Critical temperature on WD Elements Desktop 2 To


My external HDD WD elements destop 2 To is very hot. HDTune alerts me for a critical temperature of 67°C at this moment. Sometimes it’s 65°C, sometimes 69°C or 70°C.

It is put on the desktop, not closed in a cupboard or something like that.

My others HDD have normal temperatures (35°C for the Samsung used for the system inside the PC, and 41°C for my other WD (WD20EARX) used in an external HDD case).

Can I use the RMA service without risk ? I don’t want my demand to be rejected if WD consider that the temperature is “normal”…

I opened a request in my WD support account 2 weeks ago, but no answer at this time. I’m afraid to lost my data if my HDD deteriorate.

Thanks to advice me.

(Sorry for my english, I do my best xD , I think it’s understandable… )

Edit : HDTune Screenshot :

Make sure that you have the elements in a well ventilated place, also try running a test with DLG.

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Thanks for your answer.

The HDD case is just put on desk, not enclosed at all. So ventilation should’nt be the problem. Even it’s that right that “WD Elements Desktop” cases have no ventilation at all… And I’m not using it in Colorado :smiley: (ok not funny, very sad situatuation there).

It passed the SMART test. I just launched the “extended test” 30 minutes ago. The software is anouncing  more than 16 hours remaining… I don’t think It’s normal, all others softwares that could use the disk are closed.

So I’ll come back tomorrow with results. TY

So after about 16 hours an a half, it says “Test result : PASS”…

But It’s still too hot in my mind. 66°C now, 68°C this morning. And no answer to my 2 weeks old request in my WDC Support  Portal account.

I received an answer from WD today. Too high temperature is enough to demand a replacement.

Any 3.5 multi-platter disk drive is going to need some sort of ventilation. The temps of modern HDD’s should not exceed 40-50C if you’re considering any kind of longevity. This is observation from practical real-life experience outside the cubicle.

You’re looking at a design defect (in the housing) of the Desktop Elements series I feel. A case of form over function. No pun intended. Some wisecrack design student wanted to show his boss a clean looking package and forgot about real-world performance. The boss, being unable to see the ramifications of having a disk enclosure without ventilation will hopefully be looking for employment elsewhere.

I can offer you a few solutions:

1- Drill some holes in the case, both top and bottom, and put a tiny fan in there. This makes a world of difference!

2- Use the drive sporadically, reading and writing a few files at a time. When the temp gets high, power it down.

3- Exchange the product for a different & properly designed model. One with some form of cooling.

If you have RMA’d the disk, check to be sure the replacement exhibits improved characteristics. The first thing you should do is power up the disk and do some marathon copy sessions. See what happens! And please keep us posted on what transpires over the days and weeks ahead. Enjoy!

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Yes I have doubts about the conception of the products itself…

In fact I bought it at a “good” price when prices increased in october. (90€, whereas the internal 2TB drives cost at least 130-150€).

But what is strange is that many users on amazon(.fr) says that even if there’s absolutely no aeration, the HDD isn’t hot. So I suppose It’s just bad luck for me, it must be a defective drive.

I’ll have to copy nearly 2TB from this one to the new that I’ll receive in some days. So I will come here and tell you the difference of temperature.

(Whats **bleep** a little is that I think that even when garantee will be expired, I would not be able to put the HDD away of his case to use it in a better case or in a rack, because I read that connectors are soldered to the disk)

If you modify the case or take it apart, you can lose your warranty.  If it’s running too hot, then RMA it.


Yesterday I received the new external HDD.

First surprise : I send back a WD Elements Desktop 2To @ 7200 rpm, and I receive a MyBook Essential 2To @ 5400 rpm…

Ok, not very satisfied, this is not exactely the same product as the one I bought… But after all it’s a stockage drive, 5400 rpm should be less hot…

I don’t like the case, plastics looks cheap and not, and above all, I don’t like of these LED on the front. Who need 4 LEDs to see if his drive is nearly full ? …

The good points :

  • an on/off button, Elements Desktop has not.

  • the case SEEMS aerated (but…).

Now in use…

Very bad surprise, it’s nearly as hot as the WD Elements when I transfer my files. about 63°C yesterday, today up to 66°C… The WD Elements Desktop is 68°C. My samsung in the PC is 33°C. Temperature in the room : 25-28°C.

I don’t know what to think at all… It would be very unlucky to receive 2 defective disks. And on the other side I have many other drives and they’re not so hot.

I tried many software, they all give the sames temperatures (everest ultimate, HWMonitor, HDTune pro). And when Itouch cases it’s hot of course^^

Here is a photo of the Drives :

And 2 captures of HDTune Pro with the temperature of the MyBook yesterday and today (in use) :

Could anyone give what temperature display his WD External Drives please ?

Last thing : The WD Elements Desktop was in warrantly until November 2014 (2 years), now in my WD Support account the MyBook Essential says in warrantly until November 2013… Did I lost a year doing the RMA ? …

Yehp, that seems a little hot.

Take the wrapper off and keep the disk vertical for convective cooling.

If that doesn’t work, then live with it. Or RMA it till you get a disk that doesn’t overheat.

