Is it true some heavy coolers damage the motherboard over the years?


I have heard heavy CPU coolers damaging the motherboard over the years. Currently I have the Tuniq Tower Ultra 120 Extreme and I have been using it past 3 years and 3 months and now my motherboard is slowly dying (ethernet dies randomly for hours, unable to boot the PC at all, etc.)

I know that at least with the case of Tuniq I have used an additional support plate that is placed behind the motherboard, but is this enough?

I am considering buy a smaller CPU cooler for my new PC. ASRock allows the use of LGA-775 coolers on their new P67 motherboards, but I have started to dislike the size of my cooler and I am becoming paranoid of the health effects it will have on my new motherboard.
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More about true heavy coolers damage motherboard years
  1. If you're really that worried, why not buy an Corsair H50/H70 as your cooler? It's compatible to an 1155 board!
  2. You say your CPU is 3 years old?Have you O.C.'ed it at all?
    If you've O.C.ed for the past 3 years than it's a possibilty that it's just nearing the end of it's lifecycle,which would explain all of the errors.If it hasn't been O.C.ed than it's a possiblity the mobo's dying.

    Theirs no reason why the cooler should damage the's the same weight as the day you put it on it should be the same now.The Tuniq Tower is still a very good cooler and to this day competes with the best.I do not believe it's causing/caused and damage at all.I wish i had one myself.
  3. The CPU is fine and so are the RAM modules. I have done some tests and also run prime and no problems occurred. It's just the Ethernet and booting that are not functioning and I suspect it's the motherboard.
  4. Have you O.C.ed the mobo?NB or anything?

    An Ethernet problem defnitly suggests the mobo.But the not booting problem could be the mobo,cpu or the hard drive.
  5. I'll just get Zalman CSPS10x Extreme and a new ASRock P67 Extreme4 board with some SF powered SSD and forget my current problems. I just wanted to hear if anyone thought that a cooler could damage the board.
  6. I doubt a properly mounted heat-sink damages the mobo unless it's mounting screws are much too tight.
    As for your cooler selection a Zalman Performa cools just as well as the Extreme version and weighs/cost much less.
    Plus i agree the TT 120 is a very good cooler and i'd probably re-use it,especially on a cool running SB platform.
  7. What about Zalman's Quiet and Flex models? My local shop has these offerings:

    Extreme 58€
    Quiet 50€
    Flex 42€
    Performa 40€
  8. Most all the heavy coolers come with good strong steel backplates, I've used the Tuniq myself and quite a few other large coolers with no motherboard problems because of their mounting.
  9. I've seen some reviews on the Performa and their good.I would look into the Xigmatek Aeigr.Basicly anything with more than 4 heat pipes and Direct heat pipe contant is a good cooler.
  10. Would you guys pay the extra 10€ for Quiet instead of getting a Performa? I think I'll avoid Extreme just because it's heavier.
  11. I would suggest the Cooler Master Hyper 212+

    It will perform almost the same if not better than the Zalmans because it has Direct Heat Pipe Contact.It really makes a difference.
  12. Take a look here,might persuade your discesion...
  13. purple stank said:
    I would suggest the Cooler Master Hyper 212+

    It will perform almost the same if not better than the Zalmans because it has Direct Heat Pipe Contact.It really makes a difference.

    Direct Heat Pipe makes no difference whatsoever according to this review and many others i've read.,2535.html
    "Also worth mentioning is that the top four contenders in today’s comparison did not use direct-contact heat pipes, but instead relied upon copper heat spreaders to interface the integrated heat spreader of our CPU."
    None of the top air-coolers currently available feature DHPC.
    Which includes anything by Noctua,Thermalright,or Prolimatech.
    I'm not saying the 212+ is a bad recommendation it's a great cooler i have one.
    Just saying DHCP isn't superior.
  14. kaisellgren said:
    Would you guys pay the extra 10€ for Quiet instead of getting a Performa? I think I'll avoid Extreme just because it's heavier.

