How often should I reapply thermal paste for my CPU & GPU?(Explained)

Everyone in this discussion claims it has been years since they last one. “I’ve tried a slew of them and change them every three to six months, since even the finest pastes harden with time.

I’m using Thermalright TF8, and it’s doing the same thing”. So in this article, we will cover How often should I reapply thermal paste for my CPU and GPU?

Because I’m a little on the short side, every x hours utilized or every 3–6 months, you should replace the thermal paste as you would the oil in your automobile.

If you don’t play any games or do anything else, they may do it at longer intervals, although cleaning the fans to get the dirt out is also necessary.

How Often Should You Reapply Thermal Paste?

How frequently should you reapply thermal paste on your CPU? It’s a frequent topic spreading out on the internet and one you may be wondering about.

Those who wish to keep their PC as cool as possible may want to learn more about thermal paste, which is one of the various temperatures that can help you do so.

While responses vary depending on who you ask, we believe the exact maximum frequency for reapplying thermal paste is once a year; however, odds are most users won’t have to change it each year. Most individuals can wait four or five years before reapplying new paste to their CPU.

So how can you know when precisely you should update your thermal paste? Please continue reading to find what clues we utilize to determine when to reapply new thermal paste on our CPU.

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When Should You Reapply Thermal Paste?

We tend to assume that the value of thermal paste is frequently exaggerated.

For the most part, a high-quality thermal paste won’t need to be replaced more than once every six months since it won’t have much impact on temperatures or performance during that time.

Therefore, it’s not worth your money or time to continually reapply the thermal paste when you don’t need to!

Reapplying your thermal paste is a good idea every so often. If your PC is running hotter than usual and you haven’t updated your thermal paste in a few years, you might think about reapplying it to the CPU. Thermal paste reapplication to your CPU may be necessary for this situation.

What If I Apply Thermal Paste Frequently?

Overuse of thermal paste has the primary effect of resulting in the waste of excellent thermal paste. You’re also squandering your own time and money on the process.

It’s also important to realize that by opening up and entering inside your PC, you are raising the possibility that you may harm anything if you’re not cautious.

As a result, changing the thermal paste more often than every few years is typically unnecessary.

What Happens If you Don’t Apply Thermal Paste Often Enough?

Your PC’s temperature will rise if you wait too long between temperatures of thermal paste.

It’s unlikely that thermal paste is to blame for your PC’s excessive temperatures, but it may be a practical first step.

Reapplication of the thermal paste may be necessary if it has been more than five years since you last updated it.

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How Much to Apply?

Now that you know how frequently to reapply thermal paste to your CPU, you may be wondering what the perfect amount of thermal paste to apply is.

Again, this is a hotly discussed subject, with many individuals expressing their thoughts on the ideal dosage and application technique.

One encouraging finding from most tests is that many approaches have shown promise. Experts have favored application ways, including an X shape, green pea shape in the middle, grain of rice shape, and spread throughout the Integrated Heat System (IHS) using a business card.

Premium quality thermal past that you need:


Thermal Grizzly Hydronaut - Conductive, High Performance Thermal Paste - Extensive for air Cooling Systems, Water Cooling, for All heatsinks CPU and GPU (7,8 Gram / 3 ml)
Thermal Grizzly Hydronaut – Conductive, High Performance Thermal Paste – Extensive for air Cooling Systems, Water Cooling, for All heatsinks CPU and GPU (7,8 Gram / 3 ml)
View the current price here 

Noctua NT-H1 10g, Pro-Grade Thermal Compound Paste (10g)
Noctua NT-H1 10g, Pro-Grade Thermal Compound Paste (10g)
View the current price here 

Kooling Monster KOLD-01, High Performance Silicone Thermal Paste for Cooling All CPU/GPU/PS4/XBOX/Heatsinks, Designed for Easy Spreading, Inc. Gloves & Cleaning Wipes, No Odor
Kooling Monster KOLD-01, High Performance Silicone Thermal Paste for Cooling All CPU/GPU/PS4/XBOX/Heatsinks, Designed for Easy Spreading, Inc. Gloves & Cleaning Wipes, No Odor
View the current price here 

If You Add Too Much Thermal Paste?

Our experts have suggested that too much thermal paste is worse than none. As a result, we hypothesized that using too much thermal paste would lead to the amount of copper-on-copper contact between the cooler’s cold plate and the IHS.

If You Don’t Apply Enough Thermal Paste?

Since we’ve explored what occurs when you add too much thermal paste, evaluating what will happen if you don’t apply enough thermal paste is essential.

According to tests, you might marginally impact your PC’s temperatures if you use too little thermal paste.

Too little paste certainly won’t substantially boost your temperatures, but for best performance, it’s advised you add enough paste to cover the whole IHS.

 It can leave certain corners of the IHS unprotected. Thermal paste is far more effective at transporting heat than air pockets that form when the IHS is partially exposed.

It may lead to heating and marginally more significant temperatures than when the IHS is coated with the paste. However, this isn’t a significant problem since the cooling temperatures would only be slightly affected.

Overall, the amount of thermal paste you use is common sense. Using excessive paste to coat the whole IHS is a waste of both thermal paste and time. However, a little dot will not be enough to spread throughout the IHS.

To get the best results, use an amount of paste around the size of a green pea or slightly more prominent.

Final Thought

Yes, it may do the job for a while, but after some time, you may observe GPU operating temperatures growing.

So if you have more excellent heat transmission and a longer-lasting product that doesn’t break down after 6-12 months, it’s best to use a high-quality thermal paste.

Related article: 

How Do you apply thermal paste to a CPU?(Explained)

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