to inefficient cooling.
So how do you fix it?
Simple: make it dust-free!
How do I know if my GPU is getting hot?
Most modern laptops have built-in sensors specifically for monitoring the temperature of internal components. However, on desktops you usually have no idea whether the processor or GPU itself is hot or not.
A quick way to test this is to hold your hand against the chip while watching for any changes in skin color. Another option is to install a program called Core Temp, which allows you to monitor multiple CPUs at once.
Once you’ve completed one of these steps, write down what measurements you get. They should correspond approximately to the ambient temperature at room temperature.
What causes thermal throttling?
Thermal throttling occurs when excess waste heat builds up in the GPU core, causing a sudden drop in temperature.
This happens because the voltage supplied to the GPU is lowered, forcing the core to work harder to remain stable. Unfortunately, the solution to this is rather difficult: lowering the voltage wastes electricity, which leads us back to the whole process of temperature rise. Also, lowering voltages lowers performance, which is undesirable.
Finally, the voltage required for today’s high-end products is extremely accurate, meaning lower voltages are impractical.
Is overclocking likely to make the situation worse?
Yes, overclocked processors tend to produce more waste heat. You don’t need to worry too much about this though, as modern chips already use advanced mechanisms designed to prevent overheating.
Overclocking occurs during the first tests anyway, so it’s easy to avoid. Plus, having faster speeds doesn’t mean you have to use them longer — simply put, if your CPU is using more than 75% while idle, you’d still be fine.
If you’re looking for more information, visit our dedicated GPU overclocking section.
There you will learn everything about adjusting settings, solving errors and preventing potential risks.
Since this topic is quite broad, we recommend that you take a look at it once you’ve learned the basics behind overclocking.
So, to summarize, yes 80 degrees Celsius is a bit warm for a GPU. How did this happen? Unfortunately, there aren’t really many reasons why this could be happening.
Most often, it comes down to dust buildup on heat sinks, leading to poor heat dissipation.
Fortunately, this is easily resolved with regular maintenance and care.
If you suspect that your GPU has been damaged by excessive heat, it is best to consult a professional technician.