I have a MacBook 12 Early 2016.

When I'm using it outside and it is hot, it warns me about stopping because the temperature is too high. And then it stops.

I'm using a tool to see the temperature of different elements of the MacBook but I would like to know what is the element that makes this warning : I don't think it is the CPU because sometimes it is hotter without any warning.

Is it the battery temperature or cpu proximity ? is there an official explanation ?


  • What tool are you using? When this happens, doesn't the tool show the temps of the various parts? What is it telling you? – Monomeeth Aug 4 '17 at 13:58
  • This answer has good info to help you investigate: apple.stackexchange.com/questions/237628/… – cmason Aug 4 '17 at 14:13
  • I'm using iStat Menus. It tells me the temperature of different parts of the computer but the warning occurs sometimes when all temperature are quite low. – Fredv Aug 4 '17 at 14:48
  • Thanks @cmason the max temperature for my CPU is 100°C. But the warning occurs when the cpu is at 55° – Fredv Aug 4 '17 at 14:53

No. Apple doesn’t publish firmware code and you’d have to reverse engineer several components including the on die cpu sensors, the discrete sensors, probably sensors on storage and possibly dozens of sensors within the battery cells.

Since the MacBook have no blowers, on a practical level, you can prop it up on a stand and ensure airflow is good and optionally ensure cool air surrounds the device to reduce internal temperatures. The whole case is a heat sink and radiator, so you can dramatically cool it with an elevated stand and/or cool airflow.

If you have any coverings or cases on your Mac - absolutely remove them since a thin gap of air between the metal and plastic is a great insulator just like a blanket would be.

Outside in the sun or even with shade, you can have several additional problems:

  • sunlight on the black screen will overheat it dramatically and light on the rest of the case is less than ideal.
  • getting cool air will be hard or impossible
  • thanks for your answer, I understand it's difficult to work outside in a very hot area with this one. – Fredv Aug 4 '17 at 14:56
  • Good answer. Additionally I'd add vigilance in the use of a case/shell, but more importantly that of a screen protector or keyboard cover as although none of these play a formal role in heat dissipation they can increase internal temps by preventing ambient heat dissipation. – njboot Aug 4 '17 at 17:23
  • @njboot YES - that's worth an edit to call out. Cases and stickers can really add heat to devices without openings or blowers. – bmike Aug 4 '17 at 17:31

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