How to Clean Laptop Heatsink and Fan in 2021 Complete Guide

After the laptops has been used for some time, you will observe that the fan has lowered heat dissipation performance. But you did not know how to clean laptop heatsink and replace thermal grease to maintain the performance of the heat dissipation and extend its service life.

It is therefore vital to clean the fan and heatsink on the laptop on time. If you feel the palm rest is much higher or the fan often speeds up the rotation and odd noise, clean up the laptop fan to stop the laptop from being overheated.

This page describes special techniques of how to clean laptop heatsink, disassembling the laptops, and replacing the thermal grate, usually to clean the laptops fan, open the laptops (removing the bottom cover, keyboard, etc.).

You have to conduct some preparatory work before you start opening your laptop. You must know how to open your computer first. If you have no laptops repair experience, it may be damaged by naively opening your computer. Sadly, every laptop is opened differently.

Download the laptops maintenance manual from the official website is the easiest option. This document already includes the instructions to remove every laptop component. But only HP, Lenovo, and Dell supply maintenance manuals to my knowledge.

WARNING: Never remove hardware from your computer unless you know the working parts of the machine. Never use a vacuum cleaner to clear the dust; the device may generate a static discharge, even if the laptop is not attached to an energy source, which may damage sensitive electronics.

How to Clean Laptop Heatsink Step by Step Guide

Tools require:

  1. Screwdriver (examine the bottom cover types of screws to identify which type/size)
  2. Duster tissue
  3. The brush is soft.
  4. Thermal fat 
  5. Swab cotton
  6. Oil lubrication

Many people often leave me with a message asking about the sort of screwdriver. Usually, it is challenging to decide what kind of screwdriver to use to open your notebook. 

Thus I propose that you prepare a set of several types of screwdrivers. Fortunately, most Torx T5 screwdrivers can open up the ultrabooks.

Note: Before you start removing your laptop, make sure that your computer is off; wash your hands to eliminate static electricity to avoid permanent laptop damage.

1) Remove the bottom cover.

The bottom cover must be separated from the palm rest assembly using an old card or thin plastic instrument. The bottom cover includes multiple covered latches attached to the palm trees. The little plastic tool must be moved along the side to unfasten all latches.

2) Disconnect the motherboard battery cable

It would help if you unplugged the battery cable from the motherboard for security reasons before touching internal components.

3) Remove the heat sink and cooling fan.

Remove any cooling ventilator and heatsink screws and remove the fan cable from the motherboard, then you are allowed to remove the cooling ventilator and heatsink.

4) Clean the fan and sink heat

You will find that some screws secure the fan cover. After the screws are removed, you can remove the cover and use the brush to clean the fan’s dust. If the brush is insufficiently clean, you can wipe the blades with a damp towel.

To lessen the laptop fan noise, you can effortlessly pull the fan blades out.

To wet down the lubricant, use a cotton swab and apply it to the fan shaft. Apply a tiny bit also to the fan base, particularly the contact area.

Smooth the heatsink using a gentle brush

5) Remove CPU and GPU thermal grease

Use a dusting cloth to remove an old CPU, GPU, and heatsink thermal grease

6) Apply CPU and GPU thermal grease

Now use the new thermal grate on the CPU and GPU and install the ventilator and heat sink.

Then reconnect the cable of the battery and install the lid. The entire clean laptop fan operation is completed.

Caution While Cleaning a Laptop Fan and Heat Sink Fins

How to Clean Laptop Heatsink

Choosing the correct cleaning tools is a brilliant idea. Popular air can, air blower, airbrush compressor, and vacuum cleaner are included.

The vacuum cleaner is a better sucking device, whereas the others blow hard air into the laptop.

Ensure that the battery is removed and the adaptor cord disconnected when your laptop is maintained but leave the power cable plugged in with a vacuum cleaner.

Vacuum cleaners generate static power when sucking material. Nonetheless, many computer specialists have been using them without difficulties for years. But be careful not to suck the motherboard components when using a vacuum cleaner!

If you use a compressor to Staub your laptop, you should unhook the fan power connector into the motherboard. The speeds obtained can turn the little fans into small electricity generators.

When using air supplies, make sure the laptop is positioned at a high angle while the computer is upright. 

Freezing liquid jets are released by air that can be removed immediately after the computer is switched on. It is why you should avoid extended spraying rather than fast bursts. Better still, don’t rush immediately to switch the laptop on.

If you shop for air compressors, choose airbrush models. They are appropriate for computers because they are free of oil. Other air compressors spray oil jets that can cover components aboard.

Do not put the cleaner nozzles of the devices listed above near the board components for the danger of static release.

A critical remark is that everything must be ground while playing on the laptop using electronic circuits and components.

Continued usage and static discharge exposure could, in the long term, lead to component failure.


FAQs ― How to Clean Laptop Heatsink?

  1. How do I clean my heatsink without removing it?

    It is advisable to remove the heatsink, clean it (and the CPU), and reattach the heatsink. It should be possible without deleting the CPU. It would be even better to replace the inventory cooler with a cheap aftermarket cooler.

  2. How do you deep clean a heatsink?

    To clean the heatsink, reverse the can and drink the liquid propellant. It dissolves the coating and rinses it to the heatsink base. In a few seconds, the liquid will dissipate, leaving the heat sink clean.

  3. Can you clean a heatsink with water?

    Do not use water to clean the refrigerator. Don't submerge the cooler or the CPU. Before re-use and re-install the cooler, both the heatsink base and the CPU should be dry, free from thermal compound residues, and clear of grease.

  4. How do I remove dust from my CPU heatsink?

    Use a compressed air can remove the dust from the heat sink. If the heat sink is highly obstructed, compressed air may not be strong enough to clear the dust. In this scenario, wipe the stain gently off the heat sink using a lint-free towel.

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