There is a caveat that comes with every single electronic item or thing in the world, and that is, it’s decumbent to fail at any given moment without a solid reason or pre-emptive signs.
This remains true in the example of graphics cards every bit well. Just like whatsoever other electrical component, they can fail at whatever time without whatsoever warnings, whether that exist 1 year or 10.
Generally, they are fabricated to last a long time; they are engineered to give the best possible performance they can, with the least amount of power consumption, exist every bit cool as possible and terminal years without breaking or falling apart. A GPU, if preserved properly, tin can last upwards to 10 years and yet piece of work afterwards that if information technology wants to.
There are a couple of reasons why they tin can die quicker than expected, and most of them are related to abusing it beyond its limits. It can get then bad in some cases that a unit can dice fifty-fifty before its warranty expires (which I guess is a good affair since you lot can so simply RMA it?).
If you employ it with care, you can expect at least effectually v years of life from a graphics chip, and there is a higher hazard that information technology will get obsolete and outdated before actually always dying. So, let’s look at how long do graphics cards really last.
What Causes Graphics Cards To Fail?
Autonomously from just declining out of nowhere for God knows what reasons, the heat seems to exist the kryptonite for graphics cards as information technology tin can seriously deteriorate their lives and reduces their lifespans very quickly. Bad thermals are bad plenty on their ain, but few other things tin as well contribute to imminent failure.
Overclocking The Card Likewise Much.
To squeeze even more performance out of your PC, you tin overclock information technology. Specially, when it comes to OC’ing, we are talking about the CPU, merely in this case, it’s the GPU. You can overclock it to increase its frequency and speed, and that, in turn, tin can give you amend overall performance, like increased FPS in games and higher benchmark results.
Merely simply like everything else, too much of a practiced matter is a bad affair. There is a reason why manufacturers give you the pick to OC or non. When they exercise it in a factory, it’s a very moderate increase because they don’t want to take the responsibility of your card frying suddenly. There is a limit to everything, so exist sure to remain in it.
Meet, overclocking produces extra heat since you are putting more of a strain on the carte du jour; it’s pushing more performance than its manufacturer intended for it, so higher amounts of oestrus are also beingness produced.
The rut tin can negatively affect your GPU in and so many ways that it’s alarming; your fans could literally melt if the temps get extremely high, solder points can melt, and VRAM chips on your PCB can also go fried.
Every GPU comes with fans installed on top of the flake to provide continuous cooling, and when that cooling or the general cooling of your entire example falls short, well, so you outset to hurt your graphics carte.
So, equally presently as you see any thermal throttling in your organization, know that your PC has had enough, and pushing information technology over its limits more than is definitely non a good thought.
Generally, it would be best if you had an intake and an frazzle to maintain positive airflow, meaning having more intake pressure than exhaust pressure.
Also, information technology’south skilful to aim for a positive airflow rather than negative, but in the end, it depends on the case and specific system.
Poor airflow can cause the fans to spin at full RPM yet withal show to be non-constructive and more dust can potentially build upward inside the arrangement, around the GPU that can clog its fans and cause information technology to fail.
Unless you want to give your PC a tour of hell, you demand to ensure that it has practiced airflow to keep the temps within the case equally depression as possible. If your PC does not have sufficient airflow or has bad airflow in which the air is not reaching where it should, information technology will fail to provide efficient natural and bogus cooling to the components inside, case in indicate, the GPU.
Used Too Much In Cryptocurrency Mining.
There was a time not likewise long ago where Bitcoin (cryptocurrency) became hugely popular, and a sudden craze took birth, only the bad thing about this craze was that to mine Bitcoins, y’all needed a ton of graphical power.
Thus, the extreme inflation of GPU prices where they were selling for literally double the MSRP and availability had become quite limited, all because of mining.
Then, if you are i of those people who abused your GPU to mine cryptocurrency, then you lot done messed upwardly things already.
However, many people are rocking second-manus used graphic units, and the used market is filled with mined units that people want to sell for cheap, so be on the lookout man for those and stay away from buying a mined card, always.
This is considering, in mining, the graphic chips become abused badly, and then much and then that you might have seen some mining rigs that are literally half-melted because of the insane amount of estrus that they produce.
Now yous don’t need me to tell you how terrible this is for the card’s longevity, so know that a mined GPU is definitely much much more than probable to fail than a non-mined one.
Fans Not Spinning Up.
