Turns out that there have been a considerable number of reports complaining about severe heat problems. By far, the i7 models of the Surface Pro 3 have garnered the most complaints.
In a growing thread on in the Microsoft Surface forums there are tales of problems with the latest version of the Surface Pro tablet released earlier this month.
Surface Pro 3 Heating Problem: What Models Are Affected?
While the i3 version of the SP3 can get fairly warm, the i7 models, and the occasional i5 model, seem to be suffering the excessive heat problem.
Worse yet, the problem seems to happen even when the machine isn’t being taxed very much.
According to some posters on the thread, even low intensity activities surfing the net, posting on Facebook, watching YouTube, or applying a new firmware update can cause the tablet to get hot and spin up the fans to top speed.
In some cases, the tablet will suddenly shutdown with a temperature warning screen with some of those folks reporting that, after the tablet cools down and can be restarted, pixels on the screen are burned out (presumably due to the heat).
The thread details how users have exchanged overheating units, only to experience the same issue with the replacement. Some are claiming to be on their third and fourth Surface Pro 3.
Surface Pro 3 Heating Problem: What Can Be Done About It?
The short answer is: not much. It doesn’t seem like there’s any particular activity or program causing the heat issues so, it’s not like you can just avoid doing something.
If your Surface Pro 3 isn’t having a heating problem as soon as you get it, then you probably don’t need to worry about it.
At the time of this writing, there are 59 reports in the thread. I broke down the report by model and batch to produce the following tables:
|Affected Tablets by Model|
|Affected Tablets by Lot#|
As you can see from the data, the i7 models account for the lions share of the reported issues.
In addition, lot# 1429 seems to be the most problematic. That indicates that, perhaps, lot 1429 was just a “bad batch” during which some kind of manufacturing flaw happened and nothing is inherently wrong with the Surface design.
So, if you’re experiencing heat issues on your Surface Pro 3 (any version) you might want to post your information on the thread as it will help Microsoft better isolate (and eventually correct) the problem.
What do you think?
Tim Rolston is a professional geek with over 23 years of experience working in Information Technology and dealing with everything from large-scale storage to remote systems management and automation for organizations such as Texas Instruments, Mobil Oil, and the University of Michigan (where he was an Academic IT Director).
He co-founded JTRTech along with Joanna to realize his long-time dream of working for himself.