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How to cool down your phone (Since wireless coolant isn’t a thing)

By Josh Levesque

Originally published May 8, 2024


Last Updated May 8, 2024

Mint Fox cooking on top of a hot phone and a sign that says "how to cool down your phone"

You may notice your phone starting to feel like a hand warmer after extended use. It’s a relatively normal thing, and even though it might help return the feeling to your fingers when you’re sledding in January, extended overheating can affect your phone’s performance over time or even cause permanent damage. So just do what you do in July and toss your phone in the pool, right? Absolutely not. As far as how to cool down your phone goes, you shouldn’t submerge it in water, you shouldn’t try to give it a beer and you can’t just hold the freezer door open and stand in front of it pretending you’re looking for a snack. But there are a few things you can do. Let’s go over why your phone is overheating and some tips to help it chill the f*! out (we said fox).

In this article

Why is my phone overheating?

Unless you accidentally set it in the oven while baking a pizza, you may not know what exactly is causing your phone to overheat. There are several things that can cause a phone to overheat, but the most common sources are the battery, the CPU and the charge port.

The battery isn’t working properly

If the entire backside of your phone is where most of the heat is coming from, your battery is the likely culprit. It may be working too hard to process your phone’s different functions, which tends to happen with older batteries. I know I can’t last half as long on a jungle gym as I did when I was younger. It happens to all of us.


Cars, video game consoles, fax machines (remember those?) and phones all have this in common: they need a break sometimes. If you’ve been gaming all day or you’re on the ninth hour of binge streaming an entire season of your favorite show, like one of those ‘90s sitcoms that had 30+ episodes per season, there’s a good chance that’s what’s causing your phone to overheat. 

Too many active apps

Jumping from app to app without fully closing them can result in your phone working overtime keeping them all running in the background. There may even be some apps running in the background that you don’t know about, thanks to background app refresh.

Faulty charging cable

Is your phone mostly overheating when it plugs in? If you answered yes, did you buy your charging cable from a third party to save a few bucks? We get it, we’re all about saving money here, too. But cheap charging cables can contribute to your phone overheating while it charges. If you’re still using the manufacturer-approved charging cable but it has some twists and tears in it, that can be an issue too.


Yep, phones can get viruses, too. Did you open a suspicious email attachment or visit a sketchy site just before your phone became a pocket toaster oven? A virus could be to blame for its overheating.

Mint Fox trying to cool down his phone with a fan

How to cool down your phone when it’s overheating

If your phone is literally too hot to handle or you get an overheating alert, there are a few quick things you can do in the moment to put it on ice (figuratively… don’t actually put it on ice). 

Turn it off

The quickest and most effective way to slow overheating is to just power down whatever it is that’s overheating and let it rest. 

Take the case off

When you find yourself overheating, you take off your sweater. Your phone case is kinda like your phone’s sweater. Take it off so it can get better airflow. 

Go to a cooler space

Are you texting poolside while baking in the summer sun? Take your phone inside or at least find some shade.

Fan or blow on your phone

Yes, really. Just don’t put it in a fridge or freezer. Sudden temperature changes can cause condensation to form, which is just as harmful to your phone, if not worse, than overheating.

Mint Fox being zen and meditating

How to stop a phone from overheating

Now you know what to do when your phone is already overheating, but wouldn’t it be better to not have it overheat at all? Here are a few proactive steps you can take to keep your phone from overheating in the first place. 

Keep out of direct sunlight

This might seem like an obvious recommendation… because it is. 

Wait before charging

If you think your phone might be at risk of overheating, hold off on plugging it in. Charging it generates extra heat.

Airplane mode

Disabling connections like Bluetooth and halting background app refresh can give your phone a welcome breather. 

Update OS and apps

Regular software & app updates are critical for applying bug fixes and security enhancements that help your phone run more efficiently.  

Take breaks

We know you might be in the middle of a very important gaming campaign, but lowering your screen time can be mutually beneficial, and it’s good to let your phone get some rest from time to time.

Close apps you aren’t using now (and delete the ones you never use)

The more apps you have on your phone, the more work your CPU is putting in. Close the apps you aren’t using to ease the burden a bit. And that app you downloaded to keep track of your mother-in-law’s flight back in 2019 and haven’t opened since? You can get rid of it now.

Lower your screen brightness

The brighter your phone screen, the harder your phone is working (and your eyes, let’s be honest).

How to check your phone temperature

The optimal temperature for your phone to be operating at is between 35 and 95 degrees fahrenheit. There are third-party apps you can download to help monitor your iPhone or Android phone’s temperature, but most models will send you an alert if they’re at risk of overheating.

Mint Fox showing his phone temperature

Now you’re really cooking (but your phone ain’t)

You just became an expert on how to cool down your phone. Pretty… cool, right? Sorry, had to. But while you’re here, you can also check out our blog on what could be slowing down your phone, since a few of the things that slow down a phone can also cause it to overheat. Or if you’re in full summer mode, check out our other blogs about how to keep your phone safe at the beach and how to determine if your phone is waterproof. And if your monthly wireless bill really has you heated, we highly recommend switching to Mint Mobile. Click to see what makes our premium wireless so very chill.

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