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How to Clean Thermal Paste Off CPU? [Best Way To Remove Thermal Paste in 2024]

Working on the computer for a long time is always heats up the entire components inside. Once you start using the computer for a long time, it always starts heating up the internal components. This can always raise multiple issues to the technical components of the product.

Nerds do know about the presence of heat sinks inside the PC vents, as it helps to keep the processor running well and it prevents any type of overheating. The thermal paste inside the computer keeps all the parts together. Once the computer starts heating up, the gum inside starts drying as well.

how to clean thermal paste off cpu

Technically, the thermal paste acts as a complete protection which is responsible for heat conductivity inside the computer! This is why the thermal paste needs to be repaired after a certain time. The paste dries out and replacing it is not at all a big task at all.

Most of the professionals require just a few minutes to complete the repair process. This is why, asking for a professional to do your job will always be the first thing. If you do not want to spend so much on replacing the thermal paste, this guide on how to clean thermal paste off CPU will always help you to get the desired results.

In a computer, the heatsink is a part of the computer that sits within the CPU. In simple words, it is a metal sheet that sits on top of any chip installed within the computer. It is basically present to hold these computer parts in a particular position.

Heatsinks are needed to allow the CPU to stay cool. When there is a high rise in the temperature, the heatsink as a cooler for the CPU.

It prevents the internal components that come into direct contact with the heatsink from making strong contact with the chips present in order to maximize the cooling. It works simple and may always help you to gain a standard temperature within the heater.

What Do You Need?

Removing the thermal paste from the CPU is always a big ask for anyone! However, if you always have the right equipment available with yourself, it is much easier to remove the thermal paste from the CPU. However, there are a few components you must include if you wish to remove the thermal paste.

To start off the list, the first thing that you will need the most is a microfiber cloth. This is mainly because you have to clean the entire CPU. If you use some alternatives like a paper towel, it has slight chances of leaving back residue.

Ofcourse, you would not want these things to happen at such stages. This is why picking up the microfiber cloth could be a major benefit. Another reason why you can choose the microfiber cloth is because it will allow you to clean up the entire CPU in just a few minutes of time.

The next thing to look out for is a cleaner that will help you to clean up the thermal paste that is present. While choosing the liquid you need to be certain about the solution of the components. You would not like to have a solution that does not evaporate at all. This is why, we recommend using 99% of isopropyl alcohol that will evaporate immediately. This will not leave any type of residue at all.

However, there may be chances that you do not get a permit to buy this. Infact, in such situations, it is not safe at all to just apply any other type of solution from home. Instead, you should go with the one that is perfect for such situations.

Arctic Silver’s ArctiClean could be one of the best options to go for in such a situation. It is a specialized chemical that is prepared for as a thermal paste remover. You won’t have to apply any other chemical if you have this awesome solution. It is a simple process with this solution and it gives you a proper result as well.

ArctiClean – Thermal Paste Remover [How to Clean Thermal Paste Off CPU?]

Another impressive product on the list is the ArctiClean that can prevent any type of debris from forming on the computer parts. In simple words, it keeps a shield on the motherboard that will prevent any type of rust or residue formation on this.

For more protection, you can take the help of an anti-static bracelet. Although it is not necessary to have one, you can still purchase a bracelet at a cheap rate.

They actually help to prevent any type of static to form in the body. As a result, the motherboard is always protected from all the sides.

Steps to Clean the Thermal Paste

Part I: Taking the precautions

1. To start off the procedure, the first thing that you need to do is to turn off the power. It’s better to always turn it off from the computer first and then from the main power connection.

Simply shut down the computer and then switch it off from the main power cable connection. Only shutting it down from the CPU will still not prevent power supply to the motherboard.

2. Once you are done with this, the next thing that you need to do is to plug out the cables. Look for all the cables and wires attached to the CPU.

There should be multiple ones including a power cord, an HDMI cable to the monitor or even an external cord to the UPS. Pull them out one by one to make sure that it is completely free to operate with.

3. Now, you are free to take out the battery in case you are using a laptop or the CPU. In the case of a laptop, you need to flip it over completely. There should be an unlock button available which allows you to remove the battery from the back and then take it out.

4. The next thing that you need to do is to discharge the electrons that are still present. Even when you remove the power cord and the battery, there is still some amount of electricity left inside the components. It is important that you discharge them. Press the power button for ten seconds to discharge the residue. This will allow you to work with the CPU further.

5. Now it is the time to get started to work with the components of the CPU. This is why a safety great protection becomes so important. you can take help of anti-static bracelets to prevent any type of residue. Before anything, wear a pair of gloves to start the work. This will prevent any type of oil from your skin to come and be glued to the motherboard.

6. Now the CPU is completely separated. It is always recommended to work in a completely dust-free environment. If your room is not completely dust-free, it is always better to move out with this product. Try to always work in an area that is completely clean or properly sanitized in all the parts.

Part II: Removing the paste [How to Remove Thermal Paste?]

1. The next step that you need to take care of is to open up the manual. Even if you know all about the product inside and out, it is important to have the owner manual for the reference.

Ofcourse, you need to get an idea about the heatsink inside and that could only be done with the help of the manufacturer’s copy. Without this, it will not be possible.

2. Next up, you need to start out dusting. take the help of a small brush with light features. Gradually, move the brush around the product for swift cleaning as well Try to be away from the computer as it will allow you to get complete control of the product. Remove the dust thoroughly.

3. Once the dusting is one, you need to take out the old paste. To do this, you can take help of a scrapper or dry cloth and run it around the motherboard.

This will slightly loosen up the parts and the accessories present inside the computer. In this way, you will be able to remove the old paste completely.

4. After removing the old paste, there will be some residue left. Apply the same technique as you used it to remove the paste. This will allow you to completely remove the paste from the CPU and you will be free. You can also take the help of some Q-tips to get the procedure done neatly.

5. Now the motherboard is done and you will have to check the other parts of the cpu as well. You can try out the same strategy with the processor that is attached to the motherboard. However, you need to be very delicate while doing this.


The thermal paste inside the CPU could be dried up when you go on to replace it. Without taking proper precautions, you won’t be able to replace the thermal paste that is dried inside. Remember, that cleaning the thermal paste always requires a professional hand.

This is mainly because there are multiple parts within the CPU requiring a delicate hand to perform as well. If you plug out the internal components too hard, the parts within the CPU will break. It is important to follow all the instructions step by step and come up with removal of thermal paste. We hope that this how to clean thermal paste off CPU article will help you to complete the entire procedure in a few steps.