If y’all were to run your video card at total 100% load 24/7 without whatever breaks, so the fans on information technology would dice in about two years. Now, unless you lot’re a mining rig, you lot will never run under total load all day, every day for 730 days straight. Only withal, regular gaming sessions of eight+ hours can prove to exist very intensive for your graphics unit so continue that in mind.
Generally, fans concluding up to 5 years under normal weather condition only can die in but around two years. As you could tell, fans are responsible for providing the cooling to your carte, and if they die on you lot, then temps will become exceedingly loftier to the bespeak where they can harm the unit itself.
Some GPU fans don’t start running until they reach a certain temperature (for case, 60 degrees) to minimize noise levels and also because extra cooling is not needed when information technology is idling or under very weak loads. So don’t panic if they aren’t spinning when you are just watching videos on YouTube.
That being said, your fans tin neglect on you lot for other reasons like besides much debris clogging them or just only shorting out because of their electrical nature. Fortunately, information technology’due south pretty like shooting fish in a barrel to replace them, and replacement fans are readily available at an affordable price.
Furthermore, it could exist possible that the fans aren’t spinning up because there is not enough power in the mix, pregnant that there is an consequence with your power supply. If you have another PSU lying effectually that you tin can try to ability your system with it to see if the GPU fans spin or not.
On height of that, there’southward a chance that your power supply is completely fine; rather, it has just depreciated over the years. As a general rule of pollex, nigh 5% of its wattage drops every year because of usage, so a 500W unit of measurement that yous bought 5 years ago may only be outputting 375W now, which isn’t enough to power all that hardware you’re packing inside (thus the idle fans).
This is pretty straightforward. Processing produces heat, and your card processes a lot of stuff; that’due south why information technology’s literally called a graphics “processing unit.”
The more intensive workloads y’all put it under, the more than heat it volition produce, and the college the oestrus, the more the fans volition ramp upwards to compensate for the rut, and somewhen, a signal will come when the fans just won’t cut information technology, and your system will kickoff to thermal throttle.
At present all this speculation is based on the fact that you push your PC to its absolute limits and go along on pushing; if you won’t practise that and utilize information technology adequately, then yous won’t run into whatsoever of these problems.
Heat is also produced from pretty much all the other components inside your computer. If at that place isn’t sufficient cooling inside, your temperatures volition become really loftier, your system will start to thermal throttle, and bad, bad things will follow if you do non terminate and provide better cooling.
Overclocking as well produces a lot of heat, so delight continue in mind that yous demand extra cooling to compensate for that; yous volition finish up with a fried chip.
This shouldn’t really exist a problem if your system already had good enough cooling and a positive airflow with multiple fans considering about GPUs these days have nice bulky heatsinks and cooling mechanisms built into them that tin can take care of its own temperatures, given that the case isn’t an absolute claustrophobic, suffocating nightmare.
Thermal Paste Issues.
All GPUs come with thermal paste pre-applied from the factory, but after extensive usage over long periods of time and heat production, or just because of the climatic atmospheric condition around information technology, the thermal paste tin get dried upwards. This tin can atomic number 82 to high temps since the heat generated from your carte du jour is non being dissipated properly.
So if y’all run into astronomically bad temperatures or if, for whatsoever reason, you took off the libation from your GPU, and so you need to re-apply the thermal paste. In that location are many neat and affordable options out there, like the Chill MX-4, and applying thermal paste is quite an easy task.
How Long Practise Graphic Cards Last?
A graphical processing unit of measurement, typically, is fabricated to final a very long fourth dimension. If preserved properly, and so it can final for over a decade and give yous little to no bug along the journey. If zero, you lot can expect a card to at least function like information technology’south supposed to nether its warranty menstruum.
Being an electrical product by nature, at that place is always a run a risk that it can dice on you for apparently no reason. But, quality control has gotten much better these days, and random failure cases are far and few in betwixt.
Over fourth dimension, the capacitors may go bad and popular; the solders on the circuit lath/PCB tin can eventually erode or melt out of place under a loftier-temperature operation if your GPU is nether full load continuously for long periods of fourth dimension.
In that location are tons of other ICs like voltage regulators and VRAM chips to become bad. If nil else happens, the GPU’south gilt contacts or semiconductors will diffuse, rendering information technology useless.
Now don’t panic; none of this happens in the kickoff few years of your purchase; these things will only come onto the surface after years of intense usage, give or accept around 7 years; if you practise not apply it like a madman and preserve it with care then, it can final a lot longer. But that’southward non the chief thing that can return your card dead; there is a bigger enemy that follows known as “obsolescence.”
