Question Liquid Cooling Temps

Feb 14, 2021
Hi All,

Here’s my liquid cooling system


MOTHERBOARD - MSI MEG Z490 Unify (Socket LGA 1200) DDR4 ATX Motherboard
CPU - Intel Core i9-10900K Avengers Edition 3.7GHz (Comet Lake) Socket LGA1200 Processo
RAM - Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro 32GB (2x16GB) DDR4 PC4-24000C15 3000MHz Dual Channel Kit
GFX CARD - Gigabyte GeForce RTX 3080 10GB GDDR6X AORUS MASTER Ampere Graphics Card
STORAGE - Seagate FireCuda 520 2TB M.2 PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD
PSU - Corsair 850 Watt RM850x 80+ Gold Fully Modular ATX Power Supply/PSU
EK Water Blocks EK-Velocity CPU Water Block - Nickel + Plexi
RADIATOR - Black Ice Nemesis Radiator GTS 360
PUMP/RES - Raijintek ACHERON 360 D5 EVO RBW Distro-Plate
FANS BOTTOM - 3X EK Water Blocks EK-Vardar X3M 120mm (500-2200 rpm) Fans, mounted on rad blowing out
Lian Li UNI FAN SL120 3-pack, blowing out
14mm PETG Hard Tube

XSPC EC6 Coolant
Thermal Grizzly Kryonaut Thermal Paste

I think I've listed everything, just wondering what system temps roughly I should be seeing, I've had one set of fans taking air in and other set blowing out, now I have all blowing out as its made no difference to temps, it's not the best case for cooling,
My pc doesn't shut off or anything when gaming, I can feel heat on the glass, the display on the motherboard is between 70-80, however I will do a test properly and report back, also the GFX CARD isn't liquid cooled.

Thanks in advance.
Feb 14, 2021
Thanks for the reply MeanMachine41, using spec you idle shows between 35-45, gaming pushes it to 75-80ish both temps fluctuate, but by the looks it seems fine, the glass on the case just feel very warm.
I might get a better case at a later date.
Ideally you want to be pulling air from outside the case through the rad, first. Then the other fans should be helping move that air out.
In my own case I have three intake on the front mesh, two of which are the rad, the third blows cool air to the GPU. I have one exhaust fan on the back like "normal" and two on the top.

On idle I am commonly between 24-32 according to the time of year and almost never reach 70 during gaming. (2700X)
Reactions: CountMike
Feb 14, 2021
Hi punkncat, I originally had it that way the 3 vadar fans on rad at bottom pulling air in, the gfx fans are pointing though and the 3 lian fans blowing out the top but it didn't have bearing on the temps, the room is generally a warm room as it's only about 6m x 6m, window is always open in the room. There is no other place to have fans on this case.
Reactions: punkncat
^ Yeah, just took a look at that case. The design is neat but I can imagine it being a hotbox with those components.
I cannot imagine that PC helping the heat issue in the room (unless it's winter). Good thing is that based on what you are saying you still have thermal overhead for the components if not your own comfort.


In general, it is better to have about half your fans pulling air into the case, and the other half exhausting it out. The most important thing is as much FLOW of air THROUGH the case.

There is a factor may people do not understand about case and CPU chip cooling. Your system has two sets of automatic fan control systems. One controls cooling of the CPU chip, and the other cools all the rest of the case. Each of them controls the speed of their fans, and hence the rate of air flow over their hot parts, and hence the temperatures of those parts. HOW each system operates is important. Each has a temperature sensor (one inside the CPU chip, one on the mobo). Each has a target temperature it should try to keep at its sensor. I does that by changing the fan speeds as the temperatures shift with changes in workload. So in each case, the result is the the actual temperature measured is kept as close as possible to its target. That is, if temp rises the fan speeds up until the temp start to drop again, and so on. So, under normal operation with adequate fans and air flow capability, the actual temperatures do NOT change much, but the fan speeds change. If you do something to change air flow capability, like altering fan placement of flow direction, or adding more fans, the main result will be changes of fan SPEED, not a big change in actual temperatures. The only time such a re-design of fan layout makes a big temperature change is if the layout was NOT adequate in the first place, and you really needed much more air flow CAPABILITY to allow the automatic system to do its job properly.
Feb 14, 2021
@Paperdoc, as stated I originally had the bottom fans on the rad pushing air through, so fans under the rad and the 3 fans on top pushing out, the gfx card fans are facing down so it I changed all fans to pushing out, whichever way I have them, it's had no change in temps in this case, the only other place for a single fan is the rear, but as the front, side panels are glass, I can't see it doing anything.
I think I need to look for another case in all honesty as I don't think anything short of keeping it in the freezer will help.
, lol.


Contributing Writer
Freezer/refrigerator is a bad idea, even if it is a joke - it wouldn't work as well as you might think because these devices are meant to remove heat once, and then maintain cold temps, not constantly remove large volumes of thermal load introduced by a PC. Compressor can't keep up, it would fail.

Have you removed the side panel of the case and focused air from a fan into the case to see if this impacts temps? Before we go too far down the rabbit hole, we'd want to check if this makes a difference, or provides any help at all.


Cooler Troubleshooting and Questions

High CPU and GPU temperatures:

This could be caused by a few different things, please don't automatically assume 'the cooler is not working' without also checking if the case airflow is sufficient.

Remove the side panel of the PC case. Orient a house fan (desk or box style fan) to blow air into the case, directly over components at the highest setting.

This will represent a case with the best possible airflow possible. For reference, the fans I am providing as examples would look like the items below (just to clarify for anyone who might want reference)

Re-test as you have normally done - play games, run benchmarks, etc. to get to where temperatures were normally seen to be higher than they should. Normal room temperature is usually between 20-24C or 68-75F. Please note that every air or liquid cooler operates as a product of delta-T over ambient, meaning that if the PC is operational (simply turned on), it is impossible for the CPU to display a temperature below ambient room temperatures. If it is, this is likely a bug in software temperature reporting either from the desktop UI or the BIOS reading it incorrectly.

With the fan running at full speed, if temperatures drop by 5-7C or more, case airflow is one major issue to contend with. You will need additional fans or better fans for your setup in order to optimize air in and out of the chassis. This might even require consideration for a new PC case or leaving the side panel partially open during sessions of heavier computing until these items are corrected.

If your temperatures remain relatively the same (difference less than 1-2C), then you likely have an issue with the cooler in question (if CPU is hot, CPU cooler, if GPU is hot, GPU cooler). It would be good to then approach the next steps by thoroughly cleaning the cooler with compressed or canned air and ensuring there are not large blockages in cooling fins or on fans, etc. This might require the cooling fans to be removed from the heatsink or radiator to ensure there is not a buildup of pet hair, dust or even carpet fibers which can trap additional debris. Please ensure the PC is turned off and unplugged during this process to prevent unwanted startup to keep fingers safe from fan blades or accidental shorting if you happen to drop a screw onto other components during fan removal.

Removal of the cooler and re-application of thermal paste & re-seating the cooler can also be beneficial once cleaning of the cooler is ruled out by retesting the steps above.