How to Replace GPU Thermal Paste

Thermal paste is one of the most important components in your computer because it allows heat to transfer between the CPU and GPU. The heat from the GPU can be so high, especially when rendering dense graphical elements, that it may cause throttling or overheating. Most GPUs are shipped with pre-applied thermal paste, but it can easily wear out and needs to be reapplied or replaced over time. If you don’t replace it properly, the GPU may not be able to cool itself and overheat.

The good news is that it’s not too difficult to re-apply thermal paste to your GPU, and you can do so without taking the card apart. In fact, it’s a lot like replacing the paste on your CPU and requires the same basic equipment. The key is in understanding how to apply the paste correctly, and there are a lot of guides out there on what to do.

Some of them recommend using a pea-sized amount of thermal paste spread across the area for which it’s intended. If you use too much, the paste might glob up or clog the area and make it hard for the cooler to sit flat against the GPU die.

Other tips include increasing the thermal paste’s temperature by holding it in your hands before applying it. This helps it to be more malleable so that it can spread evenly onto the GPU die. There are also a number of ways to apply the paste, including a central blob or a sausage-style vertical line. Igor Wallossek from Igor’s Lab put the different methods to the test and found that the sausage style was a clear winner with about a five degree Celsius improvement over other methods. GPU thermal paste

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