Mineral oil

otacon6530

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May 21, 2009
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If I used mineral oil rather than distilled water in my water cooling system will that stop my computer from having a chance of getting fried? If it sprung a leak I mean,

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Thinking about submerging my entire computer in mineral oil from my next project. I have seen one online that used a fish tank. that would have to be better that sealing a regular case.
 
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Elledan

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If you use it in a tube system and waterblocks it'll be just as risky as water, cool worse, degrade many kinds of plastic and have a viscosity lower than water meaning that you will need custom waterblocks and everything.

You're better off putting emergency cooling fans on top of the waterblocks connected to temperature probes :)
 
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Using chicken grease would be a better idea.

Distilled water > dash of PT Nuke and antifreeze.......and no gunky dye!
 

Arcygenical

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Submerging your system is a different story... But running oil in your lines is nearly impossible - and highly impractical.

Neither are really good solutions though - not yet at least.
 

0m3g4

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wow, I mean I know we all gotta learn... but imagine the pump to move the oil through at an adequate spped... you would need one of the a/c powered pumps for sure, like a pond pump.
 

Igneos79

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A guy submerged his whole system into kitchen oil. It works like a charm. Google it!
 

Elledan

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Submerged systems look cool and all, but mineral oil sucks at cooling when compared to water. (http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/specific-heat-fluids-d_151.html)

Have you looked into Feser non-conductive fluid? (http://www.frozencpu.com/cat/l3/g30...t_-_Brand-Feser_Fluids-Page1.html?id=7rCtZqkP)

Using mineral oil for cooling is more of a 'cool' thing than really practical. Big transformers are oil-cooled because it's the only practical way to cool such a big piece of metal. For parts with plastic components (like capacitors) it's also quite dangerous, as the oil will dissolve most kinds of plastics.

Using other types of coolant isn't guaranteed to not interact either, plus they're generally quite expensive. In the end using pure water is the cheapest, most efficient way to cool a system. If one could keep the thing sealed, submerging would be possible too :)
 

thaltek

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i have seen mineral oil done before where a regular aircooled system was submerged..... it was cool but it was obvious the fans where not designed to handle the higher viscosity of mineral oil....... in short its cool but i wouldn't bother especially when its cheaper to buy a "back to school" minifridge and have your water cycle through that.....
 

hotbrass

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Actually, distilled water does not conduct when it is clean. If it leaks out when you are leak testing (the most likely time) it should be clean and non-conductive. If you do get leaks, just put your mobo/components in some 91% isopropyl alcohol. It'll displace the water and evaporate leaving things nice and clean in relatively short order. When leak testing just jump your power supply and only power the pump. No leaks, you're golden.

Basically, there is no good reason to use mineral oil. Water cools better and is safe once you've leak tested (which is your concern right?). Also, submerging a system typically doesn't work as well as standard water cooling either. The coolant doesn't really circulate like in a standard WC system, so it doesn't dissipate heat as quickly. It's a neat concept, but it seems really inefficient.
 

BrainEater

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Actually, distilled water does not conduct when it is clean.

Wrong.

I assure you , regardless of the purity , water conducts just fine.

I know this because I just did some submersion fluid testing with an asus p5k/e6600.

Distilled water=short.
Even anhydrous Isopropanol conducts enough to short out a motherboard.

:D
 

Elledan

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Wrong.

I assure you , regardless of the purity , water conducts just fine.

I know this because I just did some submersion fluid testing with an asus p5k/e6600.

Distilled water=short.
Even anhydrous Isopropanol conducts enough to short out a motherboard.

:D

Well, free ions would be needed to conduct electricity (electrons). Assuming pure H2O this wouldn't be the case and thus it wouldn't conduct. Apparently it's hard to have truly pure water :)
 

Riccochet

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Well, free ions would be needed to conduct electricity (electrons). Assuming pure H2O this wouldn't be the case and thus it wouldn't conduct. Apparently it's hard to have truly pure water :)

Exactly. And once you pour pure water into anything you are most likely contaminating it enough to conduct electricity. Your entire loop, pump, rad, res, waterblocks would have to be 100% free from impurities, and that's just not going to happen.
 

BrainEater

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Distilled water has a conductivity of 0.04 microsiemens/cm.

When it comes to high frequency/small pin spacing type electronics ( computers ) this matters.While I know people that have made older computers run in distilled water , newer machines with the higher freqs won't.....I tried it.

I am waiting for my licence to run anhydrous ethanol......Even this has a conductivity of 0.0013 microsiemens/cm.....Low enough ? I don't know....

But a long way from 'zero' conductivity.Oil's are generally zero.So is kerosene.And both work for submersion.

:D
 

Elledan

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Better don't puncture that kerosene tank, though ;)
 

hotbrass

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I understand that impurities are difficult to keep out of a loop. I just know I had a rather sever leak my system when I first put liquid cooling in. It soaked a 9600GT and the lower section of my motherboard. That was two years ago and that system is still running today with no problems. I'm not saying you can submerge the motherboard in it for an extended period, but the original post was about concerns over conductivity in a water cooling system. Pools on the motherboard/components are not the same as submersion. I'm just saying that leak testing followed by simply watching for slow leaks should be enough to keep things safe even if you do get minor leaks at first. Just don't let it sit for long. :)
 

thaltek

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i suppose you could add a purifier to the loop..... by purifier i mean a container with vacuum pressure and electrically splitting the hydrogen from the oxygen which in turn is siphoned off and recombined in to basic water..... but that would be expensive...... i think the easier solution would be to use a thin coating of a material impervious to water such as a urethane......:p
 
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