In a world where electronics are abundant, and almost every aspect of our lives is incorporated so profoundly with the digitization that has taken over the world, there’s no surprise in the thought that it has both positive and negative impacts.
While most companies are coming up with products that guarantee users long durability and lifespan, like any other electronic device, it is subjected to failure sometimes without a good reason. Likewise is the topic we will be tackling in this article. More specifically, the durability of GPUs when it comes to mining.
As more people are divulging in the world of cryptocurrency, high-performance graphic cards are a must for all miners. But does mining affect GPU? That is the question we will attempt to answer in this article.
Continue reading to learn more.
How Crypto Mining Negatively Affects The GPU? What Causes Failure?
The answer to whether crypto mining actually affects GPUs is not so simple. While it is accepted that crypto mining requires GPU, and all graphic card manufacturers attempt to make their product last as long as possible, there is still a chance that the device will fail. But the reason behind this failure can have a lot of factors and not just crypto mining specifically.
All GPUs are designed to perform the best in their own environment for anywhere between 5 to 10 years. However, this is the case only if you take good care of the system and preserve its functionality. The most significant contributor to GPU failure is crypto mining because of the sheer amount of heat it generates, which causes the graphic cards to fail.
If you’re wondering if crypto mining actually affects the life of your GPU, the simple answer is no. But it is also only with conditions. While crypto mining on its own is not a huge threat to the life of your GPU, how you use the GPU is very important.
If you’re a crypto miner who is constantly running your GPU on full throttle every day without proper airflow and ventilation, you’ll eventually wear out your GPU. But there are many reasons why your GPU might stop working. Some of the factors that can contribute to a lower lifespan of GPUS concerning crypto mining are given below:
Abuse Of Function
One of the main reasons why GPUs fail as often as they do is when crypto mining is due to overuse. Mining produces a lot of heat which in turn affects the performance of the GPU. So if you’re overusing the GPU, its lifespan reduces significantly.
Sometimes the problem is the actual crypto mining. If you’re mining all the time, you’re sure to exhaust your GPU and kill it. Crypto mining takes a lot of graphical power, which is why GPUs are in very high demand for miners. There was a time when GPUs were extremely expensive due to the high demand and the scarcity of produce. But nowadays, realizing the popularity of crypto mining, you’ll find that many manufacturers produce and distribute GPUs. Besides this, you can also find secondhand GPUs for sale, for which you may get a much lower price point.
The opinions of secondhand graphic cards are primarily negative. Since it’s already used, you might not get much functionality. Plus, most of the time, these cards are half-melted or abused to such an extent that there’s no point in spending money on them because you probably won’t be able to put them to use.
As mentioned earlier, crypto mining produces a lot of heat, so if you’re continuously mining for extended periods of time without proper intake and exhaust channels, your GPU is bound to overheat and stop working.
In extreme cases, overuse of GPUs through crypto mining can cause the chip to melt under extreme heat. The more intensive your processing is, the higher the temperature will be. This will cause your fans to stop working or work on overdrive which is still not enough to cool down your system.
One of the main problems that cause GPUs to die. This is why miners need to know how to reduce the chances of overheating and possibly avoid them. Even though manufacturers create GPUs to sustain high heat levels, sometimes overriding the system drives it to overheat and eventually burn out from the intensive pressure.
Typically, GPUs are made to withstand at least 80 to 90 degrees Celsius of heat, but it is best if you keep a close eye on the temperature of your cards so that you don’t risk overheating. Also, remember that different manufacturers have different heat tolerance inbuilt into their graphic cards, so don’t stick to only one specification.
If you’re mining crypto throughout the day, there is a high chance that you will be overriding the system causing your fans to stop working or not work correctly. Apart from running a mining rig, even high-performing games can cause this failure in fans not spinning up as much as they should.
As a crypto miner, you might already be aware of the overheating problems when using GPUs. For this reason, you may already have the top-performing mining fans at your disposal. When these fans stop working, there’s a high chance that other parts of your GPU will ultimately stop working.
The fans keep the temperature ideal for your system to work on high performance. Hence it is vital to check your fans every once in a while and ensure that it is in top working condition. Additionally, you have to ensure that your fans are cooling the entire system, not just your GPU. You need the whole system to be running at a smooth pace to complete your tasks with ease.
GPUs generally leave their manufacturing factories with thermal paste on them. But if you’re running the system 24×7 mining crypto, it can cause overheating, which will eventually deteriorate the paste in your card. The good news, however, is that even if your thermal paste dries up, you can always reapply the paste and have it as good as new in no time.
Crypto miners already know the importance of overclocking when mining. And there’s no real problem here since developers and manufacturers guarantee that their graphic cards can withstand overclocking. Most of the latest GPUs in the market come with an automatic shutdown system if the settings are incorrectly entered. However, it doesn’t mean that there’s no real risk to your device when you overclock.
The problem arises when there is a very high level of heat generation due to overload. Since overclocking is pushing your card past its processing limits, there’s undoubtedly a lot of heat generation. In addition, if you don’t have proper ventilation for the heat to dissipate, you run a very high risk of damaging your card.
How Much Is GPU Lifespan Decreased?
