08 Jun 2021 11:31 AM +00:00

Can cryptocurrency mining damage your GPU?

Aside from the impact on GPU supply for PC gamers and its environmental impact, one accusation aimed at cryptocurrency mining is that it harms your graphics card and wears it out quickly.

Whether you're mining for Dogecoin, Ethereum, Litecoin or Monero, these are considerations you need to take into account.

But does this statement have any truth behind it, or is it just a crypto-myth?

Is cryptocurrency mining bad for your graphics card?

The answer isn’t so simple.

Mining harms your GPU in the sense that one of its by-products is producing excess heat. If you run your mining setup 24/7 at a high temperature – above 80oC or 90oC - the GPU could sustain damage that will severely affect its lifespan.

However, mining is not alone in placing stress onto a GPU. Playing demanding games and processing data using a GPU can also wear out a GPU when at high temperatures. Similarly, overclocking your GPU too often – whether for better hash rates or better gaming performance – can also cause irredeemable damage to the GPU.

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In fact, some cryptocurrency miners even suggest mining is less harmful to your graphics card than playing the latest AAA game is. As miners seek to reach the highest possible hash rate, the GPU may reach high temperatures but will remain at a consistent one with a consistent workload. In contrast, as playing games sees the GPU fluctuate between rapid cooling and rapid heating depending on the load, this could cause more damage in the long run.

However, the major cause of damage to a graphics card – whether used for gaming or mining – is not taking proper care of the hardware components.

How to take care of your graphics card for mining

Nothing lasts forever (aside from GTA V), and you will eventually need to upgrade your GPU. Luckily, both AMD and NVIDIA keep releasing brand-new GPUs for you to choose from, so long as scalpers don't beat you to it

The best thing you can do to prolong your GPU’s lifespan (whether for gaming or mining) is to ensure its heating and cooling systems work as optimally as possible.

This includes:

  • Cleaning out your GPU fans so they can rotate properly, or replacing them if necessary;
  • Ensuring your drivers are up-to-date;
  • Keep your GPU well-ventilated and clean with a strong airflow, to prevent overheating;
  • If you have a larger mining rig with multiple cards, ensure each card has enough space for its own airflow;
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READ MORE: Who owns the most Bitcoin?

[Featured Photo by on Unsplash]