High GPU Usage While Playing Fortnite: How to Fix It

Ensure your overclocking software is not the issue

by Claire Moraa
Claire Moraa
Claire Moraa
Author
Claire likes to think she's got a knack for solving problems and improving the quality of life for those around her. Driven by the forces of rationality, curiosity,... read more
Reviewed by Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Windows Server & Networking Expert
After moving away from the corporate work-style, Alex has found rewards in a lifestyle of constant analysis, team coordination and pestering his colleagues. Holding an MCSA Windows Server... read more
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  • GPU usage is a measure of how busy a GPU is, and it's usually expressed as a percentage.
  • If your GPU usage is at 100 percent, it means that it's being used all the time and not available for other tasks.
  • Games like Fortnite can cause such behavior but with driver updates, you can manage the GPU usage.
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You’ve probably seen this problem before. You’re playing Fortnite, everything is fine, and then suddenly the frame rate drops like a rock. You look at your GPU usage and it is off the roof! What’s going on and why is the GPU usage so high?

GPU usage is a metric that describes how much a graphics card is being used. If you’re playing a game or watching a video and your GPU crashes frequently, it means that the computer is using all of the processing power of the graphics card. So how do you fix it? We have some answers below.

Why is my GPU usage suddenly so high? 

If you suddenly start seeing high GPU usage, there are a few common causes:

  • Processor-intensive programs – If you see a jump in your GPU usage when you run an application, it means there’s an application using the graphics card for rendering. 
  • Recent app updates – If you have recently updated any software on your computer or installed new programs, there could be conflicts between them that are causing high GPU usage.
  • Malware or viruses – Malware, viruses, and other types of malicious software can sometimes cause your computer to use more GPU power than it should. However, it’s nothing a good antivirus can’t handle.
  • Hardware issues – If your graphics card has been damaged by dust, water, or other environmental factors, it may not be operating at its full potential.
  • Driver issues – Many of today’s PC games require the latest graphics hardware to run smoothly without lag or stuttering issues.
  • Power settings –  If you have turned on power-saving features, these settings might be causing your PC to use more GPU resources than usual. You need to find the perfect power efficiency settings.
  • GPU is overheating – You should try to check the temperature of your GPU and CPU. If it is too high, it might be caused by overheating.

How do I fix high GPU usage while gaming?

Some basic checks that could help reduce GPU usage include:

1. Turn down the graphics settings 

  1. Hit the Start menu icon and select Settings.settings windows 11
  2. Click on System then select Display.
  3. Navigate to the Scale & layout section then under Display resolution, click on the drop-down menu and pick a lower resolution setting than your current one.

2. Update your graphic drivers

  1. Click on the Windows button type Device Manager in the search bar and click Open.black-screen-installing-graphics-card-driver
  2. Navigate to Display adapters to expand, right-click on your graphics card, and select Update driver.Graphic Driver Update
  3. Select Search automatically for drivers.

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3. Check for Windows updates

  1. Hit the Windows key and click on Settings.settings windows 11
  2. Select Windows Update and click on Check for updates.check for updates windows 11 settings
  3. Download and install if available.

4. Turn off any overclocking software 

Overclocking is a way to make your CPU run faster than it normally would, which can result in higher performance at the cost of higher temperatures and more power consumption. If you’re overclocking your graphics card, that can also contribute to high GPU usage while gaming.

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The best thing to do is turn off any overclocking software before playing games so that it doesn’t interfere with how well they run on their own without any additional adjustments.

Is 100% GPU usage while gaming normal?

Yes, it’s normal for your GPU to be 100% maxed out during gaming. In fact, it’s a good thing. Your graphics card (or GPU) is the most important part of your computer when it comes to getting a good gaming experience. 

If your GPU isn’t working at full capacity, then you’re not getting the best performance possible from your PC.  With that said, your graphics card should not always be using 100% of its processing power while you are playing games especially if you have other programs open at the same time. 

If your computer is showing 100% GPU usage, it means that your graphics card is being overworked and can’t handle the task at hand (in this case, the game). 100% GPU usage when idle or Fortnite not using your GPU is, however, a cause for concern. 

Most modern games are very CPU-intensive and the GPU only needs to do a little work. However, if you’re using a laptop with an integrated GPU, it’s also possible that your CPU isn’t powerful enough to handle the game. It will then offload some of its work onto the GPU instead.

If all else fails, it may be time to throw in the towel and get yourself a new graphics card. Sometimes it has to do more with your hardware than Fortnite itself.

Hopefully, your GPU is no longer high when playing Fortnite. Elsewhere, if Fortnite settings are not saving, we have a solution for that.

Let us know if you have noticed any improvements after trying out these solutions in the comment section below.

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