PC Components

Can You Replace CPU Cooler? (Read This! Before Replacing)

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The CPU cooler is such a critical component of your PC system because it helps to dissipate the heat produced by the processor. As it is such an integral part of your system, therefore it is vital to replace the CPU cooler time by time.

Many peoples are confused about replacing the CPU cooler; they often wonder whether they can replace the CPU cooler or not?

I have done a ton of research about CPU cooler replacement, and after doing a complete analysis, I am writing this article to inform you everything regarding this.

So, Can You Replace the CPU Cooler?

Yes! You can replace the CPU cooler, and the process is straightforward to do so, but before removing the old CPU cooler, you should run your CPU a bit to heat up, which will soften your thermal paste, and after that, you can easily lift off the old cooler and put a new one. 

You can replace the old cooler with any of the air cooler or liquid coolers available in the market; however, if you want to use any stock coolers, then the Intel stock coolers are also available in the market.

After knowing the short answer, I know that you have several questions in your mind regarding CPU cooler replacement & in the below section, all of your questions are explained. So, keep reading this article till the end.

Is it Easy or Hard to Replace a CPU Cooler?

Replacing the CPU cooler is possible, but many people anticipate that it requires a lot of technical knowledge to replace a CPU cooler, but this concept is not genuine at all.

Replacing the CPU cooler is not hard, and you can complete this simple task within a minimal time. 

Can You Replace CPU Cooler
DeepCool AK620 High Performance CPU Cooler

But, sometimes, due to our mistakes, replacing the CPU cooler becomes a little complicated & therefore, it is essential to do the process carefully.

However, the most challenging part about replacing a CPU cooler isn’t the actual installation but making sure everything you disconnected in order to remove the motherboard gets adequately reconnected.

Therefore experts don’t recommend doing this for someone who doesn’t have good knowledge about PC components.

But the fact is you have to start from somewhere; therefore, I recommend that if you research the process of replacing the CPU cooler by watching videos and reading articles, then you can do this quite easily.

At last, I want to say that the process of replacing the CPU cooler is not annoying at all, and after some research, you can easily do this.

How Often to Replace CPU Cooler?

This question is asked by numerous people when they should replace their CPU cooler? Well, there is not any specific time for this.

Generally, users don’t replace their CPU cooler until it breaks or becomes too old and not working correctly. 

On average, a CPU cooler lasts between 1 to 3 years, depending on whether you are overclocking your CPU or not. If you don’t overclock your CPU, there is no need to replace the CPU cooler between 1 to 3 years.

Once you have used the CPU cooler for at least 3 years, you should check the cooler once every 6 months, and whenever it seems that the CPU temperature is reaching high while doing general tasks, then it is the perfect time to change the CPU cooler. 

Will Replacing CPU Cooler Worth it?

Yes! Replacing the CPU cooler is worth it for many reasons. Usually, if your CPU cooler has become pretty old and if it is not working correctly, then you should replace your CPU cooler.

Replacing the CPU cooler is very useful for the overclockers because with a new CPU cooler, they can overclock the CPU without any heating issues.

Moreover, on some occasions, you will also get an extra boosting performance by replacing the old CPU cooler because this the cooler often increases your CPU temp.

Requirements Needed to replace CPU Cooler

If you want to replace your old CPU cooler to install a new one, then you must require a couple of instruments, and here I have listed all of these instruments-

  • New CPU cooler
  • Screw Driver
  • Isopropyl Alcohol
  • Thermal Paste

These are the primary requirements needed to replace the CPU cooler, and let’s talk about these requirements in detail-

CPU Cooler

This is the first thing you require to replace an old CPU cooler; you can pick any type of cooler such as air coolers or water coolers.

If you are looking for an affordable cooler with stunning cooling performance, then you can go for Noctua NH-D15, a Premium CPU cooler with 2X NF- A15 PWM 140mm fans.

It is one of the most sold CPU coolers available on Amazon, and as of now (2022), based on user ratings, this product gains 4.8 stars out of 5 stars. Check out the cooler-

Screw Drivers

It is another crucial component you need to replace the CPU cooler; without this, you can’t unscrew your old cooler and put a new one.

If you often build PCs, you must have screwdrivers sets, but if you don’t, you can use any screwdriver to unscrew your old cooler. There is no need to buy a new screwdriver for this simple process.

Isopropyl Alcohol

Now, you might be wondering why this is required, but it is very much an important thing to remove your old thermal paste.

