Help Laptop CPU Usage and Crashing

Recently my dell laptop is starting to act up on me. It is 3 years old and running windows Vista. The problem is it will randomly slow down a lot and the CPU usage says it is 100%. The fan speed also kicks on high but it is not hot to the touch, the air is not hot, all my temps are fine and I have it on a cooling stand.

If I am playing a video game (World of Warcraft in this case) it starts to slow down a lot then a few seconds later the laptop screen goes grainy black and white, like a TV, all staticy.

I can't seem to figure out the issue, I ran the F12 computer diagnostics at boot and it checked out fine, although onetime it even slowed down then too. I would think if it were windows related (a bad install or drivers) then it would not do it during the diagnostics as that is done before windows loads.

I am thinking maybe the RAM, or Motherboard is bad, but maybe video card too. Not sure why it would pass the tests if it were one of those.

Any suggestions on what to do to get this fixed?

Thank you.
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More about help laptop usage crashing
  1. There are several things to try. Check the fans and make sure they're working. Check the CPU temps. Use task manager to see what's using the CPU time. Unseat and reseat the ram. try one then the other stick. Failing all of that wipe the drive and reinstall windows.
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