How to Fix a Nintendo Switch Fan Noise

nintendo switch fan noise

Last updated: November 16, 2022 at 11:13 am

Since Nintendo and Sega swept the games market in the 1980s, game consoles have become a feature in most homes. Nowadays, children tend to connect with school friends to play games online rather than a game of football outside.

Whereas in previous decades, parents allowed their children to watch tv to keep them quiet, now it’s more likely to be a game of Fortnite. Unfortunately, they are also not cheap. That’s why if you start to hear unusual sounds from the Nintendo Switch, it can be a worry.

A commonly reported problem in older consoles is excessively loud fan noise. You may hear this noise while the Switch is in use and while charging in its dock.

Is A Fan Noise Normal?

Yes, it is normal for the Switch to switch on the fans to cool the console if it’s been in use for a long time or is running a resource-hungry game. However, if it continues to blow a long time after switching it off or starts soon after starting it up, it may indicate a problem.

Here are some possible fixes you can try before there is permanent damage to the console.

6 Ways to Fix a Nintendo Switch Fan Noise

1. Clean It

The cooling fan can suck in a lot of dust, and this, in turn, means the fan needs to work harder to maintain the temperature. Cleaning your Switch regularly will keep it in tip-top condition for longer.

Start by holding down the power button to turn off the console completely
Use a slightly damp cloth to clean the Switch’s screen and case. You could do the controllers too, but this obviously does not affect the fan. Do not use any cleaning solutions, as these may damage the console

Clean all the vents and other ports in the Switch. You can try doing this with the same cloth you used for cleaning, but a can of compressed air is very effective and clearing dust and grime out of small spaces

Make sure the Switch is completely dry before turning it back on

2. Consider The Dock’s Location

nintendo switch dock

For the console to release heat efficiently and the fans to cool it properly, there must be a free flow of air around the dock. If the dock is placed on carpet or in a small cupboard or tv unit, the heat cannot disperse as well, and the fan must work harder.

If possible, keep the dock on a hard surface, away from any other sources of heat. This means that air can flow freely and help cool your Switch.

3. Take Breaks

The longer you use your Switch, the more it will heat up. To ensure good health for both you and your console, consider taking regular breaks during your game. If you’ve been playing continuously for an hour or more, save your game and return your Switch to the dock to cool. Give it at least 15 minutes to cool down before you begin to play again.

During this time, get up, move around, and stretch your muscles and give your eyes a rest from the screen.

4. Play It On The TV

play nintendo switch on tv

One of the unique selling points of the Switch is that you can hook it up to your tv and play it there. Then, if you need to leave, you can take it out of its dock, and it becomes a handheld device.

If possible, limit your time playing your Switch as a handheld console. When you hold it, a large portion of the console is covered. The result is that heat from your hands transfers to the Switch, and your hands also block heat from escaping the device. So, the fan has to work harder and may wear out more quickly.

So, if you’re at home, spend as much time as possible playing on your tv with your Switch in the dock, where it can cool more quickly.

Related: Why Is My PS4 So Loud? [Solved]

5. Buy An External Fan

Many inexpensive fan kits are available that aid the Switch’s fan in cooling the device. Some attach to the dock, and others to the console itself. They are generally quieter than the built-in fan, and they also take some of the work away from it.

This means the fans do not need to run as long or work as hard to cool down your Switch. It will help resolve the excessive fan noise or even prevent it if your Switch isn’t suffering from it yet. Some models also include a temperature sensor so you can see if your console is starting to overheat.

6. Replace The Switch’s Internal Fan

replace nintendo switch fan

Even if the fan isn’t faulty, many users report that it is naturally noisy. Replacement internal fans are available, and some reviews report they are quieter and cool more efficiently than the original unit. Obviously, you should be wary about doing this if your Switch is still under warranty. Opening the unit yourself could void the warranty and leave you in trouble if it breaks for another reason.

If it is out of warranty, then it’s a fairly simple process. Most fans include full instructions, but if you’re a visual learner, here’s a YouTube video that guides you through the process step-by-step.


Your Switch should last for many years, but if it’s becoming noisy, it doesn’t necessarily mean there is a problem. Naturally, if it’s making grinding or rattling noises, this is not normal, and you need to get it repaired.

Fan noises, however, are a normal part of your console’s operation. If the length of time the fans run or their volume becomes excessive, there are steps you can take to resolve or even prevent the problem.

Clean your Switch regularly to prevent a build-up of dust that can cause it to overheat. Position the dock somewhere cool, where air can circulate freely. Take regular breaks while gaming and, where possible, play on the tv rather than holding the Switch in your hands.

Finally, if needed both external and internal fans are available, that should return you to almost silent running.

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About the Author: Claire

Hailing from the North-East, Claire has been writing for Quiet Living since 2020 and has built a wealth of knowledge in home improvement, with a keen interest in knowledge based articles.

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