Because we are essentially in a new aureate historic period of technology where we are trying to movement past our oil-intensive and fossil fuel-dependent wasteful era, the drive to introduce and make the next best affair is e’er-growing.
This tendency towards developing better, more than useful technology is clearly visible in the world of computing, where the biggest manufacturers like Intel, AMD, Nvidia, Samsung, etc. are working on adjacent-gen hardware and software that outshines older tech and makes the chips of yesteryear await like a bunch of toys.
This rapid gravitation towards adopting newer technology, still, tin hands lead to technological obsolescence where a product, case in point, GPU that price $g and was a elevation of the line model but a couple of years ago won’t be able to run modern games at respectable settings today.
Every year, developers piece of work hard to produce the best possible-looking game with extremely high-quality textures, shadows, and photorealistic furnishings.
To support this incline of the game’s visual fidelity, new graphic cards hit the market place every year, offering more functioning and better efficiency at a lower toll.
They deliver better FPS, run cooler, produce less noise, and by and large are merely all-effectually better products.
With these improved units, game developers at present get the liberty to create even more graphically demanding games that weren’t possible before; games with improved item, college resolutions, better lighting, college polygon count, etc.
And this bicycle keeps continuing with every new release where the games go on getting more and more than circuitous, and the GPUs that run them keep getting more advanced. The power required to run a game at its max settings increases along with the power a new GPU can produce, simply the older hardware, well, information technology gets left behind in the dust.
This isn’t practiced news for older hardware since it starts to depreciate really speedily in terms of its own capabilities. Once able to run the latest games at max settings in its fourth dimension, these older units cannot run newer titles at decently playable resolution and FPS.
This decline keeps getting worse and worse until a time comes when the menu is inevitably rendered useless because it cannot keep upwards with modernistic games and play them at even 720p at 30FPS. Often, driver back up also ends, and these products have to run on legacy drivers that don’t cooperate well with most modernistic games.
This time between the launch of a new graphics unit and when information technology becomes irrelevant is known as the “obsolescence lifetime.” This is why I said at the beginning of this article that GPU has a higher take a chance to become obsolete before it e’er actually fails and dies on yous.
On pinnacle of all this, these products’ obsolescence lifetimes are decreasing gradually because of the manufacturer’s goal to maximize its profits, which it can only do past producing improved cards that nosotros then take to upgrade to more frequently than earlier.
How To Increase Your Graphic Menu’s Lifespan.
Fortunately, the obsolescence period that we just talked about tin can be somewhat increased, and you tin become more life out of your bill of fare. By following some elementary guidelines, y’all can increment its longevity and lifespan by a considerable margin.
#ane- Run At A Lower Frame Rate.
Non all games are meant to be run at 300FPS; in fact, many people don’t even have a uniform monitor that can display high frame counts because their display panel is only 60Hz.
Simulation and strategy games, for example, do not need to be played at very loftier FPS, and you can go abroad with a pretty overnice feel with only 30FPS.
Detect your own sweet spot of graphical detail and frame rate and learn to appreciate the dazzler of a lower frame rate.
Playing at lower FPS will put less strain on the GPU and brand it produce less oestrus; this tin effectively increase its longevity and prevent it from running into whatsoever overheating bug. Games like Red Expressionless Redemption 2 are already very enervating, so turning downwardly the FPS cap may help you not only with thermals and better preservation of your carte du jour simply too can provide you a more stable gameplay experience.
#ii- Don’t Use Information technology In Cryptocurrency Mining.
Everything bad that you can do to your system to damage or hurt it is essentially what cryptocurrency mining does if you keep your card running 24/seven. What matters isn’t how mining uses it only rather how long it uses your graphics unit because the longer you leave it to run and mine, the more heat it volition produce, and it can and then start to even thermal throttle.
Every bit a proficient PC building practice, I would propose y’all against mining using your GPU and never ownership a used one that has been mined. Yes, mining doesn’t necessarily degrade it, merely the adventure involved with buying or using a mined graphics unit in your normal rig is too much to tackle since you lot never know how it’s been treated.
It can look pretty from the outside, merely from the inside, the PCB could’ve been repaired, or mayhap even the BIOS was tampered with to get fifty-fifty more ability out of the unit, so it’s just meliorate to steer clear of using your own card in mining or buying an already mined one.
