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Adhesive problems installing replacement chipset heatsink/fan

By patrickc284
May 6, 2006
Topic Status:
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  1. Hi,

    I recently tried installing a new northbridge heatsink and fan to replace the original one on my Abit IS-7 478 motherboard. The old heatsink (some ultra light aluminum piece of trash) was mounted on using a rigid piece of wire for lack of a better description. there are four hooks equidistantly placed around the northbridge for it to hook it across the chipset in a diagonal direction.

    The replacement fan I bought was a Vantec CCB-A1C, which came with two plastic clips (which is completely incompatible with the attachment hooks on my motherboard). I noticed it was a VGA cooler, but it seemed about the same as my northbridge cooler. Maybe this was part of my mistake, I don't know.

    But, being completely inexperienced with this (aside from attaching the heatsink for my CPU), I found that when I put the thermal tape on that there is only a small area in the center of the chipset where there is actually contact made with the heatsink. The center is raised whereas the rest of the chipset is recessed about 1mm below it. I don't know if I need thicker thermal tape, or if I'm supposed to leave the tape sticky only on one side (and leave the paper on one side of the double-sided tape).

    My northbridge temp has gone up from about 32-33C to 35C, not sure if that's a big deal. My P4 3.0C runs about 32 Idle/47 full load.

    Maybe I need a heatsink/fan specifically for a northbridge instead of a VGA-style one. Obviously, I could use a little help... So if anyone out there can point me to any articles or give me a heads up on what to do, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks!

    -Pat

    Specs:
    XP Pro SP2
    P4 3.0C HT
    Abit IS-7
    2x 512 Corsair Value
    Masscool 70mm Ball Fan/Copper h/s
    Western Digital SATA3 80GB
    NEC DVD±RW
    Samsung CD-RW/DVD
    Audigy 2 ZS
    eVGA FX5500 256mb
    Trendnet full duplex gigabit
    Aspire X-Plorer
  2. patrickc284

    patrickc284 Newcomer, in training Topic Starter Posts: 24

    P.S. Running under full load for four minutes, the CPU was at 51-52C and the northbridge at 54C. I stopped it at this point. The CPU promptly dropped to 44C after about 10 seconds while the northbridge only dropped 1-2C.
  3. patrickc284

    patrickc284 Newcomer, in training Topic Starter Posts: 24

    Anyone? Please? :)
  4. kirock

    kirock Newcomer, in training Posts: 1,598

    I'm pretty sure your solution is not going to work. A northbridge fan runs at 7000 RPM to keep the chipset cool and the VGA fan will only run at half that. Add the bad physical contact and you got a fried chip waiting to happen.

    Return the VGA fan, replace the old fan and order the correct part I would suggest.

    Edit: I saw the fan you got, actually that does look like it should work fine. It's all in the mounting. If you can't get it to sit properly you may still have to send it back. 54C is getting too for the northbridge.
  5. KingCody

    KingCody TechSpot Guru Posts: 1,568   +7

    you should also use a good thermal compound like arctic silver 5, instead of the cheap tape that it came with.
  6. ModGuru

    ModGuru Newcomer, in training Posts: 20

  7. patrickc284

    patrickc284 Newcomer, in training Topic Starter Posts: 24

    Yea, I saw it at 56C yesterday under load so I immediately shut down the program that was taking up all the resources.

    I did find a possible solution: Arctic Silver Thermal Adhesive. If I can get that to fill in the gaps, I may do better. I wish Abit (and lots of other manufacturers) would put a better NB cooler on! The original one had been making noise almost since I got it.
  8. patrickc284

    patrickc284 Newcomer, in training Topic Starter Posts: 24

    Well, after a few days now, I finally received some Thermal Adhesive and ArcticSilver 5 from Newegg. I added the adhesive to the Northbridge cooler and the grease to the CPU cooler. So far, immediately after installation, I am already running a few degrees cooler on the CPU and processor. Once the Northbridge has had enough time to cure, I'll post what temps I'm getting.
  9. patrickc284

    patrickc284 Newcomer, in training Topic Starter Posts: 24

    Well, after letting the adhesive cure overnight, there were some marked improvements. The 54C I was hitting before used to occur after about 1.5 to 2 minutes. This time it took nine minutes under 100% load to reach 54C, at which point the CPU was running at 50C steady (after adding ArcticSilver 5).

    It was only after about four or five minutes at continuous 100% load that I started to see 48 or 49C on the northbridge. It could definitely be better, but I think that's the best I'm going to be able to do without adding a giant heatsink, which would be hard because I don't have much space next to my CPU heatsink to fit one. It would have to be taller instead of wider. Anyhow, those are my results.
  10. kirock

    kirock Newcomer, in training Posts: 1,598

    I think those results are acceptable. My chipset sits around 45-48C underload too. Good fudge factoring there pat.

    Cheers.
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