An eternal debate of removing the side panel or any other panel of the case is never going to halt. But as with everything, there are pros and cons to it, plus and conditions are different in every house or office.
Usually, people remove the panels to improve ventilation if CPU cooling is off (temporarily or beyond repair) or to help the unit cool down better. However, everything you do to your tech may cause consequences. So, let’s see if it’s any good to leave the unit open and what the results may be.
Advantages of Leaving Your CPU Completely Open
As far as the research goes, there are two advantages to leaving the side (or more) open:
- Better cooling (optional).
Depending on the design of your CPU, opening one or more sides may provide better cooling for the system. It also depends on the temperature in your room, though. If it’s boiling hot and your A/C is off, it might be better to avoid exposing your tech to such conditions.
- The looks.
A lot of people enjoy seeing the inside of a machine for lots of reasons. If you’re one of them, it may be quite tempting to open up the CPU. However, there are other ways to see the inside and avoiding the cons that may follow. Consider buying a transparent side panel and enjoy the looks.
Disadvantages of Leaving Your CPU Completely Open
However, even the best CPUs aren’t safe from the following disadvantages of removing their walls:
- Dust buildup.
With an open case, your CPU will become dusty much faster, and the amount of dust may surprise you. Unless you’re ready to clean the computer every week or two, dusty elements can become a huge problem.
- Without protection, the noise from the unit will be much more noticeable. Even the quietest computers turn out to be much louder when you get exposed to the noise directly.
- Lack of protection.
Any hit will bring times more damage to an open CPU than to a covered one. The case is there mainly to protect the system.
The list can continue with less obvious cons like curious pets, access to children, liquids, etc.
Your final decision should depend on a lot of things. First of all, the surrounding conditions. If your house is always hot and humid, maybe it’s better to leave the walls in place. Then, it’s important how much time you’re ready to invest in cleaning the details and how often you can do it. Dust doesn’t seem that dangerous at first, but one of the top household issues with tech is not dusting it well.
So, if the design allows and you really have issues with cooling, try this out. But make sure your microclimate at home is fine and you’re ready to pay more attention to the unit. If not, consider the case closed (pun intended). Maybe it’s better to just clean the computer, including the fan, more often.