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Tuniq TR-1 Thermal Material Remover

Manufacturer: Tuniq
Supplied by:
Street Price: $6.99 ($1.99 after $5 mail in rebate here)

by Dean Barker  (02/24/2009)


We all remember times when a thermal interface pad refused to be neatly removed or when some baked on thermal paste wouldn't come completely up.  Aside from wanting your rig neat and trim there is always the issue of damaging the base of a cooler.  Copper and aluminum bases on modern coolers are machined to be as flush a surface as possible.  Doing the 'razor blade' thing to get stubborn pieces of TIM off is far from recommended.  Enter Tuniq's TR-1 Thermal Material Remover. 

Tuniq's TR-1 is sold in a 30ml squeeze bottle which should be enough for the average user for a long long time.  It is advertised as nonconductive and nontoxic.  Even with this claim which I'm sure is true, I wouldn't recommend testing these two qualities on powered up equipment or by drinking it. 

Application and use is pretty straight forward.  Saturate the disagreeable thermal pad or material you want to be removed and wait 30 - 50 seconds.  The TR-1 partially dissolves the thermal interface material in question so it can be wiped away.  In testing this here at the Penthouse Labs, "wiped away" translated into something more than cleaning the bathroom mirror but not much.

Below is an LGA775 OEM heatsink that I had cooked the TIM pad on to.  This cooler has been on the shelf for a while after I had tried to get the pad off unsuccessfully with some alcohol and a rag.  The rough chuck like removal of the pad is the result of a screwdriver, too much Sam Adams and too little patience on a cooler I knew I would never use again some months ago.  Check out how well the Tuniq TR-1 did on the half I saturated after pulling this cooler back off the shelf. 


The outline of the pad is still present but that is only because of my using alcohol and the copper base oxidizing a bit in the months it was on the shelf.  Start to finish on the clean half was less than 60 seconds.

Tuniq's TR-1 gets the area clean and ready for maximum thermal efficiency.  It works and works well.  Pricing out at $6.99 at NewEgg, seems a tad high; however, add in the current $5 rebate and you have a "gotta have" product.  I'm a firm believer in removing heatsinks every six months or so and reapplying thermal grease.  Prepping the area with Tuniq's TR-1 Thermal Material Remover as part of this process is the only way to do this quickly and efficiently.  Tuniq's TR-1 is easily a product we can recommend and one we will not go without here in our shop.  Here's a quick link to NewEgg where this product is available now.




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