How To Clean A Graphics Card: A Step-By-Step Guide

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How To Clean A Graphics Card: A Step-By-Step Guide

If you are looking for simple instructions on how to clean your graphics card, you have come to the right place.

Like your RAM stick, PC Fan and monitor, your graphic cards can also get dirty over time and needs some cleaning to keep them running at their best. If you periodically clean your graphics card, you will reduce the chances of your PC overheating or encountering display issues.

In this guide, we will be going through the process of cleaning a graphics card step by step. Let's get started!

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How To Clean A Graphics Card

Cleaning your GPU may sound like a tedious task. But, with a little know-how, you can clean your graphics card in just a few minutes - without damaging it. It is recommended to clean your GPU every 6 months to keep it in top condition.

Before you start cleaning your graphics card, make sure you have all the following items available: microfiber cloths, a can of compressed air, isopropyl solution, and a soft brush. These tools will make your job easier.

You will get all these tools in a professional camera cleaning kit which you can buy on Amazon for under $10.

Remove the graphics card from your PC

The first thing you need to do is, of course, unmount the graphics card from your motherboard. You can remove the graphics card by unfastening the screws that hold the GPU to the back of the case.

Don't forget to disconnect all internal cables connected to the graphics hardware. Finally, pull on the expansion slot lever gently to unlock the card from the slot and slide the card out of the graphics slot.

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Disassemble the card

Once the graphics card is removed, place it on a flat surface, in a dust-free environment. To perform a deep clean, you need to dismantle your GPU. To do that, simply flip your GPU fan-side down and remove every screw you can find.

If you have followed the instructions correctly, you will have successfully separated the fan unit from the board. Do not forget to disconnect the cables connecting your cooler (fan) and the board.

Use the compressed air to loosen the dust

Now that you have disassembled the GPU you can start cleaning it. Start by spraying bursts of air all over your graphics card using compressed air. Then use a soft brush to gently wipe off any dust or dirt from the surface of the graphics card.

Use the compressed air again to blow the dust away from the USB ports. Spray quick bursts of air from different angles until you are satisfied with the result. If you haven't disassembled the fan unit, you can blow off the dust with compressed air.

Use isopropyl alcohol solution to remove persistent dust

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To wipe off stubborn dirt and dust, use a microfiber cloth soaked in an isopropyl alcohol solution. Lightly dampen the microfiber cloth with the isopropyl solution and start wiping the surface of your graphics card.

You can also use a Q-tip dipped in the solution for this purpose. Repeat this process until you are satisfied with the results. Finally, dry the graphics card by wiping it with a clean, dry microfiber cloth.

Reassemble the graphics card

After you have cleaned your graphics card, reassemble it by reversing the steps you took to disassemble it. You can do this by simply turning your GPU fan-side down and fastening all the screws that you have removed and reconnecting the cables.

You should also need to apply thermal paste to the heatsink, as well as reinstall the thermal pads if they have been removed. And then you should be good to go.

That's it! Your shiny graphics card is now ready to go.