Question Cleaning an AIO Cooler

Dec 21, 2020
49
1
35
0
Can I clean an aio cpu cooler without having to remove it? Can I just use compressed air to clean the fan and radiator? Does cleaning it regularly (once a year or more often) allow me to not have to do more intense cleaning which might include having to remove it?
 

Gam3r01

Titan
Moderator
You can, its going to take a bit more time but its possible.
Depending how you apply the compressed air large chunks could get stuck between the radiator and the case, so take care of that. Otherwise you would just be blowing the debris around the case, which you can then clean out afterwards.

If you keep up on it, you probably could get away with never removing it.
 

Gam3r01

Titan
Moderator
Marginally easier yes, simply because theres nothing to trap the debris as it leaves the heatsink.
Something to note if you dont plan to remove the fans, make sure you hold the fan blades in place when using air, its not great for the fans to spin when they are powered down.

Is there a reason you are against removing fans/radiators though? You dont have to remove them from the motherboard to just clean the fans and heatsink/rad.
 
Reactions: CountMike
Dec 21, 2020
49
1
35
0
Marginally easier yes, simply because theres nothing to trap the debris as it leaves the heatsink.
Something to note if you dont plan to remove the fans, make sure you hold the fan blades in place when using air, its not great for the fans to spin when they are powered down.

Is there a reason you are against removing fans/radiators though? You dont have to remove them from the motherboard to just clean the fans and heatsink/rad.
Would that require removing screws and reapplying thermal paste? I'm looking at buying a custom pre-built pc that requires as little maintanence as possible. I really don't want to be moving internal parts around.
 

Gam3r01

Titan
Moderator
Would that require removing screws and reapplying thermal paste? I'm looking at buying a custom pre-built pc that requires as little maintanence as possible. I really don't want to be moving internal parts around.
Most air coolers have fans that just clip onto the heatsink, no need to remove the whole cooler.
With an AIO cooler, you can unscrew the fans and radiator from the case, while leaving the waterblock still mounted. This way you can clean both sides of the radiator (just lean the radiator out of the case as far as the hoses allow) then simply put it back into place.
 

carocuore

Proper
Jan 24, 2021
197
57
170
2
Are Fan-cooled cpus much easier to clean? With or without compressed air? And without needing to remove the fan?
Somewhat, my aircooler is a legitimate PITA to clean, not because it's bad but because it takes at least 10 attemps to keep the fan clips in place. It's a Dark Rock Pro 4 in case you're wondering, decent cooler but the way the fans have to be mounted is absolute bs, an AIO is way easier to clean for me.
 
Dec 30, 2020
52
7
35
0
You can, its going to take a bit more time but its possible.
Depending how you apply the compressed air large chunks could get stuck between the radiator and the case, so take care of that. Otherwise you would just be blowing the debris around the case, which you can then clean out afterwards.

If you keep up on it, you probably could get away with never removing it.
Not a bad tactic at all. Certainly will help gathering the debris if anything. Still, keeping on it is key.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY