How to lower CPU usage on Windows 10

The Central Processing Unit (CPU) is the core of any computing device and is responsible for executing any instructions you give it. When those resources are taxed, apps may lag or close, the cursor may move slowly, or the computer may start to heat up.

Fortunately, there are quick ways to determine if your CPU is overloaded and to reduce CPU usage on Windows 10.

How to Check CPU Usage on Windows 10

Before we dive into tips on how to lower your CPU usage, it’s a good idea to see which programs or processes are causing the high CPU usage. This way you don’t have to waste time trying solutions that are irrelevant to your problem.

Follow the steps below to check CPU usage:

  1. Open Windows Task Manager (Ctrlaltremove) and click Task Manager or by pressing and holding CtrlShiftESC on your keyboard.
  1. Identify the Processes and Performance tabs, which will give you a better idea of ​​what may be contributing to the high CPU usage. Select the top of the column to sort by CPU usage.

  1. Identify the Services and System Processes such as wsappx, dwm.exe, ntoskrnl.exe or csrss.exe which take up your computer’s RAM and power.
  2. To try and fix the problem immediately, you can try to end the process by right clicking on it and choosing End of task

You should only end the task if you see more than 50% CPU usage for more than 10 minutes. Sometimes Windows runs scans or updates in the background that cause high CPU usage for short periods of time.

Ending the task is also just a short term fix and doesn’t really solve the problem. Read the solutions below for tips to fix this issue permanently.

How to lower CPU usage on Windows 10

Use the solutions below to diagnose, troubleshoot and reduce CPU usage on Windows 10.

Fast repairs

Try the following quick solutions to reduce CPU usage on your Windows 10 PC.

  • Save your work and restart your computer to clear temporary files and resolve possible delays in long-running processes.
  • Close any background processes that may be running by unchecking them under the To start tab in Task Manager. sort on Startup Impact to see which programs are the most resource intensive. Restart your computer to prevent them from restarting automatically.
  • Update your drivers to eliminate any bugs or compatibility issues. Select Get started Settings Updates and SecurityCheck for updates to update critical drivers.
  • Check out our guide on BIOS version if you are not sure which version is used on your PC and update your BIOSwhich might fix the CPU usage issue.
  • Boot in safe mode and check if the high CPU usage still occurs. If not, then the high CPU usage could be caused by third party software. You can follow our clean boot guide which will help you identify the exact program or process causing the high CPU usage.
  • If Cortana is one of the programs causing high CPU usage, disable Cortana and see if it helps.
  • Add more RAM to your computer to take some of the stress off your processor.
  • Check your diet. If the power supply is faulty, it can begin to undervolt your CPU to conserve power. As a result, the CPU is not functioning at full capacity.

Check your power options

Some power settings can slow down your computer’s CPU speed and affect your machine’s performance. It’s worth trying both Balanced and High performance power schemes to see which reduces high CPU usage. Below we’ll show you how to enable High Performance mode, but if you’re already using it, switch to Balanced.

  1. Type Edit power plan in the search box and select Open
  1. Select Power management in the address bar.
  1. Select Create an energy plan
  1. a . switch non-energy saving plan
  1. Press Ctrlaltremove to open task management and check if your CPU usage is back to normal.

Disable Superfetch

Superfetch (Sysmain) is a resource-intensive feature in Windows 10 that improves system performance by preloading your frequently used apps into RAM before you launch them. You can disable it by following the steps below to see if that reduces CPU usage.

If you don’t see a drop in CPU usage after disabling the service, you can re-enable it as we don’t recommend leaving it disabled.

  1. Right click Get startedRun
  2. Type services.msc in the Run dialog box, then press Enter
  1. Scroll down to Sysmain in the Services window, right click on it and select Properties
  1. Select the drop-down menu next to Startup type and then select Handicapped
  1. Select Applyrestart your PC and check if this decreases CPU usage.

Leave us a comment and let us know if this guide helped you reduce CPU usage on your Windows 10 PC.

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