Generally, all GPUs are made to last for an extended period. However, if you are overusing the card way beyond its limits, then you are bound to shorten the lifespan by a significant amount. If you preserve the card properly by using it within its limits and giving it a proper environment, you might even end up using it for 9-10 years.
However, you must remember that with electronics like graphic cards, technology is constantly evolving and changing. So even if the manufacturers create the card and make it last for 5-7 years, there’s a higher chance that you will end up buying or upgrading to a newer one before the lifespan of the card really ends.
And, of course, if you’re looking for an optimum performer, especially since your concern is crypto mining, you will want to have the best performing, latest GPUs to give you the results you need. Sometimes your GPUs might fail for no reason at all. Just as the case is with most electronics, sometimes there is no proper explanation for why it is no longer working. But in most cases, the problem is overheating.
Methods To Increase GPU Lifespan When Used In Mining
Even with all these issues regarding graphic cards, thankfully, there are a lot of ways that you can increase the lifespan of your GPUs. Here are a few of these methods that you can try:
Run Your Processing At A Lower Frame Rate
This method is relatively straightforward. Whether playing games or mining crypto, you can always lower your frame rate so that you don’t have to push your system into overdrive. Lower frame rates add less stress to your GPU, so when you want to start mining, your card won’t be so worn out that you can’t mine as much as you need to.
Maintain Proper Airflow
Proper air dissipation is necessary for your system and the GPU to cool it down. Overheating is the main factor, among others, that kills the GPU. So when you create the right environment for the system to cool down when it needs to, you can avoid causing severe damage to your GPU and your PC.
Even though the manufacturers that develop your computers incorporate adequate cooling systems in them but sometimes it is not enough. Especially when you consider crypto mining because it takes a lot out of your GPU, the heat is even higher than the system is designed to manage. You may need to add more fans to your system to allow extra cooling so that the excess heat can be extracted through these exhaust fans. Crypto miners typically use more than one card for mining. So if you’re also using multiple cards, make sure that you allow enough room for each card to have its ideal environment for proper airflow.
Try To Avoid Overclocking The Card
While many people tend to overclock their GPUs for better results and performance, it will eventually decrease the lifespan of your GPU. Overclocking adds a lot of pressure on the unit and makes it work much harder and with a higher intensity than it was manufactured for.
So naturally, there’s a high heat generation leading to damage to the GPU. Typically, overclocking is not viewed as a very negative thing by manufacturers. You can overlock your card, but it’s when you push it over its limitations that you start facing problems.
Clean The Fans
Sometimes the problem with overheating can be because the fans are not working properly. So if you are using your computer often and for extended hours, take the time to clean out your fans once in a while. Sometimes debris stuck to the fan and cooling system stop it from functioning properly. Additionally, when you do the spring cleaning for your fans, you can change them to newer fans to optimize performance if you find that they are damaged.
Are There Better Ways To Make Money Out Of Crypto Than Mining?
If you’re looking for a long-term solution for making money out of crypto that does not involve mining, investing is the best way to go about it. You can invest in crypto assets which will bring you higher returns than when you actually started investing in the asset.
However, for this strategy to work, you need to have some experience in choosing the right crypto assets. For example, cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and Ethereum are pretty stable and hence, make for great options when you’re looking for crypto assets. On the other hand, if you go for lesser-known or unstable crypto assets, you might end up losing the investment in the long run. Or even worse, you don’t make as much as you had hoped.
Buying Low And Selling High GPUs
Although it’s an ideal solution to gaining more crypto quickly, it’s easier said than done. As the name suggests, it simply means to buy crypto when it’s at a low price and then sell it when the market value increases.
But for this to work for you, you need to understand the market trends really well. You might face a significant loss if you wait to sell it when the value is higher, but you miss out because of bad market timing. Now might have to sell for even lower or the same as your buying value.
For those looking for short-term strategies, trading is an excellent way to make some money out of crypto. Just like stock market trading, the crypto market is also just as volatile. This means that there is no saying when the assets are going to increase or decrease in value.
Hence, if you’re thinking of becoming a trader in cryptocurrency, you need to have good knowledge about market trends. Skills like technical and analytical skills are required to help you make the right choices that will earn you a few extra bucks.
Receiving airdrops is one of the easy ways of earning crypto. Since they are promotional tactics, they come for free, so you don’t really have to spend any money when acquiring these tokens. However, to be eligible to receive such tokens, you might be asked by the distributors to perform certain tasks, such as joining a platform or downloading an application.
Many companies are using this marketing strategy to get their word out and get more people to advertise for them. Sometimes they might ask users to use a certain hashtag or sign up using a specific name which in turn helps get their name out.
As you can see, there’s not such massive damage that your GPU can incur due to crypto mining. In fact, if you follow these few simple methods of increasing the lifespan of your GPU, you will be able to make use of your card as well as mine crypto without any hiccups.
The main takeaway from this article is that you have to avoid overheating your system at all costs. The most common and recurring problem for GPU failures with regard to crypto mining is heat generation. So take care in managing the heat generation in the system and create a suitable environment for your card to thrive without much pressure.
We have also discussed some alternatives on how you can make money without having to mine crypto, so if you’re interested in that, you can try it.