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Can I use heat paste in place of thin thermal transfer tape?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I took apart my GPU (ASUS Radeon HD5850, reference board) to lube the fan and repaste it, but it turns out some the chips had thermal tape between them and the heat spreader, about 0.5mm in thickness, definitely no more than 1mm. Can I just stick some heat paste on them and call it a day, or does it need to be replaced with proper tape?

The paste in question is OCZ Freeze (old, ik, but I still haven't used it all).
post #2 of 11
With a gap that small you might be able to get away with it, but in most cases you run the risk of creating air bubbles. Make sure to be very careful about how much paste you use- that will be the make or break.
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post #3 of 11
Is it not possible to reuse the same thermal pads?
post #4 of 11
Why can't you just use the old pads?
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
The old stuff was dry, cracking and literally flaking off, I don't think it would've been of much use so I scraped it off.
post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by bomfunk View Post

The old stuff was dry, cracking and literally flaking off, I don't think it would've been of much use so I scraped it off.

I don't know why, but that makes me want to cry.
Yeah just give it a good load of thermal paste, I think it should fill any gaps left from the pads.
post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by bomfunk View Post

I took apart my GPU (ASUS Radeon HD5850, reference board) to lube the fan and repaste it, but it turns out some the chips had thermal tape between them and the heat spreader, about 0.5mm in thickness, definitely no more than 1mm. Can I just stick some heat paste on them and call it a day, or does it need to be replaced with proper tape?

The paste in question is OCZ Freeze (old, ik, but I still haven't used it all).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Account Banned View Post

I don't know why, but that makes me want to cry.
Yeah just give it a good load of thermal paste, I think it should fill any gaps left from the pads.

I'd bet the paste would flow right out when the card gets hot.
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post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by BulletSponge View Post


I'd bet the paste would flow right out when the card gets hot.

Not if it is thick enough... I'm a big fan of using lots of TIM, but I've never seen it flow away, no matter the orientation. And when it get's hot it hardens... so your statement is kind of counter-intuitive.
post #9 of 11
Tap hold the heatsinks in place. Paste does not.
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
The heatsink (just a metal bracket, really, separate from the actual GPU heatsink) is screwed on so all I'm worried about is bridging the gap.
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