Lukeb5301
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 10, 2017 3:09 am

Thermal Paste - Fried board?

Wed May 10, 2017 3:14 am

I decided to user Thermal Paste for my heatsinks on the RP3 and like a dummy put a bit too much, it ran off onto the board. I used some alcohol and q-tips to try to clean it up the best I could but now when I start the Pi I get no picture. The lights still power on and blink like normal but my monitor gets no signal. Everything worked fine before this incident.

I'm assuming the board is dead but figured I'd ask here if anyone has any other ideas.

Thanks

FYI, Thermal Paste used was some left over Arctic Silver - 5 High-Density Polysynthetic Silver 3.5g I had from building my PC.

immersion
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Apr 27, 2015 12:09 am

Re: Thermal Paste - Fried board?

Wed May 10, 2017 9:22 am

In most cases, a thermal paste is not electrically conductive. There are some metal-based ones that could cause damage when applied on pcb boards.
Arctic Silver 5 seems to contain silver, zinc and aluminum oxide. But the official page states:
Not Electrically Conductive:
Arctic Silver 5 was formulated to conduct heat, not electricity.
(While much safer than electrically conductive silver and copper greases, Arctic Silver 5 should be kept away from electrical traces, pins, and leads. While it is not electrically conductive, the compound is very slightly capacitive and could potentially cause problems if it bridges two close-proximity electrical paths.)
What kind of alcohol did you use? If you cleaned it well and gave it time to evaporate before turning on, technically there shouldn't be a problem.

MaxK1
Posts: 1043
Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2012 11:34 pm

Re: Thermal Paste - Fried board?

Wed May 10, 2017 9:25 am

It's possible you were a little too heavy handed with the Q-tip and dis-lodged something between the SoC and the HDMI connector.
You would need to inspect that area (with some form of magnification). What type of alcohol? (Please - not the stuff that Bubba makes out in the woods... :lol: )Are you sure it had completely evaporated before you tried booting it up?
You are in a maze of twisty little passages, all alike.
When General Failure and Major Disaster get together, Private Parts usually suffers.

Lukeb5301
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 10, 2017 3:09 am

Re: Thermal Paste - Fried board?

Thu May 11, 2017 1:04 am

I used some regular first aid alcohol, 70% Isopropyl Alcohol

I took a look at the board and noticed right by the HDMI input the little tiny black thing on L7 is completely gone, which is weird considering I didnt even touch that part. I must've done something somehow before that.

Anyways, Assuming this is the issue as the lights are still blinking as if its working just nothing on the monitor from HDMI. I guess my next question is, is there any fixing this or do I just fork over $35 and deal with it.

Thanks guys!
Here's a picture of what I'm talking about, as you can see theres L4 5 6 & 7, On my pi the L7 chip is missing

Image

klricks
Posts: 6609
Joined: Sat Jan 12, 2013 3:01 am
Location: Grants Pass, OR, USA
Contact: Website

Re: Thermal Paste - Fried board?

Thu May 11, 2017 3:42 am

Lukeb5301 wrote:I used some regular first aid alcohol, 70% Isopropyl Alcohol

I took a look at the board and noticed right by the HDMI input the little tiny black thing on L7 is completely gone, which is weird considering I didnt even touch that part. I must've done something somehow before that.

Anyways, Assuming this is the issue as the lights are still blinking as if its working just nothing on the monitor from HDMI. I guess my next question is, is there any fixing this or do I just fork over $35 and deal with it.

Thanks guys!
Here's a picture of what I'm talking about, as you can see theres L4 5 6 & 7, On my pi the L7 chip is missing
70% IPA means 30% H2O. Next time better to use higher % IPA. The best I can find OTC is 91% here in US. Best would be industrial grade 99.9% if you can find it.

Your board could possibly be fixed if L7 is the only problem, but if you don't know anyone that has the skills and will do it for free then it would cost you more than $35 to have it fixed.

You could use the RPi 'headless' from a remote computer via SSH or RealVNC.
OR
Composite video will probably still work if L7 is the only missing part.
Unless specified otherwise my response is based on the latest and fully updated Raspbian Buster w/ Desktop OS.

Lukeb5301
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 10, 2017 3:09 am

Re: Thermal Paste - Fried board?

Fri May 12, 2017 1:43 am

Something like this should work, right?

http://katalog.we-online.de/en/pbs/WE-C ... 00#vs_ct:2

stderr
Posts: 2178
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:29 pm

Re: Thermal Paste - Fried board?

Fri May 12, 2017 2:43 am

Lukeb5301 wrote:Anyways, Assuming this is the issue as the lights are still blinking as if its working just nothing on the monitor from HDMI. I guess my next question is, is there any fixing this or do I just fork over $35 and deal with it.
Did you try sshing into the board? You certainly don't need the hdmi to use the pi for something, even if you might need a new one for the application you are using it for now.

Lukeb5301
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed May 10, 2017 3:09 am

Re: Thermal Paste - Fried board?

Wed May 17, 2017 1:30 am

stderr wrote:
Lukeb5301 wrote:Anyways, Assuming this is the issue as the lights are still blinking as if its working just nothing on the monitor from HDMI. I guess my next question is, is there any fixing this or do I just fork over $35 and deal with it.
Did you try sshing into the board? You certainly don't need the hdmi to use the pi for something, even if you might need a new one for the application you are using it for now.

Yes everything but HDMI works. looks like I'll be finding some non HDMI projects to use this Pi with. Thanks!

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