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Monday, 5 January 2015


Removing the side panel helps you keep your PC cool?

More than often I come across people who simply remove and keep aside their PC side panel from the cabinet thinking that it'll help them keep their desktop cooler and quieter hence increasing its performance and life span.

This is more commonly observed in India and other equatorial countries where the temperatures are too high especially during summers. Yes, I know either you are looking at your own open case right now or thinking of one of your acquittance who has some arrangement in practice right now!
The big question is, Does removing your side panel helps you keep your computer cool?
Let me explain and help you out with this very general issue today. The basic principle of a case or a cabinet is to create either positive or negative air pressure inside itself. Both have pros and cons, and there's tons of disagreement over optimal fan placement, but the point is: bring cool air in, heat it up, and get it out. When you remove the side panel, you disrupt the intended airflow of the case—whatever it may be—and also invite more dust to settle on your components. So it's not recommended.
If your system runs significantly cooler with the side panel off—except in some very specific situations I might not have anticipated—your case and its fans are either designed poorly or working poorly. I tested my PC at home with the case on and off, and the difference was negligible (everything was well within safe ranges with either configuration).
So, while removing the case panel won't be catastrophic, it counteracts the intended cooling solution of your case, and even if it works without the panel, there's the dust problem. If you really want that open air look, then yes, you can safely run a caseless computer. The natural convection can keep a test bench PC within safe temperatures, assuming the room is kept reasonably cool. There's still the dust, though, and I'm very anti-dust.
If you have a case, you're best off leaving the panel on and letting it work as intended. And if you're having serious overheating problems, then look for the real issue. It could be a problem with your CPU cooler, your PC may need a cleaning, the fans may not be operating properly or are obstructed (cable management is important!), or your case may just have terrible airflow (sorry).
Is a good case too expensive with all the bells and vessels like cable management, lots of fans installation options? No! take a look at these cases if you want, they are well within budget and can do anything you want them to.

Well that solves the issue and puts yet another general practice in the myth bucket! As for the image above, thats just a show off your components don't ever run them as such.

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