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Heatsink/Thermal Paste Causing Crash


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#1 phoenixcrash

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 03:41 PM

I posted a topic a while back about a problem with my computer crashing which has since been removed due to inactivity. Problem was that the PC was crashing randomly, not just when the cpu was under a heavy load. It happened most often when I was in the middle of, say, converting an avi file to DVD format. But it sometimes occurs right after I start booting up. I have FOUND the problem, I just need some advice on how to fix it. When it gets so bad that it can't boot, I pull the side panel off, remove the heatsink and fan, use 92% isopropyl to clean the cpu and bottom of the heatsink, put a pea-size drop of thermal compound (the $3 silicone crap from RadioShack), and then put everything back together. This fix lasts for about a week and then I have to pull it all back apart and repeat the process. I should also mention that when screwing the heatsink down, 3 of the 4 screws go in fine but one just spins and never tightens. I suspect that the problem lies in the cheap thermal paste and the last screw not being properly tightened. I've never removed the mobo before but I understand there are some sort of screw spacers between the mobo and the metal chassis. I did take the heatsink out one time while the tower was sitting upright, and I'm almost positive that I heard some small piece fall when I pulled it out. Bought a new heatsink, but it had the plastic twist-tabs and I couldn't fit the plastic pins through the screw holes, so I sold it. I assume that I would need to remove the mobo to install one without screws. But, like I said, the issue lies in the quality of the thermal paste and ONE untightened screw... The PC in question is a HP m1070n Media Center. Here is a link to the specs so you don't have to look: Hp m1070n Specs
What paste should I use, and any suggestions about fixing the screw prob on the heatsink? Thanks in advance for your help.

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#2 phoenixcrash

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 03:55 PM

BTW, before anyone suggests that the screw in question is stripped, or at some way in fault, I should mention that I have examined the screw (no visual signs of damage) and have rotated the heatsink (screws in fine in the other 3 holes).

#3 MrBruce1959

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 04:15 PM

Hello and welcome to Bleepingcomputer.

I'll be posting an image shortly and need to ask you a question.

Bruce.

Edited by MrBruce1959, 09 October 2010 - 06:06 PM.

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#4 MrBruce1959

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 06:03 PM

Here is the support pages for your computer.

http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/product...p;submit=Go%20

Here is another link.

http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/documen...;product=426501


Is this the screw you are refering too?

Attached File  c00590000.jpeg   24.01KB   11 downloads



Bruce.

Edited by MrBruce1959, 09 October 2010 - 06:23 PM.

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#5 the_patriot11

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 06:33 PM

I would suspect the loose screw, more then the thermal paste, if the heatsink does not have a solid even contact with the CPU DIE, or if it shakes loose, it can cause the CPU to heat up extremely fast and cause the thermal controls to shutdown the computer and/or freeze. The other issue is I think your using a little to much thermal paste, it should only be about a rice grain size amount. I would recomend some OCZ freeze or Arctic silver 5 as good thermal paste, but I suspect your biggest problem is that loose screw.

picard5.jpg

 

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#6 DaChew

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 06:57 PM

BTW, before anyone suggests that the screw in question is stripped, or at some way in fault, I should mention that I have examined the screw (no visual signs of damage) and have rotated the heatsink (screws in fine in the other 3 holes).


Whatever it screws into is stripped, I have added a small sliver of wood or even very fine copper wire into the interface betwwen screw and hole. Do not overtighten,
Chewy

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#7 phoenixcrash

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 06:14 PM

@ MrBruce; yes, that's the screw I'm referring to. Not sure if it's in the EXACT same location as the one in the picture, as I don't have the computer in front of me, but yea that's the one. If the tower was lying on it's side in front of me, it would be the lower left screw. @ the_patriot09; this $3 silicone compound is crap, wouldn't give it to someone is dire need of thermal paste. I think I'll just go ahead and pick up some AS5. Question is, would I need to use a little more of the Arctic Silver? I know that it doesn't spread quite as easily as, say, silicone.

