How To Clean Thermal Paste Off CPU? Best Way For Dried Paste

Hello everyone! Today I will tell you how to clean thermal paste off CPU components in your computer and what is better to use for this than you can wash it off at home, is it important to do everything right. You can read about how many grams of thermal paste per processor you need here.

how to clean thermal paste off cpu
clean thermal paste off cpu

Should I Clean Off Old Thermal Paste?

Thermal paste, or as it is called, the thermal interface is a special heat-conducting compound that is applied between the processor and the heatsink of the cooler when assembling a computer. Excess heat from the CPU contact plate is transferred to the heatsink and blown out from there by the cooler. This is how an air cooling system works.

Due to the high degree of heating, the composition loses its properties over time. A good composition is enough for about a year or two (it all depends on the composition). At the end of this period, the processor is more likely to warm up slightly more.

This is fraught with hassle for the user: in order to protect an expensive component, the computer will turn off at the most unexpected moment – for example, during a tense moment of passing a computer game or working with applications that are demanding on system resources.

When servicing, it is important to remove the previous layer of thermal interface to ensure good contact of the new compound with the CPU and heatsink. Areas that could not be cleaned will not cool. If they occupy a significant fraction of the area, there is no point in such maintenance: the CPU will still overheat.

How To Clean Thermal Paste Off Cpu?

Isopropyl alcohol is considered by many to be the best compound to wipe off the remnants of old thermal paste. If it is not at hand, you can use cologne or other liquid with a high concentration of ethyl alcohol.

However, keep in mind that window cleaners and all sorts of “Fairies” are not suitable. They are focused primarily on dissolving fat, and thermal paste has slightly different properties. You need to clean the contact pads both from the processor side and from the heatsink side.

If the old thermal interface is carbonized and cannot be removed with a cotton pad or a piece of rag, slightly dampen it with isopropyl alcohol and leave to soak for a few minutes. After the remnants of the substance have softened, you can clean them without much difficulty.

If you don’t have any alcohol-containing liquid at hand, you can use a regular razor blade like “Sputnik” or “Neva”. With its help, you need to carefully scratch off the entire coked composition, but so as not to scratch the contact pads too much.

After you have removed the remnants of the old thermal interface, you can apply a layer of new thermal paste to the CPU.