Extremely High CPU Temps. Help please!

Assembled everything today. Powered on and no bad POST beeps. Entered BIOS. Went to the hardware monitor and the CPU temp was at 85 deg cel/ 185 deg feh!!! The motherboard temps were fine. I immediately shut it down. I opened it up and placed my hand around the CPU are and CPU Fan area, no hot temps at all.

I'm pretty sure the BIOS was right and I probably didn't feel any heat because it wasn't on for too long.

Obviously, its probably a problem with installing the heatsink correctly. I have the ZEROtherm ZEN FZ120 and used MX-2 Artic Cooling thermal paste. The only thing I can think of is that the heatsink isn't close enough to the CPU. Isn't the copper suppose to touch the CPU?

This is my first build, so I am still a novice. I knew if I was going to have any problems it would come from the CPU heat sink...

Let me know what you guys think it is, and how I can fix it. Thanks!


GPU: SAPPHIRE 100259-1GL Radeon HD 4870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card
Ram:G.SKILL PI Black 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory
HD: Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
Optical Drive: SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R 2MB Cache SATA 22X DVD Burner
PSU: PC Power & Cooling S75CF Red 750W
CPU Heatsink: ZEROtherm ZEN FZ120
Case: COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Mobo: ASUS P5Q-E LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard .
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor Model BX80570E8400
OS: Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit English for System Builders 1pk DSP OEI DVD
7 answers Last reply
More about extremely high temps please
  1. im gonna say either you didn't put enough thermal paste, or the heatsink isn't seated properly. the copper is supposed to make contact with the cpu, but there needs to be a thin layer of thermal between. or else the heat won't transfer through.
  2. First, was there a protective piece of plastic on the cooler that was not removed?

    A bad installation can lead to higher temperatures, and even cpu throttling.
    With the pc powered down, gently rock the cooler to see if it is on solid, or if it wobbles a bit.
    If you reinstall,
    Don't forget to clean the parts and reapply fresh thermal compound every time.
    Don't try to reuse the TIM.
    Rubbing alcohol is OK as a cleaner.
    I use a paper coffee filter to clean with because it is lint free.
    Any name brand TIM should be OK(as-5, Mx-2, etc.)
    When applying the TIM, don't use too much, because it can act as an insulator.
    Don't apply too little, either, because it won't spread and fill the microscopic
    imperfections in the surfaces. A dollop about the size of a grain
    of rice should be about right.
    Alternatively, a very thin stripe is ok too. Go to the Arctic silver web site, where there is a pictorial tutorial on how to do this for various cpu's.
  3. Nik_I said:
    the copper is supposed to make contact with the cpu, but there needs to be a thin layer of thermal between. or else the heat won't transfer through.
    Not exactly correct. Yes the cooler heat sink is supposed be in direct contact with the CPU heat spreader. Because the heat sink and CPU heat spreader are never perfectly flat it's the thermal compound that fills the micro gaps replacing any air (not a good heat conductor).

    I agree with geofelt. The usual mistake is too much thermal compound.
    My guess is that the heat sink might not be evenly tightened down on the CPU. That could cause the heatsink to tilt onto the CPU instead of lying flat.
  4. The Paste should fill the voids between the copper tubing and the heatsink. This isn't rocket surgery so a small anount of Artic Silver (A little larger then of a Grain of Rice) should work fine. I just installed a 90mm Rifle cooler without using new paste and it increased my CPU temps by 10C until I went and cleaned both surfaces with Artic Silver cleaner and re-installed the HSF, the temps dropped dramatically after a CLEAN install.
  5. toledo_speedo said:
    90mm Rifle cooler
    Maybe you meant 92mm? You probably know that "rifle" is a type of bearing, right? Other types of bearings are Sleeve and Ball, just as examples). 92mm sleeve cooler, 92mm ball cooler, 92mm rifle cooler.

    Are these the "voids between the copper tubing and the heatsink" you want him to fill? That would make for a pretty nasty looking install.

  6. Hey guys!

    Thanks for all the help. Well, I reseated the heatsink and everything is fine now. The CPU temperature is now a cool 19-20 deg Celsius.

    The problem was the bracket that you attach to the bottom of the heatsink that has the screws that you then attach to the motherboard. It is almost a perfect square shape so you can attach to the heatsink in two different ways. Well apparently the way I had it before made a kinda of arch shape on two sides of the bracket, that were higher above the level of the copper plate. So, the arches of the metal bracket were probably preventing the copper from fitting to the right level. When reinstalling, I just turned the bracket the other way, and it was clear that the copper plate had the highest clearance, and would be the first thing to touch.

    Funny thing is that I noticed it the first time I installed it, and thought, "how is the copper going to touch when the bracket is higher than the plate?". However, I thought when I screwed it in, the arches of the bracket would straighten out and the plate would be the first thing to touch.

    Simple, but serious error I guess. I'm glad I checked the hardware monitor in the BIOS.

    Thanks again for all the help.

    P.S. Completed pictures of my system will be up soon in my original thread in "New System Build" forum
  7. Good job!
Ask a new question

Read More

Homebuilt CPUs Systems