How To Remove Thermal Paste: All You Need to Know

How to remove thermal paste?

The question indeed makes you frustrated when your central processing unit or CPU overheat often, and you don’t know how to solve it?

Thermal paste is the solution.

But the question here is thermal paste is already placed into your CPU.

Then why remove?

Because it gets dry and becomes useless in general then.

The thermal paste is conductive material used between a cooler and a hot CPU to ensure its temperature remains stable. Either you tend to apply a new thermal paste on your CPU or look to replace the old paste. This guide will teach five steps to remove the thermal paste from your CPU.

how to remove thermal paste from cpu
how to remove thermal paste from cpu

What is Thermal Paste?

Thermal paste is necessary to cool your CPU from the heat it produces. Otherwise, the CPU may get overheated or, worse, damaged. It is a thermally conductive compound that assists in transferring the heat by minimizing or eliminating, in general, to cover the air gaps to ensure a better transfer. When it comes to computers, thermal paste is a block between heat and CPU processors.

How To Remove Thermal Paste?

Putting the thermal paste requires the removal of cleaning off the previous ones. Before starting this process, remove the CPU cooler. The old thermal paste can be seen in colors ranging from white to grey.

  • Note: This step is for CPU, which has already thermal paste

The stuff you need:

  • One microfiber cloth
  • Pair of Cotton swabs
  • Rubbing alcohol
  1. Use the microfiber cloth to remove the thermal paste as much as possible without scratching the surface.
  2. Now time to dip the cotton swab in the rubbing alcohol to remove the stubborn thermal paste strains on the CPU. But be gentle because if you are not, it might scratch the surface. You can also use a plastic spudger for those hardened thermal paste remnants.
  3. Reuse the microfiber cloth to completely wipe out the thermal paste. Moreover, the alcohol will be gone as any liquid would: evaporation.
  4. If any of the thermal paste is still intact in there. Repeat the process mentioned above to make sure it has gone.

Time to Apply the Paste

As the CPU becomes cleaner and cooler, the next step is to put the thermal paste there. The science with thermal paste is they should be applied in a small amount; if you overdo it—you will ruin it.

The stuff you need:

  • Clean, central processing unit or CPU in the motherboard socket
  • Also, a clean CPU cooler
  • Thermal paste
  • One piece of microfiber cloth
  1. The CPU has put the place in the motherboard socket there in it put a small amount or drop of thermal paste there
  2. The next step is effectively putting the CPU cooler in place in the unit to exert pressure on it. The stress that comes with the cooler will quickly spread the thermal paste. However, there is no need to put out the paste first instead of installing the cooler.
  3. As the cooler is wholly installed there, go check the edges of the central processing unit or CPU for any spillover of thermal paste there. If there is, wipe it with a microfiber cloth to clean it.

How to Remove Thermal Paste: Does it Needs to Apply Again and Again

Once the cleaning process is complete, one question needs to be answered: Does the application of thermal paste need to be repeated regularly?

Many experts opined that the application of thermal paste every few years is beneficial to the computer system. In the meantime, the thermal paste in the CPU may last for some time. But as soon as the overheating of the CPU starts to uptick, then it is the red flag. Which effectively means your thermal paste lives over.


In this guide on how to remove the thermal paste, we have properly spelled out the steps for you to easily apply or re-apply the paste on the computer to make it stop from overheating and make your experience worthwhile while using the system.