If you’re using a desktop PC, you surely know about the heat-up issue. You’ve faced automatic shutdown problem several times, haven’t you? This occurs because of the heat-up problem. The processor overheats during use and your PC gets shutdown. A part known as ‘heatsink’ helps to vent the excess heat of the processor, and there is the use of Thermal Paste. This paste is used to conduct the heat from the processor to the part ‘heatsink’.
However, it keeps drying out as time flows, and you have to replace it periodically. This is comparatively an easy task in computer repairing. All you need to do is clean out the old paste and apply new paste.
So are you trying to find the best way to clean thermal paste off CPU? Wondering how to wipe off thermal paste?
Let me make it even easier for you. Just follow the steps below to know how to remove thermal paste from your CPU.
Removing Thermal Paste – Step By Step:
Step 1: Cleaning Items
You’ll need cleaning items to remove the thermal paste leftover. Don’t worry after reading the term ‘cleaning items’, it’s just a piece of cloth, a pair of latex gloves, and rubbing alcohol! Your only concern is to choose the right cloth, because some paper clothes leave fibers behind. The best option is to use a microfiber cloth. And as for the alcohol, all I’ll suggest the higher the concentration the better, because it would take lesser time to evaporate.
CAUTION: Do Not Use any other cleaners! They can harm your hardware!
Step 2: Unplug Your PC
Shut down your desktop and unplug everything. Carefully unscrew the cabinet with a screw-driver, then very carefully take the heatsink (the fan on the processor) out. Then unlock the locking stick and take the processor out.
Step 3: Start Cleaning
Before the paste, you should clean the dust of the heatsink first. Use a brush, or an air-blower. Be careful and don’t give too much pressure while stroking the brush. Be sure that no dust is left in the heatsink.
Then you have to do the main part, i.e. wiping the old paste out. It should be on the copper core of the heatsink. Wet the cloth with the rubbing alcohol and gently wipe the paste on the core. Don’t give too much pressure, and continue rubbing until all the paste are removed.
Step 4: Look Out The Processor
Once you’re done with the heatsink, have a look on the processor to check whether there’s any trace of the old paste. But be very careful with the processor. You never wanted to damage it, right? So try to avoid scratching it. Wipe gently. Be mindful where the old paste ends up while wiping. Don’t allow it to lodge elsewhere in the processor to avoid damages.
Step 5: Check Your Machine
Lastly, check if the paste dried out anywhere else in the CPU, and apply the same method if found.
Well, this is all the steps of how to clean off old thermal paste.
Clean Thermal Paste: Do I Need To Reapply Thermal paste?
I’ll suggest you to reapply the thermal paste every time you clean the old paste, if you don’t want to face the overheating problems again! Overheating causes automatic shutdowns which you never would like. I mean, who wants a shutdown in the middle of something very important work?
How To Reapply Thermal Paste – Step By Step Solution
Here are the steps of how to reapply the thermal paste in your CPU.
Step 1: Allow To Dry
Before you apply new paste, allow it to dry. Give it some time. Only proceed when it’s completely dried.
Step 2: Apply New Paste
Apply a small bead of a new paste directly on the processor’s surface. Do the same and put the same amount of paste on the copper core of the heatsink. Don’t apply too much of paste, make the bead about the similar size of a rice grain. Don’t worry! That’s enough amount to work!
Step 3: Spread The Paste
Wear the latex gloves and use your fingertip to spread the bead of the paste over the surface. Make sure you’re using a clean and fresh pair of gloves. Don’t spread the paste over the surrounding green area. But if it happens accidentally, you don’t have to freak out! Relax! Your PC will be fine and you won’t face problems running it. You only have to do more cleaning next time, that’s all my friend!
Step 4: Reassemble Your PC
Once you’re done with all the steps above, lock the processor, put the heatsink on it, lock it, and put your computer together. Once you finish with tightening the screws in the cabinet, plug all the parts back and try turning on your PC. It should be running fine.
Should I clean off thermal paste?
It’s always a good practice to clean off the old thermal paste and replace it with new paste.
Can I use water in cleaning thermal paste?
Theoretically, it is okay when the machine is not getting power supply. But in case of water, there’s a higher chance to leave contamination behind after it dries. So it would be better to use rubbing alcohol.
What liquid I can use to clean thermal paste?
Talking about liquids, 99% isopropyl alcohol is recommended to clean thermal paste as it evaporates quickly and doesn’t leave behind any contamination.
Can I use plastic spudger to clean thermal paste?
Yes, you can. But there will be higher chances of other important parts of your processor or PC getting scratched. The paste might not be fully removed too.
Can I use 70 alcohol to clean thermal paste?
Yes you can. Just make sure it evaporates totally before you proceed with reapplying the paste. Just remember you have to use only a tiny dribble and give it time to fully evaporate.
How much thermal paste should I use?
Be very careful while putting thermal paste as it should be of correct amount. Keep the paste about the similar size of a pea or a grain of rice. An insufficient amount of thermal paste might not cover the required surface area in order to be effective.