How to Clean Thermal Paste Of CPU

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Working for a long time on the computer always causes all the internal components to overheat. Once you start using the computer for a long time, it always starts heating up the internal components. This can always lead to various problems with the technical components of the product.

Nerds know about the presence of heat sinks inside PC vents because they help the processor run well and prevent overheating. Thermal paste inside a computer holds all the parts together. As the computer heats up, the glue inside it starts to dry too.

Technically, thermal paste acts as a complete shield that is responsible for the conductivity of heat within the computer. Therefore, the thermal paste must cure after a certain time. Pasta dries up and changing it is not a big task.

Most professionals only need a few minutes to complete the repair process. So asking a professional to do your job will always come first. If you don’t want to spend that much on replacing the thermal paste, this guide on how to clean CPU thermal paste will always help you get the desired results.

What is thermal paste?

Thermal paste is a sticky substance applied to improve heat transfer between the CPU’s integrated heat sink (IHS) and the heat sink. Bottom Line: It helps keep the CPU cool.

As seen below, microscopic imperfections on the contact surface create air pockets between them. This is where TIM (Thermal Interface Material) comes in, or thermal paste as it is commonly known.

Fill these pockets and create a uniform heat spreader over the entire surface for efficient heat exchange from the CPU to your heat sink.

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What do you need?

Removing thermal paste from the CPU is always a good question for anyone! However, if you always have the right tools available, removing thermal grease from a CPU is pretty easy. However, you should include a few components if you want to remove the thermal paste.

To start the list, the first thing you will probably need is a microfiber cloth. This is mainly because you need to clean up the entire CPU. If you use an alternative, such as paper towels, there is little chance that it will leave a residue.

Of course, you don’t want these things to happen in those phases. Therefore, choosing a microfiber cloth can be a great advantage. Another reason to choose a microfiber cloth is that it will allow you to clean the entire CPU in just a few minutes.

The next thing to look for is a cleaner to help you clean up the thermal paste present. When choosing a liquid, you need to be sure of the solution of the components. That is why we recommend using 99% isopropyl alcohol which will evaporate immediately. This will not leave a residue of any kind.

However, you may not get permission to buy it. In fact, in such situations, it is not at all safe to apply any other type of solution from home. Instead, you should choose the one that is perfect for such situations.

In such a situation, ArctiClean of Arctic Silver can be one of the best options. You won’t have to apply any other chemicals if you have this wonderful solution. With this method, it is a simple process and it also gives you perfect results.

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How long does thermal paste last: important note?

The hard question is, how long does thermal paste last? The easiest thing we can do is control the temperature of our computer. Study the growth generated over time taking into account the ambient temperature and similar conditions.

The equipment was on for half an hour and without performing any procedure, for example, with fans running at minimum revolutions and with a certain ambient temperature.

However, how to clean the thermal paste from the CPU is usually a somewhat tedious task, which requires us to be attentive for several months to take the temperature, store and settle them.

It is very easy to change the paste on the CPU pins from time to time. All you need is a screwdriver, a little patience, and a little skill.

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How to remove the thermal paste from your CPU?

Before you begin, you need to gather a few things. These things are microfiber cloths and rubbing alcohol (99%). A microfiber cloth is essential for cleaning the CPU, and there is an alcohol cleaner that will allow you to do this quickly. Some people use paper towels, but these towels leave a residue that can negatively affect your system. Therefore, it is recommended that you do not use it.

  • But if you can’t find a microfiber cloth, don’t worry. You can also use medical alcohol wipes. After all, this will allow you to quickly clean the entire CPU without leaving any residue. Know that we love rubbing alcohol for the same reason—it evaporates quickly and leaves no residue.
  • Now that our products are ready, we can start the cleaning process. Now the first step is to disconnect the main power. Of course, you must first turn off the computer before turning off the power connection.
  • Next, you need to disconnect all cables. So look for the wires and cables connected to your CPU. For example, there is the HDMI cable and the external cable that connects to your UPS. So you better remove them.
  • Once you remove the cable, it’s time to take the battery out of the case. However, removing the battery or disconnecting the power cord does not necessarily mean that the CPU is free. Therefore it is necessary to follow it. To do this, you need to press the power button on the CPU for about ten seconds. This should drain the remaining charge.
  • So now we are ready to start working on the CPU. However, before removing the CPU components, it is recommended that you wear gloves. This will prevent grease and sweat from accumulating on your hands and affecting your system.
  • Now you need to dust the area inside and around the heat sink with a light brush. Once you’ve cleaned that area thoroughly, it’s time to use a dry cloth to wipe off the old thermal paste from your CPU. You will find this paste stuck to the motherboard.
  • But this step alone won’t remove the entire paste, so you’ll need to add rubbing alcohol to your microfiber cloth and then work to remove all of the paste. If the cloth doesn’t work well, apply a little rubbing alcohol and then apply the paste to hard-to-reach areas. Remember that in the end, the entire space around the heatsink should look bright. It should be as if you just brought it home.

Following the above steps will completely clean the thermal paste. However, if you don’t know where the paste is, use the manual that probably came with your system. Just Google your CPU and you will find many PDF files where different parts of your system are located. Therefore, this thermal paste should be easy to clean.

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Clean thermal grease from the heatsink

Heat sink or CPU cooler is an essential component of any computer. To keep it cool and running smoothly, it sits on top of the CPU so that you can enjoy your favorite games or videos without lag.

It is easier to clean thermal grease from heat sinks than CPUs. You can follow the same method to clean the CPU, which will work fine.

There are different types of heat sinks, but the process is the same for each of them.

Pour a little IPA or ArctiClean over the paste, then gently wipe off the paste.

Here’s an experimental video from Linus Tech Tips on various products for cleaning thermal paste from CPUs and heat sinks. If you don’t want to spend money on extra products, see How to Use Regular Products to Clear Paste for additional information.

Why use thermal paste on the CPU?

The CPU heatsink on top may appear perfectly flat to the naked eye, but it isn’t.

On a microscopic level, there are small pockets and slots throughout the heat spreader. When you plug in your CPU cooler, these slots and pockets will act as an air gap that doesn’t transfer heat properly. Also, see how you can reproduce sound effects and play better in shooting games.

Therefore, your CPU will not cool down properly and may even refuse to work.

Thermal pastes fill small pockets and slots, so there is perfect contact between the CPU heat spreader and the surface of the CPU cooler. These pastes also conduct heat very quickly, so the cooling efficiency is high.

Ultimate Alternatives to Thermal Paste

When you wipe the thermal paste off the CPU socket, you will find that it is really sticky and messy. It can be a nightmare after cleaning. This is the reason why many people are looking for an alternative to thermal paste and luckily there is such an option.

The alternative is the Innovation Cooling graphite heating pad. You will need to put this type of pad between the plug and the heat sink, like thermal paste. In fact, these thermal pads provide better thermal conductivity than thermal paste. They don’t need to be cleaned this way, and you can even replace them if necessary. It’s time for manufacturers to start using them.

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Conclusion

Thermal paste is necessary to cool down the CPU or processor. Its cleaning is just as important as it dries out over time. You can be sure that thermal paste cleaners and surface purifiers will not damage any electronic parts. Be gentle while cleaning and don’t rush. Let it dry long enough and consider using a cooling-heating pad instead of thermal paste.

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