Last week I discussed briefly about the importance of keeping your laptop ventilation clean from dust. That is not important only for the sake of your health but mostly for the sake of your laptop's performance. Even an Apple MacBook needs to have dust removed once a year in order to perform in an optimal manner.
That got me thinking about another crucial element related to the performance and heat management of a laptop. Thermal paste. So what is thermal paste and what is it good for?
As you surely know the CPU or central processing unit is the "brain" of every computer, be it a desktop running windows, a laptop running windows or linux or an Apple MacBook. They all have a processor inside them that does all the heavy duty calculations. Just a quick note here, there are all sorts of processing units aside from the CPU in any computer, or phone for that matter, but for the sake of simplicity we will only focus on the CPU here.
So, the CPU does all the calculations that allow your operating system to boot, your word document to write wonderful words and your video player to show you HD images at 60FPS. It does that using a lot of 0's and 1's and it uses electricity to generate those sequences of 0,1,1,0,1,0,0,1,1 (and on and on to iternity). Electricity is source of heat. Processors today have become very efficient compared to just a couple of years ago but the laws of physics cannot be bend unfortunately, where there is electricity there will be some loss of energy as heat. In fact, if we stilck to definitions from the world of physics, all energy coming into the processor will turn into heat. It's just that some of the electrical energy coming in will be used to change the processor state before turning to heat. Some in-depth and very interesting explantation of this can be found here.
But let's leave physics aside for a minute. What matters in the context of this post is the answer to a simple question, what is done to dissipate this heat? The first solution which I discussed in last week's blog post is ventilation. The heat is being pushed out of the laptop chassis using a fan that pushes the heat towards the back or the side/s of the laptop. But that is fat from being an adequate solution, it's simply not enough to remove all the heat generated by the CPU. This is where the thermal paste comes in.
Thermal paste (or CPU grease or heat paste are also common names for it) is a special material that has 0 electrical conductivity but very high properties of heat conductivity. The thermal paste sits directly on the CPU and right under a piece of metal, called the heatsink. What this does is bring the heat directly to the heatsink, that hit sink goes towards the ventalation location and the fan pushes the hot air out.
That is a smart, simple and elegant solution to dissipate heat from the inside of a laptop chassis but it has one key weakness. The paste on the CPU tends to crack and dry up over time. It will still function but the reduces efficiency of the paste would mean that the CPU within laptop/MacBook is going to operate at higher temperatures. Higher telperatures mean significantly slower performance.
It is recommended to replace the thermal paste ideally once a year and definitely once every two years. This would guarantee that the laptop (or desktop for that matter) will perform at it's best and have a much longer lifespan.
If you want to have your thermal paste replaced by a professional who did it thousands of times, with his eyes shut in the dark, look no forther than our contact page, we are here to answer any question you may have.
Pollution in cities is a hotly debated topic is many of the large cities of the world. Be it Paris who opted to ban cars from a big part of the city or Brussels who decided to it à la bélge- doing nothing and debating in all 7 parliaments in the country what should be done, it is clear that dust is everywhere.
Something very few people think about is the effect of all that dust on their laptop or mac performance. All microprocessors produce heat which needs to be pushed out of the chassis in order to keep working. Any processor has a peak temperature at which it turns off. High temperatures also cause slowness even if the maximal temperature isn't reached.
Another annoying effect of dust accumulations in the fan and the ventilation is that hisse noise coming out of the fans and on top of that you run the risk of your fan not simply not working anymore as it has been spinning nonstop due to the dust.
Now ask yourself, when is the last time you had the fans cleaned from dust? probably never right..
Although your laptop can continue to function even if it's fans are stuffed with dust from last year, you are definitely losing a lot of performance, draining your battery faster and suffering from fan noise because of all that dust.
It is recommended to thoroughly clean up your laptop fans once a year. By thoroughly we mean open up the chassis and removing all the dust that got built up in there.
If you feel your laptop is starting to run slow, your laptop is running hot and the fans spin without you doing any processor intense tasks might mean you just need to clean up your fans.
If you do not want to open up your precious laptop we would be happy to treat it to an internal and external cleaning for the very competitive price of 30 Euros.
Contact us if you have any questions
Water, the source of all life on earth and the base on which we all rely on a daily basis. Indeed, without water we simply would not be in existence. That said water sometimes has some pretty undesired effects. Sometimes our treasured water falls down due to the power that is gravity. sometimes under the treasured water is a laptop, an iMac, an iPhone and so on.
As you all know, water and electrical DC circuits are completely and utterly incompatible. That is not about to change before we find a parallel universe in which water is not conductive. So until than here are a few solutions that might be of use in case water or another liquid got a little too close to your precious laptop, phone or tablet:
First thing first, identify the enemy:
Not all liquids are created equal. Sure, they all have H2O in them but they can also contain sugar, alcohol (a form of sugar), fruit (again, sugar) and so on. Different materials will interact differently with an electronics board such as a motherboard.
The rule of thumb is, the purer the water the more you are likely to save your laptop phone or tablet that had water spilled on them. That happens because water does potentially cause short-circuits but it does not create corrosion imitatively. that will take several days in most cases.
If sugar is joined into the mix corrosion will be created much much faster. a glass of zine or fruit juice spilled on a laptop, be it a mac an HP or a Lenovo, can create an impressive layer of corrosion on the motherboard.
This is probably the time to tell you all that it is the corrosion that will destroy your laptop, not the liquid itself.
So what should I do if I spilled water on my laptop or mac?
I will start by saying what not to do. putting your phone/laptop/mac/tablet in a bag of rice might be a very cool way to pass your time but it will do nothing to prevent corrosion. What it will do is ABSORB MOST of the water but residue will remain and that residue will create corrosion within a few weeks and all of a sudden your precious gadget will be damaged beyond repair. In case of spillage involving wine and other goodies the rice will allow you a day or two of use at best before you can say goodbye to your hardware.
So no rice please.
The one thing, the only thing to do, is to immediately power of your device and if possible remove the battery as the battery might still release small amounts of charge even if the device is off. If a short circuit happens on aboard there is almost no way to recover from that.
So again, turn the device off immediately. like right now, you can come back to read after that's done.
You turned off your device? Good
Now you need us. To treat a water damaged motherboard you need to use specialized chemical compounds that make sure that 0 residue is left and no corrosion will develop later on. As this requires a complete dismantlement of your electronic device it's best if done by a certified technician.
I happen to be one, so if you spilled water, spilled wine or a smoothy on your laptop, your mac etc just contact brussels-computers and we take care of the problem for you.
We offer door to door pick up and return, a kind and professional level of service at fair prices.
Contact us now