    The Performa is still a very good value and will allow dual fans.The Quiet is designed for 1 fan unless you're willing to experiment.(no 2nd fan clip holes or anything).
  15. The truth is that if it is mounted properly it should not be the cause of motherboard failure, especially since the heavier coolers (including yours) usually include a back plate to spread and relieve the pressure. The person who said 'it is the same weight as the day you installed it' either didn't think it out or doesn't know what they are talking about... Pressure over 3years has a wearing affect that puts more strain than the same pressure over 30 seconds, so I see why you would be concerned. BUT I think you were right when you called it paranoia. Our brains always search for a "why" when something goes wrong and it this case the CPU is literally the most obvious possibility because it is huge, one of the first things you see, and in every way overbearing compared to the rest of the potential causes. However, if you dont fixate on that, there are many other explanations that would explain a motherboard failing after over 3+ years (after all, most are warrentied for 2yrs or less).

    Just a few examples:
    1) HEAT- if you bought an aftermarket sink then you know heat can kill. Well it isn't just true of your CPU and maybe the rest of your MB isn't getting the cooling TLC that your CPU is. Capacitors or another chipset on the motherboard could easily have taken some heat damage over the past 3years and may be slowly giving out.
    2) DIRTY POWER - 3 years can mean a lot of power fluctuation. Power outrages and recoveries are the obvious ones and any one of them could single handedly fry something. But on top of those... old wiring in your house, a cheap or malfunctioning power supply, poor quality local electrical grid, a tiny damage to a wire or circuit, a minor factory defect etc. can all strain electrical components and (like the weight) after 3 years of that strain, something could give out
    3) DUST - rarely causes it's own problems but if you didn't clean your case out regularly it can very easily add to almost any other issue. It can certainly add to heat by insulating components and blocking airflow. Also if dust gets in certain places it can block or short out connections putting more strain on electronics
    4) CORROSION - might sound silly to some people, but this one applies more if you live near a body of water or back east where it gets very humid... But if you do, then this can actually be a problem. A rusty spot will not conduct electricity as well as a the original metal and, as thin as most wires and circuitry are, it does not take much rust at all to cause resistance or even stoppage in electricity through a line. I had a 10/100/1000 NIC fail one time and tried to quick fix it by replacing it with an old 10/100 NIC that I had kept for just such an emergency. The card looked fine but did not work either. I started to suspect the PCI slot had actually failed, until I looked closer. I live at the beach and the old spare had been kept in a closet in a little box and the salty sea air had corroded the connector wires inside the Ethernet port so there was almost nothing left of them. No way they were completing a connection.

    Anyways! I am not going to list every possible thing that could cause a motherboard to fail, so before I get any more long-winded than I already have, let me get to my really point. Over 3+ years there are SO many things that could cause a motherboard to fail. Also, i am not saying that this COULD NOT BE one of those possibilities. I am just saying i don't think it one worth loosing any sleep over. I really don't think torque is even very high on the "most likely list". Heat sinks are engineered and tested very thoroughly and the backplates are designed specifically to prevent that problem. Not to say mistakes can't be made, but if any model or brand had a serious issue with weight it would be blanketing the forums. Gamers and overclockers are obsessive people :-) and cooling is a passion for many. If this were a serious issue... It would be screamed from the rooftops!

    My personal advice would be this. If you OC then put weight out of your mind all together! a) weight may not be an issue AT ALL. More importantly b) even if it is a small issue... weight will NEVER be as big of a problem as heat. Overheating won't wait 3 years to kill ;-) So pick the lesser of two evils and move on. If you do not OC then that is probably more cooler than you actually need anyways, so scratch that itch and buy a lighter cooler. If the posts here did not put the concerns out of your head, then it will be money well spent to get it off your mind?

    Best Wishes.
  16. Someone is late to the party....
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