I have a 2010 iMac that I used until recently. It has an internal Fusion Drive. I seldom ever turned this iMac off. I just let the screen saver kick in. The iMac worked great for 10 years and is still working as i write this.. I recently got a 2020 iMac and now I'm curious if leaving it on for 24 hours a day will hurt anything, especially the SSD. Thanks.

  • 4
    I have Macs that haven't been turned off in 10 years, never even allowed to sleep. Reboot only for OS updates. – Tetsujin Oct 24 '20 at 15:28
  • thanks, i thought it was ok but i wasn't sure. Thank you again. – Natsfan Oct 24 '20 at 15:29
  • Which model did you get? I’m tempted to get one later once I see what the spring releases look like. – bmike Oct 24 '20 at 18:48
  • @bmike I got the 27" 3.8GHz 8-core 10th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, Turbo Boost up to 5.0GHz. I have 2 TB of internal RAM SSD and the Radeon Pro 5700 with 8GB of GDDR6 memor which i didn't eally need. I got it with 8 GB memory which I immediately updated from OWC to 64 GB. – Natsfan Oct 24 '20 at 18:54
  • @bmike I got way more computer than i need. i just wanted to have a top notch iMac once in my life! lol. I love it and it runs very well. – Natsfan Oct 24 '20 at 18:58

Yes, you will be wasting energy and cooling and no the hardware won’t suffer (especially if you let the backlight go off).

Power cycles cause our Macs to fail three to five years before those we leave on all the time. The longest running Macs we have are the ones that run always.

We happily replace batteries and drives when they fail, but the stats are clear for us that if you can leave the gear running, you generally have the longest life. We don’t have as many iMacs as mini and pro and even laptops in rooms due to space, but I see no reason why their engineering would be any different than the rest.

This pattern followed from the Motorola to PPC to Intel transitions and I can’t wait to see how Apple Silicon changes the hardware and what doesn’t change.

  • Yes, it's usually thermal cycles on the chips, or sometimes other components. Chips are many layers of almost-but-not-quite the same thermal expansion coefficients. Heating and cooling change the stress distribution, and over time will develop weak points, and eventually failures. PCBs have similar problems. – Quantum Mechanic Oct 26 '20 at 18:29

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