Usually, this alcohol is mixed with water for use as a rubbing- alcohol antiseptic. You can very easily remove your old thermal paste by putting a little bit of alcohol in the microfiber. After that, you can comfortably clean the thermal paste from the CPU.

If you don’t have Isopropyl Alcohol in your home, then you can buy it from- Here

Thermal Paste

Thermal paste is such an essential substance to install any CPU cooler because it allows for an efficient transfer of heat from the IHS of the processor to the base plate or water block of the CPU cooler that is designed to dissipate that heat.

Now, the majority of the time new CPU cooler usually comes with its thermal paste, but the paste is not that good; therefore, many users do not prefer to use this kind of paste.

So, if you want to apply a better and more affordable thermal paste, then you can go for Noctua NT-H1 3.5g, Pro-Grade Thermal Compound Paste (3.5g), it is one of the most sold thermal paste on Amazon.

How to Replace CPU cooler? (Steps)

To replace any CPU cooler, you must require the things mentioned above; so, at first, arrange the things mentioned above & then follow the steps-

Step 1

In the very first step, pick the screwdriver and open the side panel from the backside of your computer case by removing the screws.

After that, you will notice that there is a cable connected to the cooler, and unplug it from the motherboard.

If you are using the Intel cooler, unscrew the screw holding the cooler at the corners of the CPU. If you are using an AMD CPU, you can easily un-clip the CPU cooler without unscrewing it.

After doing all of this stuff, you can easily take off the CPU cooler.

Step 2

After taking off the CPU cooler next, you need to clean off the old thermal paste.

Put a little bit of Isopropyl alcohol on the microfiber and clean off the old thermal paste from the CPU.

Now, safely store the old CPU cooler.

Step 3

Now, pick up the new CPU cooler and check the cooler for compound. Before putting the old CPU cooler, just put a little bit of thermal paste on the center.

Attach an appropriate cooler bracket with your new cooler, and if you don’t have any bracket then you can check out from here- CPU Cooler Bracket.

Here, you need to attach your cooler to the bracket with the help of screws.

Finally, attach the cooler to the CPU and adequately attach the CPU cooler fan.

Then plug in all the power cables to the CPU cooler and put the PC and case back together.

I know that the process is a little bit complicated for you; therefore, I am attaching this video here-

Can You replace the CPU Cooler without Removing Motherboard?

Many people ask this question whether they can replace the CPU cooler without removing the motherboard or not?

Yes! It’s possible to replace an old CPU cooler with a new one without removing the motherboard; I have replaced it twice without touching the motherboard. 

If we take an example of the AMD lineup stock coolers, we will notice that most of these coolers use plastic clips that come preinstalled on a motherboard.

AMD stock coolers snap onto these clips with a small hook-like shape in the middle; therefore, you can easily pick these coolers without touching the motherboard.

When it comes to Intel, then, it depends on whether your pc case has the cutout or not; if your case has a cutout, then you can detach the backplate or install a new one.

Can you change the cooler on your CPU after it is stuck with thermal paste?

Yes! It is possible to change the CPU cooler on the CPU after it is stuck with the thermal paste. 

Can You Replace CPU Cooler
Corsair A500 High Performance Dual Fan CPU Cooler

Usually, when any CPU cooler is attached to the CPU, it becomes necessary to apply a small amount of thermal paste.

But later, if you want to remove the thermal paste, then you can do that, and to do so, you need to use Isopropyl Alcohol; just put this alcohol and remove the old thermal paste, and then you can attach any CPU cooler.

Can you Replace CPU Cooler Fans?

Yes! It is possible to replace the CPU fan, but make sure that the cooler is compatible with your PC’s motherboard. 

If you are looking to use an aftermarket cooler, make sure that you get it from the quality brands like Coolermaster or something else.

Can You Replace Intel CPU Cooler?

Many intel users ask whether they can replace the CPU cooler or not?

The simple answer is yes; you can replace the Intel CPU cooler, but before putting the new cooler on, make sure that your cooler is compatible with your motherboard.

Can You Replace AMD CPU Cooler?

Yes! Replacing the AMD CPU cooler is easier than the Intel CPU cooler because most AMD-based systems do not need to remove the mobo to replace the CPU cooler.

Final Thoughts

Based on all these things, it has to be said that it is a pretty simple process to replace a CPU cooler, and you don’t need a lot of technical knowledge to replace the CPU cooler.

I hope this article is helpful for you and if you want to know more about CPU coolers, different PC components, and other technology-related things, then keep following this blog regularly.

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