dslreports logo

    All FAQs Site FAQ DSL FAQ Cable Tech About DSL Distance DSL Hurdles »»


how-to block ads

2.5 Heat Sinks/Fans/Cooling

Whether you choose to use Arctic Silver, or another thermal compound, excellent directions can be found at the Arctic Silver web site, complete with pictures:


by dbmaven See Profile

Begin by shutting the PC down, unplugging the power cord from the back of the case, and then placing your computer down in a work area where you can spread out your materials.

You will need either one or the other of the following; however, it is also OK to use both:

    •Arctic Silver (known as "thermal grease")

    •Thermal Pads

Start by removing the heat-sink (HSF) carefully. Use a screwdriver to press down on the clip that's locking it in place, but be careful, please. If you press too hard you can damage the top of the CPU core, or worse -- you can put a dent or hole in your motherboard because the screwdriver can slip off that clip very easily. (Edit: For this reason, many HSF manufacturers recommend using a small socket driver as opposed to a screwdriver. A socket is much less likely to slip, and does not have the sharp edge of a screwdriver if it does.)

Once you remove the HSF, you've broken the "air" gap (or lack of one) between the bottom of the HSF and the CPU core. At this point you need to remove the chip as well and clean the top of the core.

Start by applying a little bit of isopropyl alcohol to a paper towel and removing the grease that's already there. Once this is done, you can use a fresh paper towel, wet a tiny edge of it with water, then place a teeny-tiny drop of dish-washing liquid on the paper towel (make some suds) and then clean the CPU only with this. It's OK if the ceramic gets wet - just don't get the pins wet underneath the chip. Then, get another clean paper towel, dip it in isopropyl alcohol and clean the top of the chip again.

The CPU core is all clean now and ready for Arctic Silver.

You may also have the used thermal pad or thermal grease on the bottom of the HSF that needs to be removed. If it's a thermal pad, use a clean razor blade and carefully scrape off the thermal pad from the bottom of the HSF, being very careful not to scrape the surface. Once the thermal pad has been completely removed, put some isopropyl alcohol on a paper towel and now clean the bottom of the heat-sink to remove any remaining fragments of "pad."

If it's just old thermal grease, use some isopropyl alcohol on a paper towel to wipe it up. Now you are ready to apply a new thermal pad or apply new thermal grease to the HSF.

Now to put everything back together.

First, apply a small amount of Arctic Silver to the top of the CPU core (only a tiny bit, half the size of a grain of rice, spread it evenly and carefully over the top of the CPU core using a clean razor blade). CPU is now treated and can be placed back in the socket and locked in.

After cleaning the bottom of the HSF (either by removing the old thermal grease or thermal pad as outlined above), re-apply a new thermal pad, or if using thermal grease, place a little bit on the bottom of the HSF and then work it into the bottom by placing your fingers inside a clear plastic sandwich bag. Use counter clockwise and clockwise motions. Once finished, remove any excess with a paper towel (it should leave a grey film -- that's OK).

Now you're ready to put the HSF back on top of the CPU.

Place the HSF back down on the CPU core, gently - don't rock or twist the fan. If you rock or twist the HSF, you can either damage the CPU core or you will not be creating a solid connecting between the bottom of the HSF and CPU core.

Then gently re-attach the clip to the side of the socket and you should be good to go.

Remember, the final goal here is to remove the "air gap" between the bottom of the HSF and CPU core. By doing this, you will be channeling all of that cool air through the HSF and directly onto the CPU core.

by Garbs See Profile edited by dbmaven See Profile
last modified: 2005-06-22 03:22:05

what you can try to do is to lubricate the bearings in it.

-unscrew the fan from where it is mounted

-find the sticker that is on the center of the fan (usually has the brand name of the fan and some speed and or voltage info on it) carefully peel of that sticker.

-under that should be a little circular plug (made of a soft plastic usually) pop that out with a small flathead screwdriver.

-now your looking at the bearing of your fan (be careful not to let any dirt get in there) you will need to get some form of liquid lubricant, something with teflon in it will be great (comes in aerosol cans usually)

-take your lubricant and put a few drops in there, be careful not to use too much these are small bearings so they dont need much.

-now simply replace the plug and the sticker and your fan should be sounding better, and hopefully last a bit longer now.

by Axilla See Profile edited by dbmaven See Profile
last modified: 2003-09-05 10:45:38

Azzo Computers
PC Power and Cooling

Links provided by Transitman

by Cariad See Profile edited by dbmaven See Profile
last modified: 2003-09-05 11:11:16