The processor is both the most important and most fragile piece of hardware. Falling to the floor or failing to install can easily cause the legs to bend. The bent legs will prevent you from seating the processor properly in the socket, which can lead to hardware errors in your computer. Fortunately, there are a few easy ways you can try before spending your money on a new processor.
- Using a plastic card: Good all-round approach.
- Using a mechanical pencil: Best suited when only a few legs are bent.
- Using a sewing needle: Suitable for severe curls.
Method 1 of 3: Using a plastic card to straighten the legs
Step 1. Find a suitable workplace
You should place the processor with its feet facing up on a hard, level surface. Make sure to neutralize any static electricity by touching a grounded metal object.
Step 2. Find the right card for the job
Generally, a regular bank card or gift card should work. Find the row on the processor that does not have bent legs. If your card is of a suitable thickness, then it should slide between the legs along the row with little resistance, but not deform the legs themselves.
- The card is too thin if there is no contact with the legs or there is no friction.
- If the card is too thick, then you cannot move it along the row without bending the legs. Insert the card in a corner and never pull it in too fast.
Step 3. Walk the map along the row of curved legs in all 4 directions
For example, if you bent one leg, then you must pass the map around it in the form of an imaginary "#" symbol. This will align the bent leg in all directions.
Step 4. Try to install the processor
If it does not fit snugly into the socket, then most likely some of the legs are still bent. Some of the bent legs in the middle of the processor can be difficult to spot.
Important: do not try to forcefully insert or secure the processor in the socket
Method 2 of 3: Aligning the legs with a mechanical pencil
Step 1. Find a pencil of the correct size
This method is best for straightening multiple free-standing legs. You will need a mechanical pencil with a 0.5 or 0.7 mm hole. It is these pencils that will allow you to comfortably grip the processor leg.
Step 2. Completely remove the lead from the pencil
There should be nothing in the hole of the pencil.
Step 3. Place the leg into the pencil slate hole
Carefully bend the leg back to its original position. You can use the position of the pencil as a guide to catch the moment when the right angle is reached.
Method 3 of 3: Using the sewing needle as a lever
Step 1. Take a needle of the correct diameter
The needle is too thick if you cannot fit it comfortably between the two legs. The advantage of using a needle is that it can pry off strongly curved legs from below, which cannot be done in other ways.
A toothpick or small tweezers may work as well
Step 2. Insert the needle under the bent leg
Be careful not to damage the surface of the processor.
Step 3. Raise the needle at one end
This will return the bent leg to an upright position.
Step 4. Assess the situation and determine how to proceed
If the leg seems straight enough, then you can try installing the processor. If the leg still needs to be straightened, try the plastic card and pencil methods. You can also continue to manipulate the sewing needle to make the foot as straight as possible.
Always be careful when arching your legs as there is a chance of breaking them
- For some inexplicable reason, gift cards are best suited for this.
- If the processor is not installed, determine those sides that fit into the socket normally. If all corners enter, but one does not, then in this case it is there that you should look for a bent leg (or legs).
- Look closely at the processor under a powerful light source to try to find any bent legs. If the processor still doesn’t want to fit into the socket, look for the bent leg closer to the center, as this is where it’s quite easy to miss.
- Improper installation of the processor (unless you purchased it with bent legs) will void the warranty on it.
- Remember to apply thermal grease to the surface of the processor every time you remove the heat sink.
- In most modern processors, the legs are made of very thin gold-plated wire, so they are quite soft, pliable, and easily breakable. There is no way to repair a broken processor leg unless you have specialized hardware and skills.
- Do not bend your legs too much. They don't have to look perfect, but they should only be straightened to the point where the processor can fit into the socket without problems. It is also worth considering that bending the leg forward and backward can lead to its fracture.