#3- Do Not Overclock The Graphics Carte du jour.
Overclocking will clasp more performance out of it, but it will also generate more than oestrus and that rut tin easily harm information technology. Only even before all this happens, overclocking puts more burden on the unit of measurement since it’s technically working harder than the manufacturer intended to.
Overclocking is non a bad thing at all; in fact, all manufacturers actually get behind information technology, but it’south merely that an OC pushes information technology beyond its condom infinite, and that can cause wear and tear on it to solidify earlier than y’all might expect.
If yous want to increase its lifespan, so do non overclock it or play around with whatever of the avant-garde settings similar overvolting or undervolting.
#iv- Past Giving Proper Air Cooling.
Ah yes, heat, we meet again. By at present, y’all know the gist that graphics units produce rut when they are nether load, and that heat needs to exist dissipated, or your PC will starting time to thermal throttle, and after that, it would be enabled to crusade serious damage to or impairment your system if you practice non cool information technology down.
Your graphics unit also needs proper cooling, and sometimes the natural airflow is not enough for that. Adding more than fans that exhaust hot air abroad in front end of the bill of fare or provide fresh intake tin drastically improve temps and, along with that, longevity.
#5- PSU Is Proficient Enough.
Power supplies are arguably the PC’s breadwinner since they literally run the PC and supply adequate ability to all the components. If y’all accept a crappy Chinese PSU that you got off AliExpress for 20 bucks, then you don’t have a nice build in your room, merely instead a nice-looking bomb.
On elevation of that, there’s a chance that your power supply is completely fine; rather, information technology has just depreciated over the years.
As a full general rule of thumb, about 5% of its wattage drops every year considering of usage, so a 500W unit that you bought 5 years ago may only be outputting 375W now, which isn’t enough to power all that hardware yous’re packing inside (thus the idle fans).
If your power supply goes bad, it can have out other parts (like your GPU) or fifty-fifty your unabridged organization. Bad power supplies do non regulate or command the electric current and voltage that it provides to the system properly, and this tin can either put more than strain on the unit of measurement or provide less than plenty power. Opt for a high-quality (at least) 80+ rated power supply to avert running into these problems.
#6- Reduce Graphics Features And Settings.
The amend your graphics settings, the harder your video card will take to work to return all those frames. This also puts your GPU nether a lot of burdens that can stress it out easily. Yous don’t need to play at the highest resolution with maxed-out shadow reflections to get a practiced enjoyable experience.
Find a centre ground and try lowering the visual fidelity equally much as you can. I tin bet you lot wouldn’t even notice a difference if yous lower some of the settings, and when you do start to see a change, it would be so minimal that it will not negatively affect your immersion and gameplay.
Playing at lower resolutions and presets can ease upward your video bill of fare considerably, ultimately increasing its longevity.
#7- By Using An SSD.
Poor hard drives, they never knew what hit ’em. Flash storage is miles faster than actual mechanical drives that have spinning discs inside. In games, this helps in processing huge amounts of data rapidly, which effectively cuts down on loading times.
At that place are multiple types of SSDs, including SATA, M.2 NvME, and PCIe, all with different speeds and costs and also compatibility with motherboard hardware, so inquiry before you buy a new one.
If the game is taking less time load, then the graphics unit is besides automatically put under less pressure and can breathe more freely since the SSD is assuasive the game files and avails to be transported effectually so rapidly. And the less strain put on the GPU, the improve its chances of an increased lifespan.
Final Thoughts On It!
(Planned) Obsolescence can kill a menu before it ever truly dies. There is a very famous saying by Banksy that “You die twice. One time when you end breathing and a second fourth dimension, a bit later on when somebody says your proper name for the last time”.
We can utilize this credo to the GPUs also. They will first dice when they inevitably get obsolete, and so they dice for the 2d time when they actually stop working.
Deep existential thoughts bated, a video carte is engineered with much precision and care and will last you years upon years if you actually preserve it and not abuse it 24/vii under full load.
Some cards run fine even subsequently that, yet some die just considering of a short circuit; that’due south the cost of being an electrical component.
You can follow a couple of general rules to increase its lifespan and clasp more than life out of information technology, and likewise, you can avert things that tin can harm the card and reduce its life expectancy.
Whatsoever yous do, just know that it will die i 24-hour interval, doesn’t matter of obsolescence or a short excursion, just like every other matter in this world.
Oftentimes Asked Questions (FAQs)