Macbook pro 2012 - Thermal paste replacement time?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by sneak3, May 19, 2014.

  1. sneak3 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2011

    My macbook pro mid-2012 is roughly 1 year old. I was wondering what is the recommended time frame to replace the thermal paste. With my old 2010 macbook I replaced the grease several years later, but I dont wanna make the same mistake again.

    So how long do you guys think the crappy apple thermal paste can handle before the performance starts dropping and heat starts increasing?

    On another note, I think it's common knowledge that factory thermal paste must be replaced in all notebooks/laptops, no matter the brand. However, I also heard that apple changed the manufacturing process after 2011, and all 2012 models had their thermal pastes decently applier. I'm not sure if thats just a rumor though.

    What do you think?
  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I don't think there is a "recommended" time, If you want to do it, then go for it, but there's no official recommendation, nor is there even any consensus that its needed.

    Are you starting to incur higher then normal temperatures, are you seeing anything out of the ordinary?

    I have a 2010 MBP that's still rocking as is a 2009 Mac Mini and I have no desire to replace the thermal paste of either one. Why fix what's not broken
  3. sneak3 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2011
    I'm not quite sure. I've seen few reports of idle temperature way lower than mine. After raising the back and using it on a 22C ambient, I thought it was the thermal paste.
  4. paolo- macrumors 6502a

    Aug 24, 2008
    I don't think thermal pastes deteriorate much with time. At least, not in a two year span. I'd just open the computer and clean dust that might be floating around.

    If you think replacing the thermal paste will help the computer run cooler than go for it...
  5. 556fmjoe macrumors 65816


    Apr 19, 2014
    I have read conflicting reports about whether thermal paste goes bad, but it certainly should still be fine in a computer that new.

    However, they may have applied it incorrectly (they tend to use too much), and you may see a difference if you reapply it yourself with the correct amount.
  6. Quackers macrumors 6502a

    Sep 18, 2013
    Manchester, UK
    You could try running the script in the thread below and compare your output graphs with others already posted.
    I did (though I suspected something was wrong with mine) and Apple have decided that the logic board and heatsink should be replaced in my mid 2012 rMBP.
  7. Andy2k, Jul 18, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2015

    Andy2k macrumors member

    Jul 18, 2015
    Sorry if this is a dead thread.
    I would recommend replacing it. Apple uses too much TIM and too cheap. It dries out in less than a year. I have changed TIM on 5 different Macs. My late 2014 Mac Mini TIM was already dried out and running hot. The CPU proximity temp dropped by 20 C and the aluminum top of the Mini is no longer hot as a frying pan. The pictures are from a mid 2013 rMBP. Look how dried out the paste is already. It's running about 17 C cooler. I use Arctic MX-4 and love it. 2 hour cure time, temps on par with arctic silver 5 minus the 198 extra hours of "burn-in"


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