I personally don’t think any of these disks are made for anything but intermittent usage. You know, copying pictures from mom’n’pops 5-MegaPixel digital camera.

You can also tape a cpu fan to the housing, which is what I do when I do lengthy copy operations. By doing that I get ambient + 3C temps more or less!

I’m not timid about saying the product design methodology of disks in enclosures is wrong. They basically fry the drives unless you are using an “eco-style” drive intermittently, or have a small fan going in there.

I have an older MyBook 500GB from years ago, like when they first came out. This one runs up to 65C if I start any lengthy copy sessions like more 30GB straight through. I keep it for backup operations via a differential filesync program. This means I power it on for a just a little while like 10 or 15 minutes, and the amount of data that is changed is around 1 or 2 GB per session - from time to time. Very light usage. And that’s a good thing. And that’s all I need it for. Since it serves as a backup - I’ve once in a while checked the disk with a surface scan and zero-verify test. No problems. This is not a green disk and has a lot of platters because it’s a first generation 500GB disk. It was never intended to be enclosed. And I can understand that. Much of the box artwork is geared toward the backup and storage theme, which implies very light usage.

I also have a 2008-2009 “era” MyBook 1TB. It doesn’t get above 46C even during long copy operations of an hour or so. This also serves as a backup. This is a GreenPower eco disk of some sort. And I could probably run it day and night not have it get hot.

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I wonder if any of the disks you have are blacks or reds or blues? Those are desktop drives and shouldn’t be in an enclosure without a fan.

A GreenPower “eco” disk will work ok in a MyBook enclosure and not get above about 45C. Perhaps 52C if you’re doing extended copy operations. And that is assuming the disk is in a vertical position with a clear area around it.

I wonder if they had substituted Black, Blue, or red drives in the external enclosures due to shortages or for some production availability reason?

I can tell you why the My Book is so hot.  You have it laying down.  It’s not designed to lay down.  That can burn it up.  You need to stand it on end, so the heat can vent out the top.

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Already mentioned:

"Yehp, that seems a little hot.

Take the wrapper off and keep the disk vertical for convective cooling."

Thanks keith and Bill for your answers.

SoI tried to pu the drive vertically, after a night off.

It starts at about 38°C. When I don’t use it (no program or transfer or anything), it grows little by little up to about 51°C.

When I copy files (intense session, more the 300GB), it heats up to 62°C. It’s indeed a little less hot than in horizontal position, but still too hot in my mind. I think I’ll try to sell this drive, and buy a Caviar Green in replacement…

To answer your interrogation Keith, according to this video, it should be a Green Drive inside…  But Caviar Green should’nt be so hot, I have 3 of them.

I’ll contact again WD support, and ask for the lost warrantly year. For the temperature… I give up. I don’t need a drive that I can’t use normally^^

Thanks for your helps again !

Check out the specks for the Green drives.  If it’s at 51C, then you’re fine.

I don’t know how to interprete the term “operating temperature”… Is it the temperature of the room or the drive ?

For the MyBook it says 5 to 35°C

Same specs for Elements Desktop

And for internal Drives it says 0 to 60°C (Caviar blue, Green, black…).

Not very logical if it’s the temperature of the drive itself. And 51°C is when the drive is ON but not in use. In use It’s 62-63°C at this time.

kevol30 wrote:

I don’t know how to interprete the term “operating temperature”… Is it the temperature of the room or the drive ?


For the MyBook it says 5 to 35°C

Same specs for Elements Desktop


And for internal Drives it says 0 to 60°C (Caviar blue, Green, black…).


Not very logical if it’s the temperature of the drive itself. And 51°C is when the drive is ON but not in use. In use It’s 62-63°C at this time.

Operating temperature is mostly referring to ambient room temperature.  The temperature of the drive should not get more than 5 degrees above the max room temp. 

For the My Book and Elements Desktop, that is referring to ambient temperature, but it isn’t just about the drive itself, which can handle more.  It’s also about the electronics of the external case.  So the 5 to 35 degrees is taking into consideration the plastics of the case, itself.

Finally, how are you measuring the temps of the drives?  Are you using some kind of sensor, or is HD Tune going off the Bios temperature?  On top of all that, if you are having drives getting consistently hot, then you need to take into consideration where they’re being placed.  How hot is the ambient temperature?  Is there enough ventilation, fans, etc.?

Ok, so about 26°C in the room is acceptable. Drives aren’t enclosed, just put on the desk near the keyboard. The room is aerated all the time in summer (no climatisation). In winter Elements Desktop was at about 60°C, with an ambiant temperature of 18-21°C.

Temperatures are mesured direcly by the probes inside each drives, which can be read with SMART informations I guess. So all softwares (Everest Ultimate, HDTune Pro, HWMonitor) gives the same temperatures. Same thing for motherboards, processors, graphic cards… they all have probes. For example my old processor E5200 displays a 59°C temperature when I use it at 100% (encoding x264), and the Samsung drive inside the PC, on which is the system, displays a 32°C temperature.

So if it would be caused by the ambiant temperature, all components would be hot (59°C isn’t hot a processor used at 100%).

I wrote to WDC for the warrantly, too bad for temperature, I suppose I just can accept it as Keith said.