does thermal grease go bad?

Discussion in 'CPUs and Overclocking' started by thejez, Dec 14, 2007.

  1. thejez

    thejez Member

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    I have an old tube of thermal grease (like 4 years old)... is it still good?
     
  2. Pain999

    Pain999 Member

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    What kind? Arctic Silver or other good quality stuff would certainly still be fine. Does not really go bad without use, but more likely outdated in terms of performance compared to newer technology.
     
  3. raduga

    raduga Junior Member

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    And how long does AS last when it's "installed" on the chip?
     
  4. sutahz

    sutahz Golden Member

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    This sounds like a question you should email the mfg'r about directly. But its a grease so.. when was the last time you heard of silicon grease going bad?
     
  5. GrumpyMan

    GrumpyMan Diamond Member

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    Yeah, I still have some KY from 1977.........
     
  6. lenjack

    lenjack Platinum Member

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    Does not go bad.
     
  7. sutahz

    sutahz Golden Member

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    So has it gone bad? (KY jelly is water based as I'm sure you know, you were just trying to cut me down to make yourself look better or what have you. With that, im sure KY doesn't go bad either. Its a jelly not a grease, water based not silicon based)
     
  8. taltamir

    taltamir Lifer

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    going bad happens either through chemical decomposition or biological decomposition... biological is when bacteria, tiny multi cellular organisms, and fungi digest something... this does NOT occur with thermal paste.
    Chemical decomposition happens when something is enough to break the chemical bonds... The two most common causes of chemical decomposition are heat, and UV radiation. A third form is reaction with surrounding chemicals... for example oxygen in the air can react with certain metals (eh, rusting on iron), but without a specific catalyst (ex, water for rusting) it could easily take thousands of years.

    We can rule out UV, The Thermal paste in the CENTER of the heatsink is pressured into tiny molecular grooves on the heatsink and CPU providing improved contact, there is should not be exposed to oxygen. Regardless quality thermal paste would be resistance to oxydation (tarnishing for silver) so only heat remain. Weather heat caused chemical decomposition on your thermal paste entirely depends on the specific composition of the thermal paste. I doubt you would have any such decomposition with arctic silver, but if you used some a pad (the ones with the consistency of plastic) or a cheap chinese immitation then it might have (i bought some AS in compUSA that turned out to be just that... it shorted out my CPU, turns out it was electrically conductive).
    Those might still be resistant to such things for all I know, I just would TRUST them to be like I would arctic silver.

    When milk goes bad it is because bacteria is living, eating, shitting and dying in it.
    When glue goes bad it is because it is SUPPOSED to react with air to form an adhesive bond, and it just happens prematures while still in the tube.
    Thermal paste on the other hand, is supposed to stay inert at all time.

    Are you experiencing problems or are you just curious?
     
  9. GrumpyMan

    GrumpyMan Diamond Member

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    It's called a joke...........sheesh.
     
  10. taltamir

    taltamir Lifer

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    I thought astroglide was special because it is water base... are you telling me KY is also water based.... what does water based even MEANS... i mean, my toothpaste, shaving gel, hair conditioner, and perfume (sorry, "cologne" because I am man X.X) all have water in them.
     
  11. Arcanedeath

    Arcanedeath Platinum Member

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    Artic Silver 5 will go bad if you let it sit to long the silver particles are suspended in a liquid and they settle out if its left to sit for years, your average white goop or something like Artic Cermique doesn't typicaly go bad from just sitting as its inorganic.
     
  12. BonzaiDuck

    BonzaiDuck Lifer

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    Arctic Silver 5, and similar, silver-based greases or pastes, decline in effectiveness over time once they are used. You may not notice it too much, but they do.

    AS 5 is good stuff, to be sure. And also, I hate to plug another product. But for the money, I really think you and everyone else should just dump AS 5 and move to a nano-diamond-based thermal compound with a high percentage particle loading.

    JetArt's CK-4800 is only 10% synthetic micronized diamond, and therefore only equal in effectiveness to AS-5. But it's . . . . OK . . . .

