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Removing and Re-using a heat sink?

Last response: in Overclocking
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March 15, 2012 3:58:46 AM

In the process of making my computer I did something that was stupid and removed the heat sink fan after installing it. I am using the i5 2500k's stock heat sink fan with preapplied thermal paste. When I took it off I noticed the thermal paste looked still wet and fresh and had begun to spread. There was maybe an hour gap in between putting on an removing the heat sink. Do I need to reapply thermal paste to the stock heatsink, or is this not a concern? If I have to reapply thermal paste, how would I go about doing this?

Edit: This was not meant to go in the overclocking forum; sorry about that. Mods can move this to the appropriate area.

More about : removing heat sink

March 15, 2012 5:34:59 AM

I would just put heatsink back on and check temps,as long as the cpu is cover u should be fine,too much thermal paste can be bad,you only want a light layer on cpu
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March 15, 2012 4:38:27 PM

I am talking about applying new thermal paste, not additional thermal paste. And just to be clear, I was wondering if removing the heat sink an hour after installing it would disrupt the thermal paste such that it would have an impact on cpu temperatures. I have heard stories about air bubbles etc. that have me worried.

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a c 324 K Overclocking
March 15, 2012 7:26:09 PM

When you re-mount the heatsink, it should press out any deformities in the paste and spread it evenly. With this pressure and heat from the CPU during operation, the paste becomes a bit more soft and will smooth itself out even more. If the stock paste is very deformed, you can attempt to spread it evenly before remounting the heatsink, or like you mentioned, you could remove the old, apply new. I've never been a fan of the Intel paste, so I've always just removed it and used my own, but even the pre-applied pad of paste should be fine.

Perfectionists will say, remove and apply new. If you are practical and feel it is fine to re-mount, that should also be fine. The paste is always kind of 'wet' as it shouldn't really dry...thus you'd want to re-spread upon application.
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March 15, 2012 8:02:28 PM

After I removed it, I placed it immediately back on. Would you say it is fine as it?
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a c 324 K Overclocking
March 15, 2012 8:55:01 PM

That's the same thing I would probably have done.
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March 15, 2012 9:59:47 PM

ngc 891 said:
In the process of making my computer I did something that was stupid and removed the heat sink fan after installing it. I am using the i5 2500k's stock heat sink fan with preapplied thermal paste. When I took it off I noticed the thermal paste looked still wet and fresh and had begun to spread. There was maybe an hour gap in between putting on an removing the heat sink. Do I need to reapply thermal paste to the stock heatsink, or is this not a concern? If I have to reapply thermal paste, how would I go about doing this?

Edit: This was not meant to go in the overclocking forum; sorry about that. Mods can move this to the appropriate area.


if uve only taken the heatsink off once id just put it back on. ull lose a some degrees c. but eventually get some thermal compound. then take 99% rubbing alochol and poor a bit on some toilet paper and gently clean off the remaining compound from the cpu and heatsink, reapply the new thermal compound directly in the middle of the cpu and squirting a blob the size of a dime or a tad smaller. reattach heatink.
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March 15, 2012 10:28:07 PM

Best answer selected by ngc 891.
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