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What's the best way to remove a CPU cooler without damaging anything?

I need to dismantle both my computers because I'm moving from the US to Mexico due to accepting a career opportunity and I need to bring my CAD workstation with me, along with another desktop computer of mine. The best way for me to not go over the 50 pound limit, and to fit all my PC parts in my carryon bag is for me to dismantle both PCs and put all the PC parts into my carryon bag after putting the parts into anti-static bags and wrapping them in bubble wrap. I plan to get new PC cases when I am in Mexico and re-assemble the PCs there. However, despite me having plenty of experience in building PCs, I don't have much experience un-building them lol. Of course the answer is obvious: I just to the same steps in reverse. However, the only step I don't know is how to remove the liquid coolers from the CPUs without damaging anything because of the thermal paste used on both PCs. 


Yes, I know, there are plenty of youtube tutorials on this subject but I came to this forum because I wanted to know if there are any linus tech tip videos showing how to do this. Also I thought it would be wise to at least ask if there are specific youtube videos that you guys reccomend that'll show me how to remove my CPU coolers. To be clear i'm not talking about how to clean the thermal paste off. I already know how to do that. 


If it helps, here is some info from my two builds: 


My CAD workstation:

Motherboard: ASUS PRIME Z490

CPU: i9-10850k

CPU Cooler: NZXT Kraken Z73 360mm liquid cooling system with LCD display


My other PC:

Motherboard: MSI Z370-A PRO LGA 1151

CPU: Intel Core i7-8700k

CPU Cooler: https://www.newegg.com/p/N82E16835352029?Item=N82E16835352029



Thanks for any advice ya'all can give me on how to remove these liquid coolers without damaging anything. 🙂






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a question I forgot to ask: Is it true that all I need to do is let my pc idle for 20 minutes, before switching it off and then trying to wiggle the coolers lose? What do ya'all think about that method? (This is something I learned on one of the youtube tutorials I found when looking this subject up on youtube)

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Generally heating up the CPUs is for AMD CPUs that have a tendency to stick to the coolers and can easily be pulled out of the socket with the cooler. This can result in bent pins if you aren't careful. 


None of this applies to your Intel CPUs as they have bracket that locks them into the socket. You can turn them on to warm up the paste if you want, it will soften the paste (which can make things easier). However generally after disconnecting the heat sink, give it a gentle twist (not all can twist,  but most can) and you should be able to pull it up and out.

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