When should I open my computer and dust it out?
A few months ago, I bought my 5K iMac with powerful specifications, including the 8 core 9th-gen i9 (I now realize that the CPU is socketed and I should have saved money by doing my own operation) and Vega 48 with 8GB VRAM. I use this computer quite often for all of my school work, some video content, and gaming on Windows Bootcamp.
I am aware that dust buildup in the machine can cause thermal throttling over time and can damage the device. Since I have spent so much on this computer, I look forward to buying adhesive strips, opening the computer, and then dusting it off and closing it up (possibly doing some upgrades on the inside using the vacant PCIe slots or putting in a new CPU in 5 years). With all these things considered (how often I use it and all of the technology in there that tends to get hot), when is the best time I should schedule to open the computer and do the dust off? Obviously it’s inconvenient to get inside and requires single-use parts like adhesive, and so I can’t just “check on the dustiness” every so often.
I am wondering if anybody has an estimate of when my computer will start to collect enough dust that it needs to be cleaned out before it damages the computer, perhaps in "x months after you bought the machine” or after the machine starts behaving in a certain way. Is there a routine test I should be running to determine this instead, especially if dust collection is extremely variable from system to system and no estimate is reliable? Thank you!
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