CPU thermal paste

My recently purchased used Lenovo Thinkpad X270 seemed to run quite hot right out of the box, running the fans at full speed just copying a file across the network. Running a sensor reading program showed the cpu’s hitting 98C regularly at less than 50% load.

My first thought was to inspect the exhaust ports and heat sink to make sure they were not plugged with debris. The inside of the laptop was very clean, no visible signs of dust anywhere. So I opted to remove and replace the thermal compound from the cpu.

This fixed the issue, the laptop now idles at 30C and the highest temp I’ve recorded after a week of use is 80C. I used Arctic MX4 but I don’t think the brand matters as long as you use a quality thermal paste.

If your laptop is running hot and you feel comfortable removing the heat sink I highly recommend replacing the CPU thermal compound.