CPU heatsink fell off

Hello all, would like some tips, hopefully an easy one as I've read a few other similar threads.

I came home to a powered down computer which would only go to my BIOS screen and shut down within 15 seconds. Opened up my case and the CPU heatsink/fan assy had fallen off slightly - it was still on but loose. There isn't much of a retaining clip, just a simple square latch on top. The thermal glue seems to have become quite old and looking at my silver heatsink it appears I am quite lucky I have a working CPU still - was able to set my computer on it's side and the OS comes up and everything is happy days. It definitely looks like there was a fair bit of heat on both heatsinks...

Do you think I simply need to clean my silver heatsink and my heatsink/fan off and re-apply thermal glue? On the bottom of my heatsink there is a lever that has a lock icon on it, but there is only a matching section on the top - i.e. no latch on the bottom portion of the heatsink.

It is an AV-Z7UH40Q001-1709 AMD heatsink/fan assy. It appears maybe the bottom portion of the mounted casing on the board is broken. I'm living in Australia now (this was built in the US) and I'm not at all confident in my ability to find replacement parts, but I could always look to Singapore I suppose if that's the solution.


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  1. Best answer
    clean that bad boy, CPU and heat sink, re-apply new paste.
    sounds like you think the latches are broke. not only do they hold the cooler in place, but they usually keep it firm.

    i guess try to re set it and see if she holds, but if there are physically broken pieces, it probably wont work. you can try to look for stock replacement parts on ebay, etc, otherwise, check into cheaper after market coolers,.

    remember less paste = better.
  2. Thanks. I guess I'm wondering if maybe it looks so messy because it wasn't seated that firmly which caused an air gap, leading to higher heat and resulting in my current ugly paste situation.

    Thanks again! Chris
  3. you should never have so much paste that is squeezes out over the edge. i have maybe a two grains of rice worth on my cpu heatsink. you want it as thin as possible. id say you could use at least 50% less than what i see. i would be worried a bit about that scorched area, but hey, if it still works, i guess let her rip.

    is that AM2? AM3? most coolers require you to take off that stock clips, and use theirs, so if the cpu isnt bunk, a cheap aftermarket be the best way to go. the hyper 212+ is the best priced cooler on the market at the moment. roughly 30$ USD.
  4. do a good clean up for the old paste and replace with a pea spot of new one.also on the picture the bracket on the right look broken so get a aftermarket cooler there is some dealer in australia just google it
  5. Do the card spread, pea method works good, but card is better if you are willing to put the time into it.
  6. You definitely need a new CPU cooler
  7. I have been looking at them - better to put in $60-$80 and have peace of mind then put this back in and 3 months from now wish I didn't fry my CPU.

    I'm a noob on building PC's (this one I picked up from the IT guy at my job) so I am still trying to figure out specs and make sure my aftermarket cooler is the right dimensions. I am looking at the Thermaltake FRIO which I understand is built for overclocking (which I don't do or intend to start doing), but it seems like a good one. I think its bigger than the stock heatsink so I've got to stop in the store later tonight and check.

    I have never monitored CPU temp but it appears pretty easy to do and it's probably a good idea - summer is coming up soon in Brisbane, I don't have central air, and I expect my ambient temps to be around 30, so my computer is likely to be stressing. I have noticed lately that my fans have been loud - I leave it running with 2 hr idle time but its often on for much of the day.

    I've purchased some thermal paste and cleaner kit, what is the best way to clean the CPU chip, pop it out or try to leave it in the chassis and just wipe it down from there? Would prefer to leave it in if possible, the less handling the better.
  8. CM Hyper 212+ for cooler, you can leave it in or pull it out, up to you. Just be more careful if you leave it in.
  9. well i would also sat be very careful if you take it out. a bent pin on your CPU will make this fan debacle seem like a dream.

    the reason we mention that cooler master hyper 212+ is its cheap, like i said earlier, only 30$USD( i realize sometimes 30 can be a lot if you are broke, but 30 is better than 60)
    it also has pretty much universal compatibility. i think i saw above your CPU it said AM2. this is your socket type. The 212+ fits all modern AMD sockets.
    With that clip being broke, you will not be able to properly attach your heat sink, and i strongly suggest NOT using your machine till its fixed.
  10. I did buy the hyper 212, unfortunately the standoffs are too large for my thread size on my mobo, so I guess it's off to the hw shops tomorrow AM to try again. like you said no use rushing back into it although I hate not using my pc. I was going to get the frio but I don't overclock so no reason to go overboard.

    Thanks to everyone for the help. Once I got the paste off the chip I could see it's an AMD phenom ii x4 995 so it's good to know for future reference! I think I managed to get quite lucky on this one, not much to fix it, no damage and it's been fun to learn about it all although I still have a lot to discover. going to start monitoring temps and see what I get.

    I took out my retaining bracket and that was the issue, bottom latch was snapped off, who knows how long it was like that, may have snapped off months ago when it was in transit at sea from the US for 3 months!
  11. 3 months!! lets hope you arent without a PC for that long this time!
  12. It was horrible. I had to use my PS3 flash for me!
  13. I think I have the symptoms of a dead CPU now... Plugged back in after my new heatsink install and all my fans are spinning but no signs of life. No beeps or anything from speakers or monitor to make me think my OS is up. No bios screen or anything on monitor. Disheartening for sure.
  14. I plugged everything back in where it was before so graphics card is ok I think.

    I do have lights for my graphics card and then just one green LED for SB_PWR on the MoBo. The thing that makes me think it's the CPU is that once I power on I cannot force shut down by holding my front panel power button anymore.

    I noticed some residual thermal paste on 2 pins of the CPU and the CPU socket on the MB isn't the cleanest. Obviously I will make sure it's clean/dry upon power up but I should be ok to use some solvent to clean up my pins right? Really hoping that
  15. it wont shut down even with you holding the button down? mine takes about 3 seconds of holding in order to force shutdown.

    does anything on the mobo look damaged? and of the caps or chokes etc banged up from the heatsink falling?
  16. Best answer selected by Cmwood25.
  17. you ever get your machine to fire back up? any luck trouble shooting the non start up issues?
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