Water Cooling Loops - AIO or Custom Loop ?

GWGeorge007
GWGeorge007
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Topic 228234

I am about to do some maintenance on my custom water cooling loop and change over from and XSPC water block to an Olympus water block.

I am curious though.....   How many of you run an AIO (All In One) cooler versus a Custom Loop?

If you run an AIO, how long do you run it before either servicing it or replacing it?

If you run a Custom Water Cooling Loop, are you using a colored mix coolant?  Or just distilled water

Or do you use distilled water with an additive for cooling loop protection such as PrimoChill Liquid Utopia?

And if you run a Custom Water Cooling Loop with distilled water, about how long do you run it before draining and flushing the system?

Thanks in advance for taking the time to answer these questions.

:>)

George

Proud member of the Old Farts Association

Ian&Steve C.
Ian&Steve C.
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Distilled + treatment only.

Distilled + treatment only. recently I'm using a treatment called "Liquid Utopia" made by Primochill. run for over a year without maintenance (just top off). but I broke this system down recently and converted it to air cooled for a different project.

never use any colored coolant unless you want to be cleaning it out every few months and having it gunk up your loop.

the only pre-made coolant I've used is high quality clear coolant Koolance 702 clear. this is made to last years, and my loop that's using it truly has been running it for like 3 years without a drain/clear. only topping it up when it got low. blocks look brand new inside. but it's quite a bit more expensive.

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Keith Myers
Keith Myers
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I'm assuming brain-fart or

I'm assuming brain-fart or typo about the "Olympus" cpu block.  Sure you meant Optimus.

I've only ever used distilled water + Primochill Liquid Utopia.

The only maintenance I've done on my custom loop systems is occassionally taking the block apart to dunk the coldplate into the ultrasonic cleaner with a mix of cola and white vinegar solution to clean the microfins.

But only have done that once in each system to clean up the plasiticizer deposits on the areas under the jetplate port from my beginning sojourn into custom loop cooling when I was using the original PVC tubing which leached the plasticizers into the system. Now use nothing but PrimoChill PrimoFlex Advanced LRT tubing which stay clear and don't leach plasticizers.

The coldplates are still clear of debris and the only change is the discoloration of the copper when exposed to air.  None are completely shiny as when they were first delivered.  Now most are tending towards in circulation copper penny coloration.

I've never completely drained the systems.  Only what was necessary for a upgrade event.  Just needed to top off the reservoirs an inch or so low after 6 months.

 

GWGeorge007
GWGeorge007
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Ooops!!  pffft!  Sorry, it

Ooops!!  pffft!  Sorry, it was a brain-fart.  I did mean Optimus.   ;>)

Good!  Good!!  I'm glad to hear that your coldplates are NOT collecting any debris (leached plasticizers).

I am also using the PrimoChill PrimoFlex Advanced LRT tubing with just distilled water + Primochill Liquid Utopia.  It does appear to be still clear, though I do have a bit of discoloration in all of my tubing.  They have begun to turn a very slight yellowish color.  At first, I don't notice it.  But the longer I look at it, the more I do notice the color change.

I don't think that you mentioned how long you run your water cooling custom loop before doing a complete system flush.  Mine has been 2 years, and I would leave it go longer if I weren't changing my CPU waterblock to an Optimus.

George

Proud member of the Old Farts Association

Ian&Steve C.
Ian&Steve C.
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I would recommend EK ZMT

I would recommend EK ZMT tubing. It’s just EPDM and won’t leach anything into the loop from the plastic tubes. It also resists fluid loss better than other more conventional tubing. Plus I think the matte black finish just looks cooler than clear lines lol. 

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Keith Myers
Keith Myers
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I wouldn't mind using EK ZMT

I wouldn't mind using EK ZMT tubing except for its absurd price and that it isn't offered in the size I need for my $hundreds of existing fittings I see no need to wholesale replace just to use their EPDM tubing.

You can get the same stuff as EPDM rubber from McMaster-Carr or Grainger for 1/3 the price of EK's stuff.

Plus one benefit of clear tubing that you won't get from opaque is that you can see the air bubbles in the system move through when you are purging the air from the system after you open it up for maintenance or upgrades.

 

Ian&Steve C.
Ian&Steve C.
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You’re right that EPDM is

You’re right that EPDM is EPDM, but last time I looked I couldn’t find the generic stuff in sizes suitable for standard water cooling fittings other than from EK. Maybe it’s changed. 
 

personally not being able to see air bubbles has never been an issue for me. Small bubbles will work their way out eventually. 

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Keith Myers
Keith Myers
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EPDM  tubing trade name is

EPDM  tubing trade name is known as Norprene or Tygon or A-60-G ASTM classification.  Available at McMaster-Carr in lots of ID's and OD's suitable for just about every compression fitting used in custom water cooling.

https://www.mcmaster.com/norprene-tubing/

When I burp/purge the air trapped in the end tanks of the radiators I get huge bubbles moving through the system.  Certainly not small bubbles at first.  Only when I have moved the largest air pockets through to the reservoir do I see the small bubbles accumulate on the reservoir walls.

[Edit]

also at U.S. Plastic

https://www.usplastic.com/catalog/item.aspx?itemid=23485&catid=864

 

Ian&Steve C.
Ian&Steve C.
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But if temps are fine, do the

But if temps are fine, do the unseen bubbles even matter?  

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Keith Myers
Keith Myers
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Ian&Steve C. wrote: But if

Ian&Steve C. wrote:

But if temps are fine, do the unseen bubbles even matter?  

But if it the temps aren't fine . . . .  then you probably have a coolant flow issue where the trapped, entrained air pockets prevent proper flowrate or the internal radiator channels aren't wetting the walls properly for good heat transfer.  Or the air trapped in the return side of the water blocks prevents heat transfer through that section of the coldplate from the IHS.  Air is a poor conductor of heat as you know.

 

Ian&Steve C.
Ian&Steve C.
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I’m just saying I’ve never

I’m just saying I’ve never had that actually happen. Fill it up, run the pump. Tip it about a bit. Fill it up again. Run the pump again. Then fill it up and let it run for 24hrs or indefinitely and then just top it off. Has worked on every system for me. Even ones in a rack that I can’t tip around. The air always worked itself out. 

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