How to increase the lifespan of your hardware

October 2016

How to increase the lifespan of your hardware


We all know that electronic components tend to heat up, but most people don't realize that over a certain temperature threshold, these components will degrade. Take the example of an HDD, in the summer, its temperature can almost double. A prolonged use at such extreme temperatures may permanently damage your HDD. To increase the lifespan of your devices, you will need to perform a proper maintenance.


The chipsets are among the components that generates the most heat:
Northbridge: Memory Controller
Southbridge: I/O Controller
Most motherboards are equipped with heatsinks. They help to dissipate the heat produced by the chipsets.


Warning !

The processor is one of the most expensive components of the PC and it is also very fragile!
  • You need to regularly clean the fan and cooler to prevent the accumulation of dust.
  • You use a soft nylon brush for this purpose
  • Replace the thermal paste on the processor every 2 years. Because over time, it tends to dry, harden and crack.

Avoid touching the copper connectors whether it is for Pin Grid Array (Socket 478) or Land Grid Array (LGA 775 Socket)
PGA478 Processor LGA775 Processor

Clean the old thermal paste with a tissue and a cotton bud. It should come fairly easily.

  • Put the CPU back in its socket
  • Pull down the small metallic lever and then apply the thermal paste

Place the Heatsink back. It should stand firm.

As a final step, connect the CPU Fan.

Graphics Card

The components generating the more heat are:
  • The GPU which is integrated to the Graphics Card.
  • The Memory acts like dedicated RAM memory for the Graphics Card.

  • Disconnect the heatsink.
  • Clean the old thermal paste.
  • Clean the fan.

If the fan is noisy:
  • Remove the metallic ring which maintains all the fans
  • Using a cotton but put some oil (example: Ballistol) in the shaft.

Don't spill oil on the electronics.

  • Place the fans back and apply a new layer of thermal paste.


Beyond 30°C, the hardware will gradually deteriorates. It is best to ventilate your hard drives using a 120x120mm fan.


RAM modules are increasingly equipped with a heatsink. It allows them to keep a more or less stable temperature.

You can dust off the RAM modules with a toothbrush.

NB: As for other components of your PC, avoid touching the copper connectors when removing the RAM modules.
The sebum present on your fingers can cause the connectors to overheat/oxidize.

Power Supply

Unplug the power cable and the POWER button of the PC (to clear any residual electrical charge).

The large cylindrical components still contain electricity!

Vacuum the inside without touching anything.

Cooling system

Tower cases promote the cooling of internal components

Remember to clean the fans (and grills). They will be less noisy and will provide optimal cooling.

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