CPU thermal Paste

How long does thermal paste last?

Thermal paste plays a crucial role in CPU cooling solutions, facilitating efficient heat transfer between the processor and cooling components. In this article, we delve into the question of how long thermal paste lasts, considering various factors that influence its performance and lifespan.

ROG RG-07 PERFORMANCE THERMAL PASTE | Gaming cooling|ROG - Republic of  Gamers|ROG Global

Key Points:

  1. Function of Thermal Paste:

    • Essential for heat transference between the processor and cooling solution.
    • Fills gaps caused by manufacturing defects to enhance heat dissipation.
  2. Durability of Thermal Paste:

    • Duration depends on the compound and the connection quality between CPU heat spreader and cooler heatsink.
    • More heat cycles and extreme temperatures can expedite degradation.
  3. Pump Out Phenomenon:

    • Occurs due to system power cycles, causing expansion and contraction of surfaces.
    • May lead to the squeezing out of the compound; however, usually not a significant concern.
  4. Factors Influencing Lifespan:

    • Pressure applied during CPU cooler installation affects compound lifespan.
    • Compounds with metal bases generally last longer than those with silicone bases.
    • Operating temperatures and overall heat within the PC case impact the compound's longevity.
  5. Manufacturer Recommendations:

    • Manufacturers specify the efficacy period on official websites and product listings.
    • Changing thermal paste every three years is a recommended safety measure for optimal performance.
  6. Detection of Degradation:

    • Higher CPU temperatures at varying workloads may indicate the onset of thermal paste degradation.
    • Thermal throttling, where the chip slows down at temperature thresholds, can be a sign of degradation.

Choosing the Right Thermal Paste:

  • Consider reputable brands such as Thermal Grizzly and Arctic for replacements.
  • The Arctic MX-6, with a 20% thermal performance uplift, is recommended for modern Intel and AMD processors.

    ARCTIC MX-6 2g Thermal Paste Compound for CPU / Processor

Conclusion: Understanding the lifespan of thermal paste is crucial for maintaining optimal CPU performance. While factors like heat cycles, pressure, and compound composition play roles in degradation, following manufacturer recommendations and regular replacement every three years ensures a consistently efficient cooling solution.

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