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Cleaning out and flushing a Swiftech AIO - this right?

Lysrin

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I am coming up on the 3 year mark for my Swiftech AIO. The docs recommend flushing, cleaning, and replacing the fluid at this point. Having never done that before, just wondering if there is anything specific I should do.

Is it as simple as

- dust out the rad;
- take the main pieces apart, drain, rinse with distilled water;
- fill with distilled water as new coolant fluid;
- clean the CPU block; and then
- reinstall with new thermal paste?
 

JD

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I would probably do boiling hot water at the very least for your flushing. Though you'll need oven gloves to hold the rad and give it a good shake.

The block should hopefully come apart so you can scrub the baseplate with a toothbrush. Not sure if this is one of the ones with the pump built into the block? If so, then it might be more challenging.

Chances are they were using a glycol based solution inside, so you'll likely want some additive other than just distilled water. If you don't need any colours, either of these would work:
https://www.dazmode.com/store/shop/watercooling/ek-cryofuel-clear-concentrate-100-ml/
https://www.dazmode.com/store/shop/watercooling/dazmode-protector/
 

Lysrin

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Thanks JD! It's an H240-X so the pump is up with the rad, not in the block.

I found this on their site, https://www.swiftech.com/FAQs.aspx. Certainly an involved process. Points there for the air coolers I guess maintenance-wise! ;)

They talk about using their own HydrX coolant, but that looks like it would have to come from the US. DazMode is in Canada it looks like so that's an easier option.

Performance-wise would the cooling be the same between a coolant vs distilled water+additive?
 

rjbarker

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Cooling will be the same...but using a coolant will help prevent algea growth...slime and other foreign cfrap growing in there.....when I flushed my 480...360...and 240 rads I use CLR diluted with hot water...rinse about 3x..then rinse again 3 or 4 times with distilled water....then stand em up to drain / dry....not sure about a pump / rad combo though...
I also vacuum out the rads....but with good rad filters there int much dust in there...


...btw the EK Clear Cryo is what I use...1 bottle is good for 1 L total of coolant.....you wont need much I wouldnt think....my loop takes just about 2 Liters of fluid :doh:
 

JD

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Their HydrX is similar to the EK CryoFuel or Dazmode Protector, basically just antifreeze I'd guess.

I would say replace the tubing as well if you don't mind spending a bit, usually that can get gunky too.

First time I've read about using Pine-Sol to clean a loop though, that's interesting. Maybe I'll give it a go next time, will give it a nice scent at least :haha: My loop is going onto year 2 now...
 

rjbarker

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Their HydrX is similar to the EK CryoFuel or Dazmode Protector, basically just antifreeze I'd guess.

I would say replace the tubing as well if you don't mind spending a bit, usually that can get gunky too.

First time I've read about using Pine-Sol to clean a loop though, that's interesting. Maybe I'll give it a go next time, will give it a nice scent at least :haha: My loop is going onto year 2 now...

The longest I went without flushing n cleaning was 30 months....:whistle:.....I actually had "mushroom / anemone (sp)" looking things growing in my Rez....BUT my temps were fine :thumb: .......I finally broke down n ripped it apart when suddenly one day 1 GPU shot from 42c under load to 68c...playing Witcher 3....ended up replacing the 780Ti's then anyhow.....found a fair bit of gunk under the jet plates in the GPU Blocks .............


....havent heard of pinesol......my wife would probably love it :thumb: .....yes for sure...as JD suggested change tubing while your at it...clean out the pump and CPU Block really good as well!!!!
 

JD

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....havent heard of pinesol......my wife would probably love it :thumb: .....yes for sure...as JD suggested change tubing while your at it...clean out the pump and CPU Block really good as well!!!!
Yeah, and Swiftech says to run your loop with it for 3hr+... that would likely clean up the blocks/pump/res as well, or at least help reduce the scrubbing needed :thumb:

I've just been topping my loop with distilled, but it smells pretty bad. No signs of growth though, I think it's just the pastel dye breaking down...it didn't smell great to begin with though. The red has definitely lost some of its vibrancy though.

Flipped through my pics, April 2017 was when I filled my loop :whistle:
 

rjbarker

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Yeah, and Swiftech says to run your loop with it for 3hr+... that would likely clean up the blocks/pump/res as well, or at least help reduce the scrubbing needed :thumb:

I've just been topping my loop with distilled, but it smells pretty bad. No signs of growth though, I think it's just the pastel dye breaking down...it didn't smell great to begin with though. The red has definitely lost some of its vibrancy though.

Flipped through my pics, April 2017 was when I filled my loop :whistle:

Its funny when I first started WC'ing I was soooo paranoid with introducing contaminants and worried about leaks ....etc etc...wow has my mind set changed...(once I saw mushrooms growing in my Rez)
....now I soak the ends of the tubing in extremely hot water (regular tap water out of the kettle) to slip them onto the barb ends of the fittings easier....a little spit on the compression fitting to tighten em up easier....what?! Cant find distilled water anywhere...ah mix the EK Concentrate in with some bottled spring water...no problem....what? the terminal block didnt seal right and its raining water in my case....ah dry it out for a day or 2...no biggie......air bubbles..crank the pump and shake n twist the case into every position imagineable..even lay it on its side....

...so this round I did use Spring Water with my EK Cryo Concentrate....:shok:

...love the pine sol...wonder if it would be better than CLR :doh:

Anyow all good....I change out the liquid next year ? :whistle:



apologies to the OP for getting the Thread off topic :thumb:
 

Lysrin

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apologies to the OP for getting the Thread off topic :thumb:
None necessary! This is interesting stuff :thumb:

I hadn't thought about replacing the tubing. Would you guys still recommend that if I run everything for hours+ as the Swiftech FAQ mentions?

I'm not a custom loop guy as you know, just the AIO, but I do want to take proper care of it. I had thought I might add GPU to this setup but I haven't gone there at this point.

What do people with non-expandable AIOs do? Can those even be opened to clean or are they just throw away after so many years?
 

JD

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The "AIO" you have though is really just a custom loop, as they even sold that rad/res/pump setup separately (probably still do).

Since Swiftech says to run Pine Sol through the loop with the pump running, that should help clean everything up. I'd still rinse with hot water a few times after to get out any particles that were loosened up. If you can manage it, have the bottom most hose/barb over a bucket, have a jug of hot water to pour into the res and fire up the pump and keep feeding it water. That should flush out most of it. You could stop there or you could go and tear things apart to rinse again. It looks like it came with neoprene tubing which holds up better than the clear/coloured stuff, so you'll likely be fine.

I actually have a 3/8" barb that fits on my garden hose, so usually I hook that up to the loop (res/pump excluded) and run tap water through everything to flush it out. Now that I'm using hard tubing though, not quite sure what I'll do...might hook up the hose to my reservoir and then trickle the water in while the pump is running...

I remember a guy from way back that actually ran his loop connected directly to the cold water tap. Huge waste of water, but that was back in the days when people didn't pay for water (I'm sure some still don't). I can't remember if he wrapped his tubes though for the condensation or not.
 

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