eBay Motherboard - Heatsink Fell Off (VRM?) - Is it still ok?


Junior Member
May 15, 2018
I ordered a EVGA Z68 motherboard from eBay

I mainly stayed with an older board since I wanted a motherboard that had a few PCIe x8 or x16 slots.
Due to costs, (and how expensive DDR4 currently is), I wanted to keep my i7-2600K & 24GB DDR3 RAM

However, when I received the mobo, it appears that one of the heat sinks has fallen off (left side of the CPU, near the I/O slots).

Link to album: https://imgur.com/a/oC0Jrm2

Therefore, my concerns are:
  1. Is it ok like this, or should I file a claim since it's damaged?
  2. Can the system still (safely) boot, even if there is no heat sink on there?
  3. Can I reattach the Heatsink back onto the motherboard somehow?

Regarding # 3 - I saw a post of something similar that recommended using Arcticlean to remove any existing residue & then use "3M 8815 Thermally Conductive Adhesive Transfer Tape"
I'm assuming I'd have to remove the existing thermal "tape" first though?

Thanks in advance for any advice!


Golden Member
Jan 14, 2007
Aren't these two heatsink sections supposed to be connected by a heat pipe? I'm just kind of guessing you have a FTW board based on the pictures and if so, that appears to be the case, so I'm not even sure how this would be possible without some kind of misuse.

Personally, I'd contact the seller and see what they say (I ALWAYS believe in doing this before filing any sort of claim), but wouldn't be interested in keeping the board and trying to fix it myself even though it should be doable.
May 19, 2011
Aren't those heatsinks normally screwed/bolted onto the board?


Diamond Member
Oct 25, 1999
I think you should post a link to the listing on ebay so we can see what it looked like in the auction pictures.
Also let us know the exact model so we can figure out if it should have a heatpipe or not.

Next, the heatsink falling off isn't so bad by itself, but it could have bounced around and damaged some very small components on the board. If say a small capacitor was knocked off, well, that can mean your cpu gets fried upon startup. Look very closely at everything.

You can reattach that if you find the proper screws. You might need to take out a screw from the heatsink over the socket to use as an sample and then go to a hardware store or computer store to try to find a match.

I don't think transfer tape is what you want. That is called a thermal pad. The problem is that those can come in 0.5mm, 1.0mm, 1.5mm, 2.0 mm, etc. You would have to find out what the proper thickness is. Maybe you can get a caliper and get a somewhat accurate measurement, but it's tricky since it's a rubbery pad and not a solid object.
You can search ebay for thermal pads. The typical ones are blue. The spec you want to watch is the W/mk number. That is Watts per Meter Kelvin I believe. The higher the better. Common blue ones are 3W/mK. Higher is better but that will cost you.
I just replaced a pad on a board I have and the thickness was 1.5mm. That is a pretty good place to start for the mosfet pads I think, but I'm mostly guessing since I haven't seen that specific board.

edit: Yes, the board can boot without that. Low end boards don't even have mosfet heatsinks.
Its just like I mentioned above though, if there was board damage then booting may kill your cpu.

I see that the owner was really sloppy. There is thermal compound near the socket and there is no plastic socket protector. Check the board carefully before you decide to see if it works OK or not.


Cases and Cooling Mod PC Gaming Mod Elite Member
Super Moderator
Sep 28, 2005
that heatsink is mounted via screws from behind the board.
That is why that heatsink has 4 standoff's.

You can not use thermal tape, as there might be high differences, and improper mounting pressure could be attained on some of those mosfets.

You could clean the thermal pad off with alcohol, or get a new one on amazon/ebay, and cut it to size.