What Happens If a PC Runs Without Thermal Paste?

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By Linda | Follow | Last Updated September 8, 2023

Can a PC tally without thermal paste? How to use thermal paste to nan CPU and GPU? This station from MiniTool Partition Wizard gives you nan answer. It besides answers immoderate questions related to thermal paste.

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What Is Thermal Paste?

Thermal paste (also called thermal compound, thermal grease, thermal interface worldly (TIM), thermal gel, power paste, power descend compound, power descend paste, aliases CPU grease) is simply a thermally conductive (but usually electrically insulating) chemic compound.

It is commonly utilized arsenic an interface betwixt power sinks (CPU coolers) and power sources (CPUs and GPUs). The main domiciled of thermal paste is to destruct aerial gaps aliases spaces (which enactment arsenic thermal insulation) from nan interface area successful bid to maximize power transportation and dissipation.

Can a PC Run Without Thermal Paste?

In general, I urge you not to do so. If you tally a PC without thermal paste, nan CPU and GPU will get overheated soon because they won’t beryllium capable to dissipate power effectively.

Then, you whitethorn extremity up pinch nan pursuing situations:

  1. Your computer’s capacity will throttle because it reaches unsafe temperatures.
  2. Your machine will unopen down randomly to cool down aliases you mightiness spot nan bluish surface of death.
  3. If you are unlucky, your CPU aliases GPU is melted and damaged permanently.

How to Apply Thermal Paste connected CPU and GPU

If you announcement that nan somesthesia of nan CPU and GPU is higher than it should beryllium and nan PC capacity is affected, it’s clip to switch nan thermal paste. How to use nan thermal paste to nan CPU and GPU? Here is nan guide.

For your CPU:

  1. Open up your computer’s case.
  2. Lift nan power descend from nan apical of nan CPU.
  3. Remove nan aged thermal paste (if any) from nan CPU arsenic good arsenic nan power sink.
  4. Grab your caller thermal paste and use it utilizing your preferred exertion method.
  5. Make judge to get a bladed and moreover furniture of thermal paste.
  6. When you person nan cleanable furniture applied, put nan power descend backmost connected apical of nan CPU.
  7. Close your computer’s casing and commencement utilizing it arsenic usual.


Don’t use nan paste connected nan CPU successful a bulk quantity. Otherwise, it will driblet connected nan committee aft you instal nan banal cooler. Then, nan paste connected nan committee will interrupt its moving aliases harm your motherboard.

For your GPU:

  1. Disassemble your GPU by taking disconnected nan screws, removing nan apical plate, disconnecting nan instrumentality cable, and removing nan cover.
  2. Remove nan heatsink and nan aged thermal paste.
  3. Apply nan thermal paste and reassemble your GPU.
  4. Put it backmost connected your PC and commencement utilizing it arsenic usual.

Q1. How Often Do You Need to Replace nan Thermal Paste?

A normal personification who doesn't do immoderate dense tasks connected their machine doesn't request to switch thermal paste very often. However, if you play games connected your machine regularly, it will barren retired nan thermal paste faster. Then, it's recommended to switch nan thermal paste connected nan CPU each 1-1.5 years and nan thermal paste connected nan GPU each 3-5 years.

Q2. Are There Alternatives to nan Thermal Paste?

If you person nary thermal paste, you tin usage toothpaste arsenic an alternative. However, nan toothpaste connected nan processor could only activity for a fewer days astir 5 to 10 days. Therefore, a dedicated thermal paste is recommended. In addition, nan thermal paste is not expensive.

Bottom Line

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About The Author


Position: Columnist

Linda has been moving arsenic an editor astatine MiniTool for 5 years. She is ever funny astir machine knowledge and learns it crazily. Her articles are elemental and easy to understand. Even group who do not understand machine tin summation something. By nan way, her typical focuses are disk management, information betterment and PDF editing.

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