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How Liquid Cooling Works


How Liquid Cooling Works

How Liquid Cooling Works
Overclocked CPUs produce extra heat, overheated systems leads to hard disk crashes, RAM and CPU failures, and general system damage a system beyond repair. Overclocked systems and systems with extra add-ons  often need a more power this will produce extreme levels of heat. In most cases additional case fans and a larger CPU heatsink composed of higher-grade materials with a more powerful fan will do the trick.

Because high temperatures can significantly reduce life span or cause permanent damage to components, and the heat output of components can sometimes exceed the computer's cooling capacity, manufacturers often take additional precautions to ensure that temperatures remain within safe limits. A computer with thermal sensors integrated in the CPU, motherboard, chipset, or GPU can shut itself down when high temperatures are detected to prevent permanent damage, although this may not completely guarantee long-term safe operation.

One of the more extreme methods for cooling a PC is to use some form of liquid cooling. Liquid is denser than air and therefore offers greater thermal transference.

Several forms of liquid cooling are available, including the following:

  • Heat pipes
  • Water cooling
  • Refrigeration

Each of these uses a liquid or vapor to absorb the heat of the processor or other components and take that heat to a heat exchanger where it must eventually be dispersed to the air. All liquid cooling involves air cooling as well; it just removes the exchange of heat to the air to a remote place. Also, the radiator which is the heat exchanger used can be much larger than what would fit directly on the processor or other chips, which is another reason liquid cooling offers much greater cooling capacity.

Of all the types of liquid cooling available, heat pipes are the only type that is practical and cost-effective in production-level PCs. Water cooling and especially refrigeration are limited to those who are pursuing extreme overclocking and are willing to pay the high prices and put up with all the drawbacks and disadvantages that come with these two options.

One must ensure that fittings and the entire assembly are free from error. Poorly implemented liquid cooling system is likely to result in leaks. There should also be some form of contingency in terms of a leak. Even a single drop of liquid can ruin an electronic component. Note that water or liquid coolant can accelerate the corrosion of metal parts and damage electronic components. Pressure inside tubes can also build up due to too much heat absorbed by the liquid resulting in leaks.

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