Hey, the only way to learn is to ask questions. And by helping you, I am inherently helping myself. We (I) am more than happy to help you.
Word and Firefox are very small, not intense applications. So no, I would say that dosent constitute as a full load. Get yourself a copy of Prime95 and run the hell outta that. Or get a temp monitoring software that logs all your temps at a given interval, and play some intense game for a while. Doom of Half life or something. Or you could open up the temp software, and open up mad programs. BIG ones, so it will push your system.
About the bios, yes it can fix/mend the problem. It can also improve performance. But it can also do the exact opposite. You mess up, you are out a mobo. If you are not comfotable doing it, dont. Get someone who is a little more computer literate to do it.