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Too much thermal paste...

 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 09:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Too much thermal paste...

Was not performing test or experiment, just kind of happened.

When installing the cooler for our CPU, most of us use a bead of thermal paste smaller than a pea and then apply the cooler and evenly cinch it down, hoping to spread the paste evenly. After the usual AIO install I noticed that my temps were pretty high compared to the 3600x stock cooler it ships with, that I used to get the system to boot.

A few days later I eventually got around to reinstalling the AIO as I was not liking the temps. Instead of using a small bead and crushing it, I used the same size bead, but spread it evenly with my finger to all four corners. I then took the AIO and reinstalled, but my temps were still higher than the stock cooler.

I took the pump/block back off the CPU and inspected. Wiped off the water block to check it's flatness. The waterblock on the Enermax Liqtech II 240 is as flat as a machine can make it. Seeing that the spread over the CPU looked even I decided to wipe off the waterblock and reinstall with the thin layer of paste left on the CPU.

Well, when I got the waterblock back on the CPU there was a significant temp drop. I can only contribute this to removal of 50% of the original paste spread over the CPU being removed, allowing for a thinner layer to move heat through faster.

So far all future thermal paste use, I will apply a slightly smaller bead, spread the bead with a finger, install waterblock and compress the paste; remove the waterblock and wiper clean, then reinstall the waterblock with what thermal paste is left on the CPU. This seems to be the proper amount of thermal paste?!

It's like I made a discovery that other people probably know about!

Thanks for reading!
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 10:07 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by PDXMark View Post
Was not performing test or experiment, just kind of happened.

When installing the cooler for our CPU, most of us use a bead of thermal paste smaller than a pea and then apply the cooler and evenly cinch it down, hoping to spread the paste evenly. After the usual AIO install I noticed that my temps were pretty high compared to the 3600x stock cooler it ships with, that I used to get the system to boot.

A few days later I eventually got around to reinstalling the AIO as I was not liking the temps. Instead of using a small bead and crushing it, I used the same size bead, but spread it evenly with my finger to all four corners. I then took the AIO and reinstalled, but my temps were still higher than the stock cooler.

I took the pump/block back off the CPU and inspected. Wiped off the water block to check it's flatness. The waterblock on the Enermax Liqtech II 240 is as flat as a machine can make it. Seeing that the spread over the CPU looked even I decided to wipe off the waterblock and reinstall with the thin layer of paste left on the CPU.

Well, when I got the waterblock back on the CPU there was a significant temp drop. I can only contribute this to removal of 50% of the original paste spread over the CPU being removed, allowing for a thinner layer to move heat through faster.

So far all future thermal paste use, I will apply a slightly smaller bead, spread the bead with a finger, install waterblock and compress the paste; remove the waterblock and wiper clean, then reinstall the waterblock with what thermal paste is left on the CPU. This seems to be the proper amount of thermal paste?!

It's like I made a discovery that other people probably know about!

Thanks for reading!
Should not get such results unless your mounting pressure sucks. Excess paste should be completely pushed off the IHS edges if you used a little too much. Otherwise the mounting pressure is terrible or the thermal paste is old, worn out, or just very bad quality. Or did you not clean off the old thermal paste before applying new paste??

I use two intersecting diagonal lines "X" of both Kryonaut and Thermalright TFX and others and diagonal lines are a lot more paste than just a dot in the middle, usually leaving a bit more than needed, but a bit too much is better than a bit too little, and I never had any issues.

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-08-2020, 10:59 AM
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+1 to Falkentyne, also the only place where too much paste is actually a problem is on the naked die of gpu/cpu, but it depends on their size

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 06-09-2020, 09:56 AM - Thread Starter
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It was probably just a bad mount then. On my last seat I only turned the mount screws a '360 degree turn' at a time, in a cross pattern. Until everything was hand tight, then I did four more 180* turns in cross pattern until the screws felt like they were tight, but has not flexed the MB.

I know the game is old, and currently running an old GTX275SC on the new system(until my 2060 Super arrives today), I'm hitting 52c in Project Reality with unrestricted frame rates. I will have "Hell Let Loose" by the end of the week and will test with that too!
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