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Algae - what to do?

Discussion in 'Overclocking & Cooling' started by OrphanBoy, 4 Feb 2006.

  1. OrphanBoy

    Hitman

    Joined: 16 Jan 2005

    Posts: 641

    Location: Laaaandan

    Ok, so I've had an Asetek Waterchill system in my machine since August now and I've changed the water only once - when I moved to London in mid-October. Both times I've used an entire mini-bottle of that pink water wetter/anti-algae fluid which OcUK sells.

    Yet I had a quick look inside my machine today and I was shocked to see that things are living in it! Ok, it's not mega in there, but there's still enough in my opinion to be problematic in a few months time. I'm not too worried about the pipes as they can be replaced - it's the waterblock and radiator which I'm worried about!

    So is this stuff removeable? And how do I prevent it coming back this quickly next time?

    Just for reference: I seem to remember needing about 300ml of deionised water to fill it up properly.

    Thanks guys :)
     
  2. ukdave

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Oct 2003

    Posts: 280

    Location: UK

    I'd ditch all the tubing, take apart all waterblocks (carefully, and if possible) and give htem a thorough clean with some hardcore cleaning fliud, diluted. As for the rad, well that could be a problem. I'd probably connect up a pump to it underwater and just let it run through for half a day, clean water every hour or so. Maybe add a bit of bleach or something that would kill algae. And also don't forget to check out the pumpm they are usually easily to disasemmble.
     
  3. OrphanBoy

    Hitman

    Joined: 16 Jan 2005

    Posts: 641

    Location: Laaaandan

    So how would I stop it coming back next time? I'll be damned if I'm gonna strip it to pieces and clean it to death every couple of months!
     
  4. ukdave

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Oct 2003

    Posts: 280

    Location: UK

    Might be worth putting a bit of anti-freeze in.
     
  5. Matt82

    Capodecina

    Joined: 13 Mar 2004

    Posts: 16,569

    cant bleach be added to the water
     
  6. ukdave

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Oct 2003

    Posts: 280

    Location: UK

    Probably could but i'm not sur ehow that would effect things, it may be a bit nastier than anti-freeze on the blocks.
     
  7. Cyber-Mav

    Capodecina

    Joined: 30 Jul 2005

    Posts: 14,015

    Location: Midlands

    were you dumb enough to use tap water?

    you should be using de-ionised water with a corrosion inhibitor like water wetter. if your using normal tap water then you deserve for this to happen. :p
     
  8. OrphanBoy

    Hitman

    Joined: 16 Jan 2005

    Posts: 641

    Location: Laaaandan

    :)
    Nah, this is stuff that I bought from a garage (Tesco's petrol station!) as designed for car radiators...

    And I mixed the water wetter in with the ratio given on the side of the bottle.

    Gonna pull it all out maybe next weekend but I was planning on getting a GPU block so I'll prob time it all round then. Just ain't too keen on putting things like bleach in the system as I don't know what kind of effect it'll have on the pipes - can it corrode metal too? (I seriously have no idea!)
     
  9. MikeTimbers

    Soldato

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 6,913

    Location: New Eltham, London

    Don't use bleach. One good method is to submerge the pump and the return pipe into a bucket. Fill the bucket with hot water mixed with several of the pellets used to clean/sterilise babies' bottles. Use boiling water. Run the mixture through the entire system for several hours (obviously with the computer off and the blocks away from their cpu/gpu! You don't want boiling water heating those up!)

    That should cleanse and sterilise the system. Then dismantle and drain completely. Re-fill with pure water - I use water from my reverse osmosis drinking water system mixed with Halfords Coolant Conditioner.
     
  10. Nixeh

    Hitman

    Joined: 3 Jun 2005

    Posts: 874

    Location: Bristol/Portsmouth, England

    Hmm im pretty sure algae only works if you use tap water. Shouldnt happen with deionnised water.
     
  11. MikeTimbers

    Soldato

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 6,913

    Location: New Eltham, London

    Unless the rest of the system is also perfect, the deionised water won't prevent algae. If there is any contamination in the system, algae will flourish in the warm dark water.
     
  12. OrphanBoy

    Hitman

    Joined: 16 Jan 2005

    Posts: 641

    Location: Laaaandan

    You don't have to de-algae car radiators, right?

    Just for the hell of it, as I never bothered bin the last bottle of water I used (as I still had some left), I had a look in the bottle to see if any of that magical green stuff was there. And no, there wasn't. So why's it in my computer instead? Is it because it's warm?

    And no, when I'm gonna fill it up again I'm not gonna use that 'old' water :)
    Also, how am I going to stop it coming back like this again? Use double the amount of water wetter?
     
  13. MikeTimbers

    Soldato

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 6,913

    Location: New Eltham, London

    Car radiators have anti-freeze and the water also gets much more than "warm".
     
  14. YooEntSinMeROYT

    Mobster

    Joined: 25 Dec 2002

    Posts: 2,911

    Location: Location: Location

    That's the method I used to clean my system previously, has now been running for around 8 months or more & still no growth in the water.
    My de-ionised water contains water wetter & UV Green dye.
    So I think the cleaning was successful. ;)
     
    Last edited: 4 Feb 2006
  15. Cyber-Mav

    Capodecina

    Joined: 30 Jul 2005

    Posts: 14,015

    Location: Midlands

    anitfreeze is not really necessary in pc water cooling since all it does is alter the characteristics of water to have a higher boiling point and a lower freezing point.
    water wetter is the best stuff to use since it helps to break down the surface tension of water and provide corrosion protection.

    always use de-ionised water in pc cooling never use tap water since deionised water will not leave behind residue such as limescale etc.
     
  16. OrphanBoy

    Hitman

    Joined: 16 Jan 2005

    Posts: 641

    Location: Laaaandan

    Ok, one final thing - does algae grow more if there's light? Dunno how much it'll affect it but the RAM sticks I have have (stupid) LEDs on the top.
     
  17. MikeTimbers

    Soldato

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 6,913

    Location: New Eltham, London

    Aparently yes.