Edited by phoenixcrash, 11 October 2010 - 06:23 PM.


#8 the_patriot11

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 10:12 PM

pea sized, even with the cheap stuff, is way to much-I use AS5 myself, just put enough on as a small grain of rice, it just needs to leave a extremely thin but equal, in fact it doesnt hurt to start with to little, and if it doesnt cover it equally to add a little more. To much Thermal paste can cause just as many problems as none at all, thin, and even-you shouldnt be able to see the die, but it shouldnt be very thick either.

picard5.jpg

 

Primary system: Motherboard: ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3, Processor: AMD Phenom II x4 945, Memory: 16 gigs of Patriot G2 DDR3 1600, Video: AMD Sapphire Nitro R9 380, Storage: 1 WD 500 gig HD, 1 Hitachi 500 gig HD, and Power supply: Coolermaster 750 watt, OS: Windows 10 64 bit. 

Media Center: Motherboard: Gigabyte mp61p-S3, Processor: AMD Athlon 64 x2 6000+, Memory: 6 gigs Patriot DDR2 800, Video: Gigabyte GeForce GT730, Storage: 500 gig Hitachi, PSU: Seasonic M1211 620W full modular, OS: Windows 10.

If I don't reply within 24 hours of your reply, feel free to send me a pm.


#9 phoenixcrash

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 12:11 PM

I appreciate the advice Patriot. Now, anybody got suggestions on what to do about the "screw that never stops turning"? DaChew suggested this: "Whatever it screws into is stripped, I have added a small sliver of wood or even very fine copper wire into the interface betwwen screw and hole." Are we talking about wrapping a small gauge copper wire around the top of the screw's threads? I would really prefer to fix the problem instead of patching it up.

Edited by phoenixcrash, 12 October 2010 - 12:12 PM.


#10 DaChew

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 01:14 PM

The correct procedure for a stripped female thread is to drill and tap and substitute a larger threaded screw or
drill and fit an insert which fits the original screw

Neither is practical in your case

By pulling the mobo, if that's what the stripped fitting is in, then other options might be available.
Chewy

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#11 Joe C

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 01:49 PM

might be easier just to cough up $9. and buy a new mount
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16835117024

#12 phoenixcrash

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Posted 12 October 2010 - 04:52 PM

might be easier just to cough up $9. and buy a new mount
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16835117024

I don't think that's gonna help in my situation, but thanks for the help.

#13 Joe C

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Posted 13 October 2010 - 08:37 PM

I don't think that's gonna help in my situation, but thanks for the help.

You need a new back plate because you say one of the threads on your existing one is stripped?
And yes, this fix requires for you to remove the mother board. If you do not feel confident about removing your board, then you should take it to someone that will replace the back plate for you

#14 MrBruce1959

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Posted 14 October 2010 - 01:50 AM

Referring back to the beginning of this thread, I know you said you heard something drop from behind the motherboard, my question is what happened to the item that dropped?

I am concerned that if it is made of metal, this may eventually get caught up on a circuit of the motherboard and can eventually cause a short.

Did you ever recover this piece?

Also, when you do remove the motherboard and have access to the under-side, you may end up finding this piece you spoke of.

It may in fact be the part that the screw once screwed into, if it is nylon, then there is no worries about shorts happening, but if it is made of a metallic substance you may be looking for trouble if this part makes its way into any circuitry that it could short out in the future.

Bruce.

Edited by MrBruce1959, 14 October 2010 - 01:51 AM.

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#15 phoenixcrash

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Posted 14 October 2010 - 06:10 PM

@ MrBruce; the piece I heard fall behind the mobo didn't quite make a clanky metallic sound, so I'm pretty sure that it's a nylon/plastic piece. Which is why I'm not very concerned about any circuit coming into contact with the piece. I know I'll be able to recover the piece when I finally get around to removing the mobo, but any suggestions on what I could do to rig it in the mean time.




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