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Residue in GPU Blocks after only 2 months


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Hi Everyone,

Have a mostly Corsair loop (XH305i Kit), to which I have added 2 more rads (EK P360 and alphacool 120), along with an EK Vector GPU block and active backplate for my Strix 3090.

I've been running the setup since January, and noticed almost immediately there was particulate floating in the reservoir and accumulating on the GPU block. 2 Months ago, I purchased the active backplate and decided to do a thorough cleaning assuming I had not properly cleaned out the rads during initial install.

Did a 24 hour soak (vinegar solution followed by backing soda flush with distilled water) of the rads, took apart the GPU block and scrubbed it clean, as well as the CPU block, all tubes, fittngs etc.

Flushed with distilled water then filled with Corsair XL5 coolant and went back to gaming. Water temps fluctuate between 35 to 45 degrees based on ambient temp and how many watts I'm pushing the 3090.

Now 2 months later and I'm back to all this residue in the coolant and collecting on in the GPU block. 

Everything from a metal perspective is either brass, copper or nickel (block plating).

Anyone have a thought as to what is causing this?

Thanks.

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It looks like really old thermal paste! No idea what it could be but I'm going to follow this thread in hopes someone can help.

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Yeah, not the typical sludge, but 99% of the time this stuff comes from the radiator.  How quickly did you see it after installing the new rads?  I saw you did a thorough cleaning already, but having been through this once or twice, it is an infuriating process and if there is left over manufacturing debris in the radiator, it can be extremely difficult to get it all out.  

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i personally never saw that kind of gunk. looks like scale so that's really weird.

When i see scaly stuff depositing on hot surfaces only, i think acid compounds, so, maybe flux residue? Next time you clean the loop it may be interesting to have a look inside the radiator ports, see if one looks dirtier than the other. on the inside

I have used quite a few EK and Alphacool rads but never got more than light dust from them, as with any other brand.

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I’m also thinking it’s coming from the Corsair 360mm radiator. Have ordered the Mayhems Blitz kit and hope that will remove the gunk for good. 

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well Corsair rads are made by hardware labs, and they are... fairly high end. got two HW labs on my rig, they are just as clean. It feels like a one off fluke somewhere.. 

Have you tried another coolant maybe?

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Yah maybe, still has me frustrated that I have to tear it all down and clean (again). I've purchased an EK 360 rad as a replacement because I would not be able to live with myself if I keep the Corsair and only have this sludge continue to occur.

Now just need to find the time to clean with Blitz 1 and 2.

No more Corsair rads for me unfortunately.

Thanks for the feedback.

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So I Blitz'd the new EK rad, and the Corsair one for good measure. Then did a 24 hour Blitz 2 of the rest of the system and the GPU blocks are better, still some residue but a lot was cleaned up.

Put the EK rad in, leaving the Corsair out and also changed the coolant from Corsair to distilled water (plus biocide, anti oxidation additive). 

So far, everything is staying clean and the residue has not come back. Interestingly enough, the Blitz of the Corsair rad didn't expell much of anything, which leads me to believe I had already cleaned it well. 

Leaving the Corsair coolant as the only other possible culprit. Maybe a bad batch?

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  • 1 month later...
  • 4 weeks later...

I had done a pretty thorough cleaning of all the rads (left overnight, rinsed afterwards with distilled blah blah etc), as well as rinsing out the blocks.

In my case I'm pretty convinced it was the Corsair coolant. Since tossing it out, in favour of a biocide / anti corrosion additive to distilled water, everything has been perfect. No buildup, nothing.

I may have gotten a bad batch, but regardless plan to stay away from Corsair coolant.

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