Quote: Originally Posted by bobkn
Quote: Originally Posted by TVeblen
So even if you are using the expensive electrically conductive stuff the potential for short circuiting the processor with it is large.
I'm trying to decipher this, without success.
Most thermal compounds don't use conductive components. The cheap stuff is silicone oil plus zinc oxide.
If aman113 is using Arctic Silver or one of its clones, maybe the risk in cleaning it would be justified.
If it's a purely dielectric compound (like Arctic Silver Ceramique), don't bother. The Arctic Silver web pages only warn about "bridging" for the silver-based stuff.
There are two potential problems that can be caused by thermal paste on the pins of the processor.
- If the thermal paste is non-conductive it can interfere with the electrical connection from the pin to it's socket.
- If the thermal paste is electrically conductive then it could bridge the gap between two pins and result in a short circuit (in the classical sense - meaning the electricity does not follow it's intended circuit path.)
Neither problem needs to result in fireworks. More likely it will result in random errata.
I would clean the paste off the pins before I would install the processor in my computer. My logic is simple (like my mind):
- No one would ever recommend applying thermal paste to the pins.
- So if you got some on the pins it should be cleaned off.
Cleaning electronic parts with a toothbrush is a time tested method. It will not damage the pins unless you press so hard that the plastic handle is pushing into the pins (don't do that).
For the OP: if you have installed the processor already and it is working fine then forget about it. It's done. It works. Leave it alone.