How Long Does Thermal Paste Last?

The PC’s main components are the motherboard, graphic card, RAM, etc. When you’re building a PC, did you notice that they give you a tube of thermal paste with the build? Most people are unaware of the purpose of thermal paste, and if you fail to manage it properly, your pc will overheat. The cooler fan won’t be able to handle it, and this will harm your motherboard or processor.

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What Is Thermal Paste?

Thermal paste is also referred to as “thermal grease, thermal gel, thermal interface material, heat sink paste, heat paste, and heat sink compound” that is applied between the processor and the heat sink. The thermal grease function is to aid in heat transfer from the CPU to the heat sink. The heat is subsequently removed from the hardware by the heat sink. This protects the processor from overheating.

If you do not use the thermal gel, it produces air gaps between the processor and the heat sink, reducing the cooling performance of the heat sink and the processor would be overheated if you filled the air gaps by applying thermal grease on the top of the processor and the base of the heat sink, it doesn’t get overheat and the processor gets cool. Some CPU heat sinks have thermal grease pre-applied to them, so you can just install it.

What is Thermal Paste Made Of?

However, GPU is designed specifically for performing the complex mathematical and geometric calculations necessary for graphics rendering, video editing, animations, graphic design, etc. 

There are two kinds of GPU: integrated and dedicated. Integrated graphics cards are built into the computer’s motherboard and share the system’s RAM with the CPU. This graphics card type is best for general use and everyday tasks such as browsing the internet, watching videos, and using Microsoft Office applications.

Dedicated graphics cards have their RAM and processing power. They are much faster than integrated cards and are necessary for intensive tasks such as video editing, 3D rendering, and gaming. Many dedicated cards also come with a cooling system to prevent overheating.

Graphics cards can also be used for gaming. A mid-range graphics card should be sufficient if you’re a casual gamer. However, if you’re a serious gamer, you’ll need a high-end graphics card that can handle the most demanding games.

Yet, some people use graphics cards for cryptocurrency mining. This includes utilizing your PC’s handling ability to assist with checking exchanges on the blockchain. If you’re interested in mining cryptocurrency, you’ll require a strong graphics card to deal with the severe calculations required.

How Long Does Thermal Paste Last?

It depends upon you how much money you spend on the thermal compound. If you buy a high-end thermal compound, it can maintain effectiveness for up to 6-7 years after using it. The manufacturers of thermal paste recommend removing it from your processor and heat sink every 3-5 years. If you buy cheaper thermal grease, it will be used for a 1-2 year maximum, and you need to change it again. Those are some best thermal compounds in 2022 are :

How To Apply Thermal Paste?

First, you need to clean the processor and heat sink surface, wipe the surface of the heat sink softly with a cotton ball or any other clean piece of cloth, and now dampen it with isopropyl alcohol. The higher rate of alcohol is better for cleaning the surface of the heat sink or if you can’t find it, then wipe the heat sink with any clean cloth. If you are building with new components, do not clean the heat sink surface.

Now place a tiny drop of thermal grease in the center of the processor. The pellet of paste should be smaller than a BB or a grain of rice. No need to use more thermal paste; it will damage your processor you can also place the thermal grease in an “X” pattern across the chip, but don’t use too much thermal paste.

The last step is to attach the heat sink to the processor and install the heat sink with the CPU from all sides, and now the heat is applied, the paste will become delicate and spread all over the processor. This is the main reason that we put a small amount of paste. Avoid removing the heat sink when you put thermal compound on it.

Related Article: How Much Ram Do You Need For Gaming?

Advantages and Disadvantages of Using the Thermal Paste


  • Thermal paste keeps your processor cool.
  • It helps to transfer the heat to heat sinks.
  • The thermal gel is affordable.


  • If you don’t use thermal grease, it overheats and damages your processor.
  • The Heat sink could get damaged.
  •  PC gets slow if it overheats.
  • Your build is incomplete if you don’t use thermal gel.


Thermal pastes play a key role in computer cooling by improving heat transmission between the CPU and the cooler. Currently, there are many different thermal compounds on the market. When looking for the best thermal compound to keep any system cool and significantly improve performance, you should research and find the best thermal paste suitable for your computer.

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