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Very high temps with i5 2500k, what's causing it?

Last response: in CPUs
January 10, 2013 6:20:12 PM

I have an i5 2500k with a freezer 7 pro rev. 2. I was out of the country for a year and my pc was off the entire time. I returned a few weeks ago and have been using it regularly since. I opened up coretemp a few days ago and noticed that I was getting very high temperature readings under load. It got up to 98 degrees yesterday while I was playing TF2. Before I left the country I was getting between 65-70 degrees max. The idle temperature is about the same as before, around 30 degrees. I assume the temperature has been getting that high since I've been using it, I've only just been monitoring it for the past few days. I haven't had any issues with system stability and it's been running fine even at 90+ degrees, but it can't be safe for my processor.

I thought the thermal paste might be the issue, so I reapplied it this morning. I've never applied thermal paste myself before, but I think I did an acceptable job. I used Arctic Silver Ceramique. I did apply it directly to the CPU instead of the base of the heatsink as it came pre-applied, but I didn't think that would make a difference. Anyway, even after applying it again my temperatures seem the same, if not worse. It's still idling around 30 degrees, but it got up to 92 degrees at not even close to full load. I confirmed the temperature with both coretemp and HWmonitor.

So what exactly is the problem here? Is it possible that it was thermal paste the whole time, and I just did a bad job of applying it and should try again? Could it be something else? I don't see how the heatsink could be sitting incorrectly as that's quite difficult to do with a freezer 7. It's screwed down tightly and securely, the same as it was before I left and was getting normal temperatures. I'm really not sure how to proceed here and would appreciate any advice. Thanks in advance.

a c 188 à CPUs
January 10, 2013 6:31:23 PM

I would guess that the thermal paste has dried out or the blades on the HSF are covered in dust. I would clean the HSF and than reseat it with fresh thermal paste.
January 10, 2013 6:39:36 PM

Thermal paste might be the issue, but even if you applied it poorly, it shouldn't make your cpu go that high.
Could it be that your case airflow is gimped? Have you OC'd your cpu? Just some thoughts here not exactly sure what is going on.
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January 10, 2013 6:58:32 PM

freshtodeath said:
Thermal paste might be the issue, but even if you applied it poorly, it shouldn't make your cpu go that high.
Could it be that your case airflow is gimped? Have you OC'd your cpu? Just some thoughts here not exactly sure what is going on.

My case air flow seems fine, as the other components are registering normal temperatures. I haven't changed my fan setup since before I left when everything was running fine so it shouldn't be the issue. I also haven't overclocked it at all.

I think I have enough thermal paste left to try one more application, I'm going to do that now and see if it changes anything.
January 10, 2013 9:25:03 PM

Well I tried reapplying the thermal paste, it didn't make a difference. It just hit 98 degrees again.

After I applied the new paste and turned it on again, I checked the BIOS and the CPU temperature was at 94 degrees. Is it really possible that it got that hot within a minute of being turned on, without doing anything CPU intensive?
a b à CPUs
January 10, 2013 9:29:11 PM

What paste are you using? & Are you 100% sure the fan is properly mounted? Also, how much paste did you apply?
January 10, 2013 9:36:59 PM

I'm using Arctic Silver Ceramique. The first time I applied it I just spread a light layer over the CPU. The second time I applied a very thin layer to the heatsink (as recommended on AS's website) and made a cross on the CPU.

The fan is mounted properly, and I can't see how the heatsink could be mounted improperly. All 4 pins are securely pushed through the motherboard, and it's screwed down as tight as I can get it. It took a little bit of force to remove the heatsink from the CPU when I was applying it for the second time, so it seems as if it was making good contact.

I may try using the stock fan and heatsink to see if that makes any difference, I just need to buy some more thermal paste first.
a b à CPUs
January 10, 2013 9:45:47 PM

You never ever ever spread paste or do crosses, its blah. Merely put a rice of grain's worth on the CPU, on the middle, then just put the heatsink down. It'll spread naturally, which is the best way. Also, use Arctic MX-4, much better paste.
January 10, 2013 11:00:01 PM

Well I removed the freezer 7 and tried using the stock cooler. Just did one line of paste down the center using what was left of the Ceramique. I just played TF2 for about 15 minutes and my temperature maxed out at 53 degrees, whereas I was hitting 98 within 2 minutes on the old cooler.

I guess that heatsink just can't have been sitting right on the processor, even though I couldn't see how. Anyway, problem solved. Thanks for the help.