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Second attempt at pasting heatspreader to cpu

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GLE3

New Member
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Hi, hoping to get some help after my first attempt of mounting a lid on my CPU(Xeon X5687). The lid didn’t come off by design but I had some Artic Silver around the house so I tried to make it work. After applying paste to CPU and mounting the heatspeader I installed the chip pasted it to the heatsink and fired it up. Fan seemed to kick on more than normal and Core Temp confirmed my worries.. After a 45 minute gaming stint all 4 cores maxed out at about 90 degrees. Sounds a bit high.. So here’s what I think I might have done wrong in my thermal paste application..

1) I found it very challenging to remove all the old thermal paste from the CPU and heatspreader. I got the thicker stuff off with a credit card, but after working at it for 30 mins I only got down to a very thin film where I could see my scratch marks from my fingernail into the paste residue. Also, the inside top of the heatspreader had an orange/yellow rectangle where the paste previously sat (is that removable or is it part of the heatspreader). Assuming that wasn’t good enough. Ideas on how I can do better cleaning job or are there better tools for this?
2) I added one pea size blob of thermal past on the cpu and spread it around, but the lid didn’t even make contact with the paste. So I added a second glob of the same size, didn’t spread it around as much and noticed the heatspreader stuck this time. Should I have added more? I watched a guy do an i7 on youtube and he barely put any on.. There is a lot on thermal pasting on the internet, but most of it is pasting the cpu to the heatsink not chip to heatspreader.. Would be interested in any help I can get here…
3) Once I get the heat thing figured out, wondering if I can even overclock this thing. (in a HP Z400 workstation)

Thanks in advance!
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
So the IHS (integrated heat spreader) came off exposing the cpu die below? You applied as5 between the die and bottom of the ihs, then remounted the heatsink, correct?

One pea sized blob is plenty... of you need more than that. Something is wrong.

Also, pictures are worth a thousand words here.:)
 

Zerileous

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2002
you'll need to use alcohol to clean the paste residue, and ensure the internal of the IHS is completely clean as well. I'm guessing there is a problem as well with the old silicone sealant, but I don't want to get too far into things without pictures.
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Use plenty of alcohol, 90% if you can find it. It won't hurt the chip or the die. Just submerge the whole die into a container of alcohol and let it soak for a few hours if necessary. For good contact between the chip and the underside of the IHS you will need to remove all the old paste from the PCB and the IHS. You will still see a "stain" of the old paste outline on the PCB but that is okay.
 
OP
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GLE3

New Member
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
This is when the heat spreader originally separated from the chip. If it looks like the old paste is heavy on there, it's cause it is. Like cream cheese on a bagel. Please let me know what other pictures you need. Thanks!
 

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trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Yes, weren't the xeons soldered from the factory? I think it was only the 3rd through 8th generation "i" series Intels where they departed from using solder under the hood. They returned to it in the "i" series for the 9th generation.
 
OP
G

GLE3

New Member
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
Could be, didn't even know what Solder TIM was until I googled it... Kinda learning as I go. Saw I guy open a X5690 on youtube and it looks the same. He cleaned up the metal contact on the die and the outer edge that I will call a gasket that would be at the seat of the IHS. I didn't clean that 'gasket' on mine. Does anyone have a procedure for me on how to clean up and reapply? Can I do it with just thermal paste instead of solder?
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Yes, the "gasket" does need to be scraped away. This is likely most of your problem. It is creating space between the chip and the IHS.
 
OP
G

GLE3

New Member
Joined
Mar 12, 2020
So, do I remove the gasket around the underside of the ihs too? This would result in metal on on die contact.. is that ok?
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Okay, I'm not sure what this "gasket" is all about on this family of CPUs. On the i5s and i7s I have delidded, there was no real gasket, just some kind of epoxy glue used between the wall edges of the IHS and the PCB which we always removed. I expect it is the same with the xeon you are working with but if there is still solder on top of the chip, yes, it will make contact with the underside of the lid. What you need to do is remove the solder on top of the chip. How to do that, I'm not sure but it may require heat.

And unless you replace the solder with liquid metal TIM you will likely get worse temps than you started with before delidding. Ordinary paste TIM like AS5 will not conduct heat as well as the solder that Intel used in the first place.