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Insulating the outside of a water block was never something I had though of doing. I soon found out just how important it was after some water sweated off my CPU water block and fried my 9500pro. After making my waterchiller I saw some condensation forming on the outside of my water block but didn't think too much of it. That was when I had first made my chiller and it was not running at it's full potential. After some tweaking you can see why it was imperative that all my water blocks be fully insulated


So this is my guide to insulating a water block.the outside that is.

Materials
1. Neoprene
2. Silicone
3. Hair dryer

The actual process of doing this is very simple.

I will use pictures from the installation of my MCW 50-T water block for examples.

Steps
1. Coat the entire outside of the water block with a layer of silicone and make sure there is NO exposed metal. Then take the hair dryer and blow it over the silicone for a few minutes until it slightly changes colour and becomes solid.


Make sure you get the sides like shown here


2. Add a second layer of silicone over that layer, but do not take a hair dryer to it yet
3. Cut out pieces of neoprene to cover the outside area of the block. When I insulated my MCW5000-PT I used 6 separate pieces of neoprene
-2 for the sides of the block
-4 for the top
MCW 5000 PT with all the neoprene on top and sides.


4. Once you have them cut place them on the freshly applied silicone and hold them on until they stick.
5. Once again take the hair dryer and heat up the silicone until it cures.
6. Now you need to go nut's with the silicone. You want to have at least 0.5cm of silicone covering any parts of the water block that don't have neoprene on them. If you don't have enough silicone the cold will get to the outside and cause sweat to form on the silicone which defeats the purpose of the insulation.

Finished product.........nobody said it would be pretty


7. Now check to make sure all the spaces between the neoprene pieves are sealed up and then break out the hair dryer again.

You will also need to put a gasket around the base of the water block and insulate your cpu socket.

You can follow this guide to insulating your socket Here

Once everything has cured hook the block to your cooling system and run the cold water through it for a few hours. If no water shows up on the outside you've done a good job.

You will also need to insulate all your tubing as it will also sweat. The simplest way go about this is to go to home depot and buy some self sealing pipe insulation. It's about $1 for 6' of the stuff and it lasts forever.

All you do is put in over your tubing making sure it covers your entire tube all the way upto your water block barbs and then put one piece of tape (or zipties) at either end of the insulation and let the self adhesive do the rest.

A few pictures (sorry about the fan)


One thing I have learned from some others is that you do not want to make the pipe insulation to tight as this will cause you more problems with the pipes sweating.

Expand got feedback?

by Exit See Profile edited by FastEddie See Profile
last modified: 2004-02-07 12:46:56