How To Know If A Processor Is Failing And How To Fix It?

Last updated Aug 15, 2020

With the emergence of technology, the lifestyle of people has changed drastically. From PC to laptop, the transition happened smoothly, however, it did not take much time to transition from the suitcase sized laptops to the sleek ones that we have today. All that said, the fundamental issues of a computer remain the same. People face multiple issues with their laptops, be it overheating, motherboard malfunctioning or even a serious issue with the processor itself.

Due to regular and excessive laptop usage, we often land up having these issues with our systems. Processor issues are most common and it can play a villain by crashing your laptop, especially when you are working on something very important. So how can you fix this?

To fix an issue, you need to understand what is causing the issue in the first place, so here are some ways on how to spot if a processor is failing. I have also brought out some possible solutions to fix it.

Processor failure signs

If you start noticing weird freezing or blue screens of death in windows or slow system performance then it is possible you might be experiencing a case of processor breakdown. But to assess that we need to do an evaluation to filter out any false positives.

Boot up issues

The first step to check if you are having any problems regarding the processor is by booting your laptop or desktop. If you turn on the power button and you get no beeps, then it means your device has failed the POST test.

To confirm this failure, you can open the back panel of your laptop or your desktop casing and check the LEDs of your CPU when you press the power button. If these LEDs light up but fail the POST test then this indicates a dead or dying processor.

Sudden Shutdowns

When there is excessive load on the processor it will generate immense heat. To overcome this problem the manufacturer has installed heat sensors to detect overheating. And it will automatically shut down your system when the temperature of the system rises at unacceptable levels, this is a sign of failure of the processor and these shutdowns help prevent any further damage to your hardware.

To resolve this problem, you need to check for the heatsink thermal paste, and check if it has degraded or not. Applying fresh thermal paste can help a lot in cooling down a few degrees. Boot Up your laptop and check if this resolves your problem.

Lags and freezing

If you are noticing weird freezing/lags while using your laptop and if there is irregular keyboard input lag, then it might be signs of your CPU giving up. You can restart your laptop or desktop to resolve this issue. However, if this issue persists, then you can be sure this is a processor related problem.

BSOD issues

This problem is a nightmare to deal with, also known as ‘Windows stop error’ The blue screen of death indicates a serious hardware or software failure, it can be caused by various reasons and one of the reasons is General protection faults which imply signs of a dying processor.

However, a BSOD issue might be a sign of a bad driver or unstable software crashing your laptop or PC, but you need to look for the error message with a specific code that looks like (0x00000x00000x000000x0000000), which roughly translates to a fault in your Central processing unit. To confirm it you can take a snap on your phone or write it down and google the error code for its meaning and solutions.

Now that you know what are signs of a dead processor, let’s take a look at reasons why it is caused and how to fix it

Excessive heat

Heat is the main culprit for hardware degradation and it can reduce the lifespan of a component. Although newer models of laptops tend to have heat sensors and protection to prevent these problems, there are still exceptions where overheating can damage your sensitive parts such as the CPU. Oftentimes the level of heat rises to extreme temperatures of 80 Fahrenheit which can cause irreversible damage to your CPU.


A good cooling system can minimize the overheating process, also you can use third-party software to monitor your temperature levels which might help you in this situation.

Overclocking unstable values

Sometimes users want to get a boost in their games and they change the default values of the processor without having any proper guidance or any previous experience while doing so. These changes of values are called overclocking which can cause instability and in the worst case, irreparable permanent damage


Although any damage due to overclocking is rare yet it is proven physically hazardous and the solution for this is simple all you have to do is revert the values back to default settings to prevent this.

Power inconsistency

Electrical failure is the number 1 cause of any hardware failure, and for a dying processor, it is no different. Electrical inconsistency and power surges can fry your Central processing unit or even cause a fire hazard which can harm you too. And in the best-case scenario it can do minimum damage of frying your power supply.


Never Charge your laptop if you notice poor power conductive, use the original cable that came with your laptop. If you notice any electrical inconsistency plug of any cord and turn off your laptop to prevent any further damage.

Bad Motherboard

A CPU or processor is soldered or mounted onto a motherboard while holding all the components together to carry out communication of data. But in some cases, due to electrical surges or overheating the capacitor or silicon transistors present on it usually leaks out which can be identified by discoloration of the motherboard, this results in the motherboard going bad and that impacts a CPU into abrupt failure.


There is no easy way around this problem and in the best-case scenario, you have to take it to a local repair shop to get it fixed. In the worst-case scenario you have to get the whole motherboard replaced.


So that you now know how to spot a failing processor and how to fix it, you will be able to resolve these problems confidently. I hope this article has been helpful to you. Be advised this is a lengthy process and patience is a virtue when dealing with sensitive problems like these.

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