Apart from the natural causes of a graphic card’s failure, which could be falling out of nowhere, the kryptonite is a major cause of graphic cards to fail. The kryptonite can deteriorate the lives of graphics cards and reduce their lifespan very quickly. Of course, the bad temperature is already a cause of failure, but do you know other factors that may lead to the failure of a graphics card? Let us get to know them so that we can determine the answer to the question, “how long do GPUs last?”
How Long Can A GPU Last?
A GPU is the short form of the graphical processing unit, and generally, it is built to last for a long period. If you preserve your GPU properly, it can even take you for over a decade, with little or no problems in the whole journey of using it. It can also function to the latter within the warranty period it is subscribed to.
Since a GPU is an electrical card by nature, it can die or malfunction without reason. However, nowadays, quality control has gotten better, thus fewer product failure cases.
If you have used your graphics card over a long period, the capacitors may go bad and pop, while the solder on the circuit board may erode or melt and come out of place due to the high-temperature operation. This is possible if the GPU has a poor power supply unit, leading to a full load continuously for a long time.
Other parts in the graphics cards could go bad, such as the ICs like the voltage regulators and VRAM chips. If there is no change, the GPU’s gold contacts or semiconductors are bound to diffuse and make the graphics card useless.
However, this should not worry you if you have recently purchased your graphics card. The problems mentioned earlier will only apply t you when you have used the graphics card after many years of intense usage. This could be even 7 years after your purchase, and if you use the graphics card in a preservative way, then who knows, it may last even longer than that.
The main thing that can make your graphics card dead is obsolescence. Everything is moving fast with the new ear of technology, and leaving behind is but an option. So developers are trying to be innovative to develop the best graphics cards that last. The trends in creating better and more useful technology are visible through the rising computing companies like Intel, AMD, Nvidia, Samsung, to mention a few. These computing manufacturers are developing powerful GPUs that make older chips look irrelevant in playing games.
The rapid growth in new technology can lead to technological obsolescence, and your old GPU will be rendered useless. Also, the new graphics cars’ price in the market is relatively lower than the older ones, thus making people progress with the changing times. The older GPU also is not able to run new aaa games as much as you bought it at a high cost.
The current technology has developers producing the best video cards to play the latest games with extremely high-quality textures and photorealistic effects. Since each manufacturing company needs to support visual fidelity, most games with new graphics cards have hit the market that offers efficient performance at a very low cost.
They have improved units, a proper cooling system with multiple fans, produce less noise, and perform better than the latter.
With the new units, game developers can now create even more graphically demanding games that did not exist before. In addition, the new games have improved detail, higher resolutions, better lighting and much more performance.
The cycle of having new releases in the market continues where games become more complex and the GPUs that run them get even more complex. The power required to run a game at max settings increases with the power a new graphics card can produce. And if you have older hardware, you have to upgrade to the one with high settings.
This reduces the life expectancy rate for older hardware as it can be rendered useless if it cannot keep up with today’s games. In most cases, the driver support eventually erodes, and these products have to run on legacy drivers that do not cooperate with most modern games. The period between the launch of new graphics and when your graphics card becomes useless is called obsolescence lifetime. If you have an out of date GPU, it has a chance of becoming completely obsolete before it fails and dies on you.
How You Can Increase Your Graphics Card’s Lifespan
If you have an old graphics card, worry less because you can increase your graphics card life span by a small margin, this is how.
Run At A Lower Frame Rate
Not all pc gaming is meant to be run at 300FPS; most people do not have compatible monitors with high graphics settings. For example, you do not need to play simulation and strategy games since they are graphically demanding. These games need to be played at high settings, yet you can get some pc gaming as low as 30FPS.
Find an interesting game rate with lower settings and play games with a less demanding frame rate.
Playing at a lower frame rate puts less strain on the GPU and produces cool air. This effect can increase longevity and prevent it from overheating issues. If you turn down an FPS, it may not only help in proper airflow but provide you with a stable gameplay experience.
Avoid Using Your Graphics Card In Cryptocurrency Mining
If you run your graphics card continuously in cryptocurrency mining, you might end up damaging it. The important aspect is not using it in cryptocurrency mining but how long it uses your graphic cards unit. The issue is in the duration because the longer you use your graphic cards to run and mine, the more heat it will produce, which will ruin your graphics card.
Even if you have a powerful GPU, it would be best to avoid mining using your GPU or replace GPUs with used ones. Mining might not degrade your GPU but look at the risk of buying a mined graphics unit since you never know how it was previously handled.
Give Your PC Proper Airflow
Graphics cards produce a lot of hot air when they are under load. The heat needs to be distributed using thermal pads, or your pc will start to thermal throttle, and it would harm your system if you fail to cool it down.
Since all GPU comes with thermal paste, pre-applied from the company that manufacturers them, the thermal paste can get damaged if used for a long period, and there is a lot of heat production.
The heat production can lead to the thermal paste getting dried up since the high temps from your computer can cause wear and tear.
If you want a good GPU, you should give it proper cooling and sometimes, the natural airflow may not be enough for it. So you can add GPU fans that push the hot air away and allow the graphics cards to take in cool air to improve the temperature and increase its longevity.
A Good Power Supply
A graphics card lasts longer when connected to the right power supply. More power supply means your GPU can run fine and who knows it? It lasts forever. The power supply runs the PC and supplies enough power to all components. As a general rule of the thumb, 5% of wattage drops every year because of usage. So if you have a 5-year-old GPU, it may have an output of 375W, which is not enough power to supply all the hardware fans you could be packing.
If your power supply reduces, it can take down some pc parts of your GPU or even the entire system if you want a better power supply that has a higher quality to avoid running into such issues.
Reduce The Graphics Card Features And Settings
If you want to play on high fps, it will be harder for your graphic card to work and render all those frames. This will put your GPU under a lot of pressure that can stress it out easily. Instead, you can play games in lower resolutions and get better performance on your GPU. Playing games in low settings will also give you an enjoyable experience. To enjoy many game features in low settings, find a middle ground and lower the visual fidelity as much as you can.
Avoid Overclocking The Graphics Card
If your question is how long do graphics cards last? your worry should be whether you are overclocking them. Overclocking will lessen the performance and generate more heat, damaging your graphics card. Furthermore, overclocking will burden the same GPU unit since it will work harder than the manufacturer intended.
Overclocking is not bad since all manufacturers can solve such a problem. It is only that the OC pushes it past its safe space, which can lead to wear and tear on it to solidify earlier than expected. Overclocking will lessen the graphics card lifespan.