Monday, February 3, 2020

MacBook Pro 16 Has a Fan Problem

Om Malik (Hacker News):

Every time I awake the device from its slumber, within just a few minutes, the fans come on. And they stay on. The noise they make is very loud, especially in my quiet living room, where I usually work. I am not the only one with this problem. There are multiple comments on this thread on Apple’s message boards, where longtime Apple users are screaming in frustration. It is a problem that is big enough to merit its own complaint thread on Macrumors.

Some mention that external monitors make the fans go wild. Well, this $7,000 Apple xPro Display on loan from Apple is supposed to showcase the marital bliss between MacBook Pro 16 and the new screen. Oops! […] Some suggest an SMC reset. I did that but to no avail.


Earlier this morning, the problem really got my goat. I had only three applications running on the machine: Apple Mail, Apple Messages, and Apple Safari. All native Apple apps, and yet, the fans were running like afterburners on Dom Toretto’s 1970 Dodge Charger.

I’m using a 16-inch MacBook Pro without an external display and have not seen this problem. However, sometimes there is a short burst of very loud fan activity when powering on the Mac. This also happened with previous MacBook Pros.


5 Comments RSS · Twitter

Short fan bursts after power-on usually means there was a kernel panic or some sort of system error before. (At least that's how it is on my MBP.)

I have one of the new 16” MacBook Pros... and it’s usually hooked up to two 5k LG monitors in clamshell mode. Despite dozens of windows open, actively using several of them... I haven’t had a problem with the fans or temps. When I first got it, at one point it started randomly having the fans spin up, even after shutting down all GUI apps. top showed “securityd” consuming 100% of a core, A kill -9 and reboot solved that, and the problem has not reoccurred. I wonder if the other people having temp issues don’t have a runaway daemon of some sort causing it.

I'm running 16" with one 5k LG and in clamshell WindowServer takes about 5-6% cpu and running with the lid open WindowServer consumes about 13-19%! I'm not running in clamshell as my last macbook pro ended up with a bright spot just above where the cpu or gpu is.

Latest macOS update 10.15.4 seems to have fixed these issue for me now

I was chasing this problem today on my brand new laptop and my fix was an errant component of FaceTime/WiFi calling: CommCenter was using 139% driving my fans crazy and eating my battery even while plugged in. turning off all connections in FaceTime and now I'm back to driving two external monitors, no fans and battery at 100%.

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