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How often do I need to change my liquid coolant?

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August 26, 2009 10:43:38 AM

How often do I need to change my liquid coolant? If I neglect to change my coolant, will this affect the cooling performance? If so, then by how much?

Thanks in advance!

More about : change liquid coolant

August 26, 2009 11:25:40 AM

Not sure of the specified times, six months to a year is what I have seen spouted by other water cooling gurus. As for neglecting it, it's not advisable. Your water loop will start to grow algae which will coat the inside of your water block(s) and radiator. Think of algae like dust on a heatsink. This will hamper direct heat transfer from the block(s) to the liquid and the liquid to the radiator. As I hear it, it is also very hard to remove once it's there, especially from the radiator.

So my advice would be to drain your loop if you are somewhere in the timespan I have said and flush it through with clean distilled water and drain it again. Then refill it and add new additive. You may also want to wait for confirmation from someone who actually uses water cooling though, since I am only going off what I have read.

Here is a link with some instructions:

http://www.maximumpc.com/article/how_to_maintain_your_w...

Here's another:

http://www.custompc.co.uk/howtos/walkthru/601551/clean-...
a c 324 K Overclocking
August 26, 2009 3:11:09 PM

Every 6 months or so is a good rule of thumb. You will also want to disassemble all your blocks...in fact...the entire loop.
Related resources
a c 86 K Overclocking
August 26, 2009 4:25:22 PM

I drain, fill run for an hour or so, drain and fill. Thats good for every 6 months. The next 6 months I do this:

Cleaning a loop, not a new loop: I do this once a year, I drain and refill at 6 months, the next time I do this……
Wash hands very well, getting rid of hand oils.
For pumps and blocks, fittings, clamps, acrylic res/block parts.... not hose, tear it to smallest pieces, put in a bowl, heat water up not to boiling add 10% vinegar, when hot, pour over parts. Rinse in 10 min or so. Put aside.
The bocks will probably have some black oxidation. Take the copper parts out of the pile of parts you took out of the water. Dry well and pour ketchup on them, and set aside. Only the copper parts need this.
Rad cleaning: fill with very almost boiling hot water. Let sit 10 minutes, drain half out and shake for 5 min. Repeat till liquid is clean.
All the pump, block, fittings, and clamps, inspect, get in the tiniest corners with a tooth brush. Kind of meditative, time consuming, you learn a lot about o-ring size, how it all feels. Run a rag using a coat hanger and dish soap through the tubing, rinse well.
Rinse all the parts and hose with distilled, dry then really dry with an air compressor (nice extra step to get rid of water spots). Don’t need to dry the inside of the hose.
Now on to the copper parts, they should have been soaking an hour or two. A toothbrush and ketchup should clean much of the oxidation. It probably won’t be like new, but pretty darn good. Rinse, dry, and blow the parts.
That’s it.


a b K Overclocking
August 26, 2009 7:25:23 PM

i got bored of cleaning my loop so went for phase :D  now all i do i crap my self when it doesnt boot as water got it :p 
a c 86 K Overclocking
August 27, 2009 3:35:29 AM

LOL!
August 27, 2009 4:07:30 AM

Thanks for the help guys. I'm too lazy to disassemble everything. Can I just drain the old liquid, run the loop with distilled water and algae killer, then after a few days, drain the distilled water, then fill her up with a proper liquid coolant? (I use thermaltake green liquid coolant)

I didn't notice algae buildup in the tubes. I did notice some brown discoloration in the water, I suspect it's copper.... or rust? :pt1cable: 
August 27, 2009 4:44:34 AM

ruffopurititiwang said:
Thanks for the help guys. I'm too lazy to disassemble everything. Can I just drain the old liquid, run the loop with distilled water and algae killer, then after a few days, drain the distilled water, then fill her up with a proper liquid coolant? (I use thermaltake green liquid coolant)

I didn't notice algae buildup in the tubes. I did notice some brown discoloration in the water, I suspect it's copper.... or rust? :pt1cable: 


If you follow that link for CustomPC, they suggest using a commercially available cleaner. It will kill algae and remove copper oxide. Have a look.
a c 86 K Overclocking
August 27, 2009 5:40:41 AM

If your lazy, go air. Have a nice day.
August 27, 2009 7:49:48 AM

Conumdrum said:
If your lazy, go air. Have a nice day.


I'm now running 4.3 Ghz OC on my i7 920 D0. I can't do that with air cooling. If I can find a faster way to clean my loop, then I'll do that instead. Remember: lazyness is the mother of invention.
August 27, 2009 8:34:53 AM

If you use sterile water, sterile parts and assemble in a sterile environment then you should never have to change your coolant.
a c 324 K Overclocking
August 27, 2009 12:52:28 PM

Quote:
Remember: lazyness is the mother of invention.


I'm trying to figure out how being lazy makes you motivated enough to create something else, when it's just as simple to do it the normal way?
August 27, 2009 8:28:11 PM

croc said:
If you use sterile water, sterile parts and assemble in a sterile environment then you should never have to change your coolant.


That would be true if the loop was completely sealed or in a vacuum. Airborne bacteria and contaminants make it into the reservior. Also even in a sterile environment, you can't stop the copper from oxidizing.
a c 86 K Overclocking
August 28, 2009 3:02:42 AM

You have odd brown stuff growing now? Well your past the rinse and forget stage. Your in for a major job. You have to do it.
a c 324 K Overclocking
August 29, 2009 1:41:36 AM

^^Also, tubing is actually porous, so even though it seems to be 'watertight' it is not. You will lose a tiny bit of water over the course of time through the tubing, but I would be willing to bet you really wouldn't notice if you kept up on your maintenance. You would actually see coolant level changes far more due to air bubbles in your rad.
February 17, 2012 8:36:54 PM

rubix_1011 said:
Quote:
Remember: lazyness is the mother of invention.


I'm trying to figure out how being lazy makes you motivated enough to create something else, when it's just as simple to do it the normal way?


People invented the car because they didn't want to walk...
The dishwasher because we didn't want to wash dishes...
The Vacuum because sweeping was a pain...

As humans we're always looking to simplify individual processes in order to create bigger, better and far more complex machines. The very computer you're typing on is merely a bunch of simplistic coding algorithms all working together to accomplish a complex function; as are the biological cells which keep you alive. His statement is accurate, as is yours... it's only the perception that's different.

In our efforts to do less we allow ourselves opportunities to accomplish more... I can do this all day. ;p
a c 324 K Overclocking
February 17, 2012 11:46:42 PM

You also posted on a thread that had been dormant for 2.5 years. Please open a new thread with valid discussion information for all members...I haven't seen any of these forum users on for over a year.

Please stop reviving dead threads- check the date of last post before adding a comment if you are digging through forum archives.
!