    Even so, I recommend this:

    IC Diamond @ $4.99 per tube, 95% particle loading -- from Innovation Cooling

    In the "Cases and Cooling" forum, I did some fairly controlled and rigorous testing with IC Diamond and my own concoction:

    CK-4800 as a "base" with micronized synthetic diamond powder from Penn-Scientific (< 2 micron AVERAGE particle-size)

    Both formulations gave the same result: a 2 to 3C degree reduction in load temperatures at the same room-ambient for an E6600 processor over-clocked to about 3.3 Ghz -- as opposed to Arctic Silver 5. I took averages of CoreTemp load values in 8-second-intervals over several hours, with AS5, IC Diamond, and my "custom" mixture -- at controlled room-ambient. I do not know the precise thermal design power (TDP) for that over-clock setting, but it was a controlled constant, as was the room-ambient.

    Diamond-based thermal compounds do not degrade over time. Goes without saying that diamond has a much lower thermal resistance and higher thermal conductivity -- a stunning difference -- over silver. And -- believe it or not -- the residue can be re-used. With the IC Diamond, which has an oil base that slightly evaporates, you can add a touch of CK-4800 after scraping the residue off the heatsink base and processor cap for re-application.

    The diamond pastes are completely inert, with no electrical conductivity and no capacitance. You can make a messy application with no risk of residue damaging your components.

    The tube of IC Diamond is good for about three to four applications. Three applications if you include your VGA GPU.
     
  13. taltamir

    taltamir Lifer

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    WOW, DIAMOND COOLING!
    I never heard of it but that is definitely neat... I gotta try it, with gold plated contacts and diamond cooling my PC will be bling bling :p

    No seriously though, this does sound awesome...

    Mmm, lemme look up some reviews:
    http://www.cluboverclocker.com...ste_roundup2/index.asp
    This one says that the diamond dust thingie performs worst of all, but they could not apply it as directed due to its consistancy...
    AS5 WITHOUT allowing it to set down won on Idle temps but a HUGE margin vs everything else, but lost by a little at 100% usage... at which the best performances was the cool silver by AI tech (AS direct competitor), the arctic ceramic, and then the intel STOCK paste... X.X

    I am having a really hard time finding more reviews that then single one...
     
  14. BonzaiDuck

    BonzaiDuck Lifer

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    You can trust the method and results at www.overclockers.com and Joe Citarella's work.

    Loke for a January 20, 2007 article on tests before IC Diamond was released.

    There are some other good thermal pastes out there, but I haven't tested them myself.

    what I DO know is based on my own tests with IC Diamond versus AS 5. My tests were completely consistent with the published benchtests with IC Diamond. Their benches show about a 5F improvement. This is consistent with my 2 to 3C improvement in my own tests.

    The diamond stuff only became available last year and earlier this year -- first with CK-4800 and then with the IC-Diamond product. I know there are other metallic formulations, but I am very satisfied -- either to use CK-4800 with my own diamond powder (I have plenty and more than I needed when I was "testing") -- or with the IC Diamond. I won't go back to AS 5 unless I'm caught unsupplied or without the diamond-based compound in an emergency.

    I LOOKED at the link for the club-overclockers review. They didn't apply it correctly. I have no stock in Inno Cooling, and I"m not hyping something that doesn't work. I have no idea how their results are not consistent with either mine, Citarella's or Inno Cooling, but you can't short me on scientific method -- I took thousands of CoreTemp 8-second-interval samples and used a digital thermometer to monitor room-ambient and control it.

    The averages and standard error around the means confirm the cooling improvement I cited over AS5.

    There's always the possibility that with some reviewers, a "fix is in" and the age of payola did not just end with radio-stations in the 1950s.
     
  15. j0j081

    j0j081 Banned

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    I had some last night that was disgusting. I am still puking about every other hour or so.
     
  16. BonzaiDuck

    BonzaiDuck Lifer

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    LOL, JoJo!!

    Do you mean:

    a) You ate some thermal paste
    b) You drank some cologne
    c) You mixed some sour milk in your holiday hot-toddy
    or
    d) Payola gives you the runs, and you need some Pepto-biz or Kaopectate?

    :laugh:
     
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