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How Long Does Thermal Paste Take To Dry?

How long does it take for thermal paste to dry?” The solution is simple and just takes a few minutes. The query will be answered in this blog post. However, there are a few things to keep in mind before estimating how long your paste will take to dry. The temperature of the room, the humidity in the air, and the adhesive substance utilized for your thermal compound are all factors to consider. A layer of the thermal compound takes at least one hour or two hours to dry. The “paper towel test” can be used to determine how dry it is. Apply some pressure to the thermal paste with a paper towel, and if liquid seeps out, your system may leak.

Is your CPU cooler in need of repair? When it’s time to put everything all together, you’ll need to reapply thermal paste. Most individuals, however, have one question before applying the paste: how long does thermal paste take to dry?

Most people misunderstand thermal paste for the stickiness that is used to join paper strips together. That, however, is not the case. Thermal paste or grease is an adhesive, but it also serves as a cooling component. After all, it’s what connects the heatsink with the CPU cooler. As a result, it guarantees that proper cooling is achieved. This paste prevents hot air from entering the gap between the two components and further damaging the CPU.

Because it’s not a standard adhesive, it won’t dry as quickly as a regular one. It takes a long time for thermal paste to dry. Even after being used for a long time, it remains mushy and flexible. As a result, there’s no need to waste time sitting around waiting for it to dry. Even if you don’t let your CPU dry or sit, it will be OK and perform properly.

How Long Does Thermal Paste Take To Dry

Too Much Thermal Paste

When you use too much paste, you get a lot of thermal resistance, which defeats the objective of utilizing thermal compounds.

A lot of paste results in a lot of thermal resistance. This defeats the purpose of using the thermal compound in the first place, which was to reduce contact and improve heat transfer between components by filling in existing gaps.

To help dissipate heat away from each component, too much thermal paste restricts airflow across CPU or GPU surfaces.

When Should Thermal Grease/Paste Be Replaced?

Thermal paste does not need to be replaced very often. In reality, performing it once a year is plenty. Understand that there are various types of thermal pastes, each with its own set of thermal connections. As a result, the greater the connectivity rate, the faster you’ll have to reapply it. It’s worth noting that liquid pastes, rather than non-metallic compounds, are superior at transmitting CPU heat. It has also been discovered that non-metallic pastes must be reapplied first.

This is because, after months of use, the paste will dry out and break. This occurs now as a result of the CPU’s hot air. As a result, you should now know that ‘drying’ thermal paste isn’t a good thing. It’s best not to dry the paste at all. If you don’t repeat thermal grease or paste, your computer may begin to malfunction because it won’t be properly cooled. It will eventually overheat completely. As a result, your CPU as well as other computer components may be harmed.

Perfect Thermal Paste Amount

Also, remember that properly applied thermal paste will last longer. But, you might wonder what the ideal amount is. Although there is no specific measurement, it is usually agreed that you should start with a pea-sized amount and add more if necessary.

When it comes to application, keep in mind that you should place the paste in the middle and then use the heat sink to push and disperse the paste throughout your CPU. However, if you’re using a liquid paste, make sure you only use a paper-thin layer on your CPU. When applying thermal paste, keep in mind that you must wait for it to dry. This is because the thermal paste isn’t designed to dry immediately after application. Because of the heated air in the CPU, it should dry after approximately a year of use. As a result, after applying thermal paste, you can lock in your CPU. There’s no need to wait for it to dry. Also, rest confident that if you don’t dry your paste, your computer will operate flawlessly.


Thermal paste can take anywhere from 5 minutes to 24 hours to dry. When you apply too much paste, it may not have enough time to dry before being subjected to pressure and heat as part of a computer’s CPU or GPU. Don’t be alarmed if your thermal compound has dried out on the surface of any electronic gadget. Alcohol and cotton swabs can be used to remove it.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does thermal paste dry quickly?

When you obtain thermal pads, you normally apply silicon thermal paste on them. These pads are simple to use, but they dry out more quickly than other thermal pastes and are less effective at transferring heat. The majority of consumers do not choose their thermal pastes depending on how long they last.

Can I use my PC after applying thermal paste?

You can start playing right away. I’ve been using it for years and always run the Intel Burn Test after completing a build. The temperature is equally great as it was when I used to have to wait days.

How long can thermal paste sit?

Many people use a three-year rule of thumb; however, there are lots of thermal compounds that will last longer than that if properly maintained. Arctic Silver 5 is a tried-and-true classic. Aside from the cure time, it’s also capacitive, so don’t get any on your circuits.


Bobby Najar is an avid reader and tech enthusiast. He loves writing about the latest technology and writes reviews on laptops, graphic cards, motherboards, PC rams, etc.

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