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Best cloth for thermal paste removal?

I don't really trust paper towel and I don't usually have them so are there fiberless cloth or any better alternatives that would work?
Reply to GL9106
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More about cloth thermal paste removal
  1. I wouldn't overthink this. I've used old shirts, toilet paper, newspaper, etc. and none of it has made any noticeable difference. I use what I have on-hand.
    Reply to Ecky
  2. I'm not really sure about that since leaving fibers behind can cause air pockets which would make the CPU hotter.
    Reply to GL9106
  3. alcohol and a hand full of cotton swabs never had a problem in over 25 years, and over 35 computers.
    Reply to goldstone77
  4. So I literally use a cotton swab to wipe the remaining alcohol off?
    Reply to GL9106
  5. Coffee filters and at least 75% isopropyl alcohol, 91% is slightly better. Do not soak anything, use it damp, not dripping, you do not want that dripping down into the pin area of the socket. Keep cleaning until the filter comes back about clean. Do not touch the cpu lid with your fingers after cleaning and make sure the lid is completely dry before application of new paste.
    Reply to Karadjgne
  6. GL9106 said:
    So I literally use a cotton swab to wipe the remaining alcohol off?


    That's correct. You can use regular 80% rubbing alcohol or the 91% it drys faster.
    Reply to goldstone77
  7. So I will use a damp coffee filter with atleast 80% isopropyl acohol and wait for it to dry instead of remove the liquid with a cotton swab. I'm not sure whether it's best to use a cotton swab or wait for it to dry but waiting for evaporation seems safer.
    Reply to GL9106
  8. GL9106 said:
    So I will use a damp coffee filter with atleast 80% isopropyl acohol and wait for it to dry instead of remove the liquid with a cotton swab. I'm not sure whether it's best to use a cotton swab or wait for it to dry but waiting for evaporation seems safer.


    Coffee filter and isopropyl dries in about 15 seconds.
    Reply to USAFRet
  9. Yea you don't want to use any cloth due to stored static in the cloth fibers
    Reply to Kunra Zether
  10. Kunra Zether said:
    Yea you don't want to use any cloth due to stored static in the cloth fibers


    It doesn't work like that.
    Reply to USAFRet
  11. I suggest reading about skin and polyesters since most cheap fabrics are polyesters including microfiber which one would think would be great for cleaning a CPU without scratch but it has a higher risk of storing a static charge
    Reply to Kunra Zether
  12. Kunra Zether said:


    From your link:
    ----------------------
    Neutral
    There are very few materials that do not tend to readily attract or give up electrons when brought in contact or rubbed with other materials.
    Materials that are relatively neutral

    Cotton
    Best for non-static clothes
    -----------------------------------
    Of which most t-shirts are made of.
    Reply to USAFRet
  13. Seems wood materials ie paper napkins and most coffee filters are probably good options
    Reply to Kunra Zether
  14. Actually alot of t- shirts are polyesters except for maybe Haynes white t shirts and such but why use it when a paper towel is so much more accessible and disposable.
    Reply to Kunra Zether
  15. And yes, the coffee filters and paper towels were recommended earlier.

    But "you don't want to use any cloth" is a bit extreme.

    Let's amend that to "a cotton t-shirt can work as well".
    Reply to USAFRet
  16. Best answer
    Reason for coffee filters over other products has nothing to do with static and everything to do with Lint. Paper towels, TP, etc once moisture hits them leave large amounts of particle lint. Most of the lint requires a magnifying glass to see. Once the paste is applied, and you stick the cooler on the lid, that lint becomes an insulator as it has very bad thermal transfer properties. When you consider the millions of transistors in a cpu and the nano-size of them, anything that prevents heat transfer is going to create a Hotspot and you run a high chance of burning out portions of the cores, reducing life expectancy, OC ability, stability etc. Coffee filters are as lint free a product as is commercially available to the public.
    Reply to Karadjgne
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