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Porknz

...computer started crashing last night...started taking it apart today and found a leak...

41 posts in this topic

So, I got a ton of help here putting in my first water cooled loop late December.  System has run great for four months.  Yesterday I started getting crashes while playing a new game.  Today I got booted out of fallout 4.  I decided about half an hour ago to pull the gpu and try a different one.  I found coolant along the pci express part of the gpu and inside of the pci express slot...

Looking around more, I found a dried mark on my 960 evo and on a cable coming out of the psu, and on a heatsink on the motherboard.

1.  First of all, what do I do immediately?

2.  What do I do later this week or tomorrow night at the earliest for more long term help?

Super depressed.  I saved up for about 8 years to put this new build together.  Now I'm worried the old gpu and the new m.2 drive and the new psu and the new motherboard are all shot.

...thanks for any help...

 

3.  And what can I do to try to get the coolant off of the gpu?  I know there is no way to get it out of the pci express slot on the motherboard...

 

Wiped off what I could using q-tips as I had seen that suggestion elsewhere.  Currently a fan blowing on it, but the ek coolant mixed with distilled seems kind of greasy.

 

Do I need to pull my cpu too?  Is there likely coolant in there too?

 

Man, this sucks...

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Tomshardware folks are telling me my motherboard and gpu are likely fried at the very least.  

 

Where do I even start with trying to figure out if I have any working parts left?  I have no idea how long the leak was affecting the system.

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How do you find out if you have any working parts?  Pull your system apart, make sure everything is dry.  Go back to air cooling for everything, fire it up and see what works... 

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^ agreed.

I only use distilled water in my perosnal builds. "Coolants" marketed for computer liquid loops  are gimmicks.  

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Okay.  So drain the loop and pull it apart.  Let everything dry for another day.  Can I boot up without a cooler on my cpu just to test if I have any working parts left?  if I have any working parts left, do I dare try to leak test and use the water cooling loop again?

 

Thanks for helping me through this.

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I think the Tom's Hardware people are jumping the gun a bit.  It doesn't sound like you drowned anything.  It kind of sounds like everything was fine till a game pushed the GPU to start using more of the PCI slot, then a short and it kicked you, not really like you shorted something until it started spewing smoke.  Hopefully the crashes kept it from causing any real damage.  

I think you've got the idea with drying it out for another day, but I'd throw some sort of cooler on the cpu.  I expect you're gonna have to go all in to see if there's damage, i.e. see if it posts, boots, and some stress testing, particularly on the GPU, and then I'd run it for at least a week in normal use to make sure there isn't some little bobble somewhere that throws it.  It'd suck to get it all put back together just to find that some mission in a game will crash it even though it does everything else fine.

As far as the loop, if you can tell what was leaking, fix or replace it and continue on.  Just the same as if you'd have found it while leak testing.  Unfortunately it didn't show up till you had it up and running.  

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I think I'll have to take everything out and leak test again to see if I can identify leaking while it happens (though maybe it only happens under stress as you suggested) but I know it's from from the block at least already.

 

I'll also look for a cheap air cooler for the CPU and buy one of those too to test the parts in case they still work.  Thanks guys.

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Maybe I'll wait for news on those new GPU mounts before I do a tear down and rebuild. ;). MSI says their 1080ti EK will be out soon too.  Maybe it's a crappy situation with a purpose.

 

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16 hours ago, Porknz said:

 

I think I'll have to take everything out and leak test again to see if I can identify leaking while it happens (though maybe it only happens under stress as you suggested) but I know it's from from the block at least already.

 

I was talking more of the short coming from using the GPU more.  Like maybe there's a couple of pins that had fluid on them that don't get used until the GPU needs more power or bandwidth.  That's why under normal use it was fine, but crapped out in a game.

If it's from the block, and it sounds like it is, I'd pull it, set it on a paper towel and fill it with some fluid.  It should show up even without pressure.  Loops don't really build a lot of pressure since you're only dealing with a small amt of fluid for thermal expansion.  Might be that it's just got a bad seal on an o-ring or a bad o-ring.  Alternatively, you could cap off all the ports but one, put a piece of tubing on the last port, submerge the block in a pan of water and blow on the tube, you should get air bubbles at the leak.  Would be a quicker way of finding it.

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It's an ek l360 kit.  The block wasn't a good fit from the start.  When I was building I had to verify here and with ek that it was okay the copper block is pushing on some of the caps around the cpu.  Seems odd but I guess it's okay.

 

I'll pull the loop and test it in distilled and see if I find leaks or a crack or something.  That seems like a better idea than leak testing again to start.

 

Thanks as always.

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lJnDAzc.jpg

 

First drain.  Do I need to get someone to help me tip the case around before I get all of the water out of the rad etc.? 

 

Will removing the water block from the motherboard still maintain the loop?  I think it will, but first timer question.

 

Thanks guys.

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Got some help tipping the case but I feel like I only have about two reservoirs of fluid and I feel like there should be a lot more in there...

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The waterblock is a sealed unit. You can remove it from the board. (Not sure how noob you are so...)...Be careful separating the block from the chip. The thermal paste can have a pretty good grip, especially when cold and dry.

These things tend to be works/dead when there's a short. I've never seen a fried card work partially.

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Complete noob to water.  Thanks for the advice on the block and the thermal paste.  Now I'm worried I'll damage the cpu removing the block...

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Block came off very easily.  Found two huge cracks in the block where the factory screw goes through the materials.  Is there any way I did this?  Being a noob I wouldn't have had any idea they were there out of the box.

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And what are the two holes drilled into the block?

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Judging by the location of the cracks in the acrylic, It does look like you over-torqued the screws in mounting plate. 

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Kind of what I figured.  Rookie mistake.  Taking it off and realizing all the screws were for was to maintain metal to metal contact it became more obvious.  I probably got caught up in making sure everything was tight and wouldn't leak.  Off to order a new block...

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Had the same problem in my Shinai build with the bottom acrylic cap on the res.  It's an acetal cap now. :) That's the one thing that always scares me about using acrylic blocks.  At least you got it figured out!

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I think acetal is tougher, won't crack as easy acrylic.  The acetal looks better than that capped acrylic anyways.  Shouldn't affect your system at all, acetal is pretty non-reactive and is used a lot in cooling system parts.  You've probably got acetal for your res and pump housing.

Honestly, at this point you could pick out any cpu block you want.  So if you wanted to jump up to the Supremacy EVO or even to a Swiftech Apogee XL2 or Watercool Heatkiller IV for a different look, now's the time to do it.  Personally, I think the cheaper MX looks just that, cheap.

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