Why Does Chrome Make My Mac Hot and How to Fix It

It’s no secret that Chrome is one of the most RAM-hungry browsers (evidence). You might not know this, but Chrome can make your Mac hot just by running. Unfortunately, despite being one of the most popular browsers, Google Chrome tends to be poorly optimized for macOS. 

Hi, I’m Andreas, and I have been using Chrome on my Mac for a long time. I’ve experienced many times that Chrome makes my MacBook hot, but I’ve also discovered a few ways to prevent my Mac from overheating.

In this guide, I will tell you how to fix this issue by giving you the best solutions. After that, it’s up to you to decide which one works best in your case. 

So, without wasting too much of your time, let’s start.

Why Is Chrome Making My Mac Hot?

Before I give you the solutions, let’s diagnose the issue. We all know that Google Chrome is a resource-hungry browser. 

Your Mac might be top-of-the-line, but that doesn’t mean you won’t hear the CPU fan working overtime to prevent overheating when using Google Chrome. While it might be down to multiple factors, the issue persists nonetheless.

Chrome uses so many resources from your Mac due to prerendering. Prerendering makes websites load faster by consuming more RAM

Each tab also consumes RAM. So, if you have multiple tabs open, the RAM consumption increases more. While an easy solution might be to close unused tabs, that doesn’t solve the problem.

Another reason why Chrome makes your Mac hot is the extensions. Extensions are a big reason Mac users prefer Chrome over Safari or any other browser. 

Even though other browsers are catching up to Chrome when it comes to extensions, Chrome is currently the best when it comes to installing third-party tools to make your browsing experience better. 

Extensions work in the background, and they consume RAM and CPU power. So, all in all, Chrome is a power-hungry browser. 

If you have an older Mac with less RAM and a less-powerful CPU, opening multiple tabs and downloading extensions can make your Mac hot.  

With all that said, let’s look at how to solve the problem.

How to Fix Mac Overheating from Google Chrome

To solve the problem, you need to find a way to reduce Chrome memory usage. I have both short-term and long-term solutions that will stop the overheating.

Method 1 – Close Unused Tabs

This first method is a short-term solution and one that gets the job done. When you’re not using your Mac for ongoing work, the best thing you can do is to close unused tabs. 

The fewer tabs open, the fewer resources Google Chrome will consume. If you get in the habit of closing unused tabs, you’ll notice your Mac won’t go hot and won’t even hear the CPU fan working in the background. 

Method 2 – Delete Unused Extensions

A quick overview of the Chrome Web Store will give you plenty of ideas for handy extensions. You’ll end up on a mass-downloading spree with multiple extensions to improve your browsing experience. 

I already mentioned that, unfortunately, extensions eat RAM and CPU power. So, there’s a price to pay for using each one, as handy as they might be. Even when you’re not using them, these extensions consume hardware resources.

Like the previous method, a simple, albeit short-term, solution is to delete the extensions you don’t need or use. Here’s a guide on how to remove extensions from Chrome on Mac.

Method 3 – Chrome Task Manager

The Chrome Task Manager will tell you exactly how much RAM and CPU power each tab and extension consumes

When you notice your Mac getting hot, use the Chrome Task Manager to shut down tabs and extensions that consume too many resources. Here is how to do that:

Step 1: Press the three vertical dots in the top-right corner.

Step 2: Go to “More tools” and click on “Task Manager.”

Step 3: The “Memory footprint” tells you how much RAM each tab consumes. Select a high-RAM-consuming tab and press “End Process.” 

Method 4 – Download an Extension

I know I just talked about how extensions consume resources, but there are extensions specifically built to improve your experience on the web. It might sound counterproductive to download another extension, but hear me out.

Some extensions help reduce RAM and CPU consumption from unused tabs on Chrome Mac. One particular extension I want to mention is “Tab Snoozer.”

This extension suspends unused tabs and prevents them from consuming hardware resources from your Mac. 

The extension comes in handy when you aren’t using specific tabs but don’t want to close them, as you’ll need to go through your history to open them again. 

Here is how to use the extension:

Step 1: Launch Google Chrome and go to the Chrome Web Store.

Step 2: In the search field, type in “Tab Snoozer.

Step 3: Download the extension and add it to the extensions toolbar by pressing the “Extensions” button in the top-right corner.

Confirm to add the extension.

Step 4: Navigate to the tab and press the “Tab Snooze” extension button whenever you want to snooze a tab. It will ask for how long you want to snooze the tab. You can also reopen the tab by going into the extension snooze list manually. 

I prefer this extension because snoozing a tab saves hardware resources. In addition, you can reopen snoozed tabs without needing to go into the search history. 

If you don’t like the extension, there are plenty of other handy extensions to replace it. I would like to give an honorable mention to “OneTab,” “TooManyTabs,” “Memory Saves,” and “The Great Suspender Original.”

Conclusion 

That concludes this short guide on the reasons behind Chrome making your Mac hot and how to fix it. Now you know that Google Chrome can consume lots of hardware resources, causing your Mac to overheat. 

Causes for overheating are having too many tabs open and downloading too many extensions. But as you can see, plenty of solutions exist to help you solve the issue.

Do you have any other issues, questions, or concerns related to using Chrome on Mac? Leave a comment and let me know.

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