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[Solved] Can I re-use unset thermal paste? - Page 2

post #11 of 24
You can pull off a sink and reseat it, if you do it relatively quickly ... say within 30 minutes ... but I would advise against anything over 10 minutes.

Once thermal past "cures" (after about 24-48 hours of heat), it will be done. You can't reuse it.
post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 
Well, that's the thing. No heat has been used. How would the paste "cure" without it? Whats the difference between paste unused (no heat) in the bottle, and paste unused on the top of the CPU and bottom of the H100?
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post #13 of 24
Thread Starter 
I feel like the paste hasn't cured because there is no heat. Yes, there is plenty of paste. Shouldn't scraping it off and reapplying mitigate the risk of air bubbles? Should I scrape, clean with alcohol and then reapply?
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post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Runamok81 View Post

Well, that's the thing. No heat has been used. How would the paste "cure" without it? Whats the difference between paste unused (no heat) in the bottle, and paste unused on the top of the CPU and bottom of the H100?

Heat is only part of the equation. Exposure to air is the other. In a tube, only the part near the tip of the needle is exposed to air, and generally, when I apply paste, I squirt out a little bit and throw that away. Then I use the next 3-4mm of the paste since air hasn't gotten to it yet.

But once it is out in the air and applied to the metal, it will start to dry out because of the contact with that air. It's not like it happens instantly, and maybe it will take a day or three, but since thermal paste is so cheap, if I applied it and walked away from it for a day, and I took the heat sink off, I wouldn't risk it, I'd just wipe it off and start over.

How much time are we talking about in your case?
post #15 of 24
Thread Starter 
How much time? Oh sir, you underestimate my laziness. sleepysmileyanim.gif

But I think your comment about the paste "drying" may have put me over the edge. I'll go rummage around for the A5.... wheee.gif
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post #16 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kylepdalton View Post

Here is the thing. Yes you can just stick it back together and it will work. As others have mentioned though it isn't advisable though because of the air bubbles. My advice though would be to just clean it off the block and spread it thin with a card on the cpu. They generally apply to much anyways with the Hydro series.
No difference between whats in the bottle and what is on the blocks. The only time it would matter if it is thermal glue rather just paste in which it has a cure time and hardens at a certain time. As a heads up I believe they are still using Shin-Etsu on the Hydro series which is a great thermal paste.

Spot on, just make sure there's enough smeared off to distribute evenly and properly on there.

Spending $15 on another tube would be much more worth it though imo. No need to worry that way!
post #17 of 24
What is the point of saving the paste? I mean sure you can, but there is really no point if you have an actual tube laying around.
post #18 of 24
I never do and I never suggest doing it....
 
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post #19 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thread title and first post updated.

Update: The thread consensus is, no you can't. Even though heat has not "cured" the paste, exposure to air (24hrs+) may have dried it. This will make re-application difficult to remove air bubbles. Expect slightly higher temps.

To those who are OCD.. earmuffs. ... If I don't find that A5 I might shamefully try and get by with re-application. devil-smiley-019.gif
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post #20 of 24
No need to worry about drying in your time span. It does dry a bit but different pastes dry at different amounts of time. That Shin-Etsu could be left for quite some time. I've left it exposed for about 8 hours and not had a problem with it. AS5 on the other hand starts getting crusty for me at 2 hours. If you do go about cleaning either one surface or both use alcohol to remove it completely.
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