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Old 03-23-2009, 06:54 AM   #1
TheNiceGuy
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Default Reuse thermal compound?

I'm replacing my MB with an identicle one. Can I reuse the thermal paste, just pull the CPU off and stick all together on the new MB?
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Old 03-23-2009, 07:38 AM   #2
ch33zw1z
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Default Reuse thermal compound?

If the paste doesn't get dirty with dust or anything then it will be fine. If it's dirty at all, best practice is to reapply.
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Old 03-23-2009, 09:16 AM   #3
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Default Reuse thermal compound?

You shouldn't have that much spread on your surfaces to reuse
- apply it thinly!

and i would personlly not reuse it; especially if it was "old" .. some paste tends to dry out .. and it is SO cheap, it is worth having an extra tube
- watch your temps; if you don't OC is is probably not critical to reuse it
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Old 03-23-2009, 12:01 PM   #4
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Default Reuse thermal compound?

Quote:
Originally posted by: apoppin
You shouldn't have that much spread on your surfaces to reuse
- apply it thinly!

and i would personlly not reuse it; especially if it was "old" .. some paste tends to dry out .. and it is SO cheap, it is worth having an extra tube
- watch your temps; if you don't OC is is probably not critical to reuse it
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Old 03-23-2009, 12:35 PM   #5
aigomorla
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Default Reuse thermal compound?

ummm...

no, reapply.

Dont reuse.

Each time you pull that sink off after its been used the tim had a cure time which u ate into.

If it cured partially and you placed a new sink on top you will get micro bubble areas.

So in short, no, always reapply after you pulled the sink off.
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Old 03-23-2009, 02:12 PM   #6
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Default Reuse thermal compound?

Reusing TIM is like reusing old underwear, just wash it and start over.
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Old 03-23-2009, 02:42 PM   #7
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Default Reuse thermal compound?

I've re-used AMD heatpipe heatsinks that had the thermal paste pre-applied. There's usually a generous amount, and if I'm moving the same CPU+heatsink combo to another board, I don't bother to reapply as long as there is enough. (Edit: This is in cases in which I was just running the CPU at stock. If I planned big overclocks, I might re-apply just to be safe.)


OTOH, if I was using an Intel heatsink with the pre-applied paste, or using AS5, I would always clean the surface and re-apply.
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Old 03-23-2009, 02:48 PM   #8
BonzaiDuck
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Default Reuse thermal compound?

AS5 degrades over time, anyway.

You can re-use diamond thermal paste, but I recommend applying a small amount of regular silicon-grease to it, because the commercial stuff dries out a bit.

Frankly, I just wouldn't do it -- even with diamond paste. Better to clean it all with isopropyl and apply new paste.
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Old 03-23-2009, 05:27 PM   #9
VirtualLarry
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Default Reuse thermal compound?

Quote:
Originally posted by: BonzaiDuck
AS5 degrades over time, anyway.
Not nearly as fast as plain white paste/grease. That stuff dries out in like a year or two, and then it turns hard like a rock, and it's impossible to remove from the processor.

OTOH, I've never had that problem with AS5.

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