2009 Mac Pro Overheating Issues - Help

PowerMac G4 MDD

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Hi everyone,

My brother got a free 2009 Mac Pro (2.26Ghz 8-core w/4GB of RAM). He tried putting in his GPU and HDD; the Mac worked for a while, but then it shut off with the Northridge heatsink at over 200 degrees F.

Does anyone know what the issue could be? Sadly, I don't have access to the machine now. I'm reporting what my brother says about it; he's probably less willing to post about it here, so I'm trying to figure out what could be wrong with it.

Thanks,

-MDD
 

adam9c1

macrumors 68000
May 2, 2012
1,778
287
Chicagoland
Northbridge mounting clip broke.

Very common. I had it happen to me few weeks back.

Get a demo of temperature gauge pro and force fans to high speed, backup your machine and shut down.

Need to remove both CPUs to fix.
 

PowerMac G4 MDD

macrumors 68000
Original poster
I actually found an article right after (should have done that before posting this.) I hope that's the case. If so, it's perfectly fixable. I've got some Gelid paste left that I can use with it (if that's what it needs). Does it just take a rice-grain?

BTW, are these mounting clips easy to find? I'm gonna check, but something tells me that it would be hard to specify the part in a search. Or maybe I just get some thermal adhesive that can hold it in place?
 

PowerMac G4 MDD

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Northbridge mounting clip broke.

Very common. I had it happen to me few weeks back.

Get a demo of temperature gauge pro and force fans to high speed, backup your machine and shut down.

Need to remove both CPUs to fix.
So are the CPUs in the way of the Northbridge heatsink? I'm not familiar with where it is in a 2009 Mac Pro. My brother has it with him; I only own a 2006 Mac Pro, whose interior layout is a bit different.
 

pastrychef

macrumors 601
Sep 15, 2006
4,520
1,026
New York City, NY
It's not really in the way... The Northbridge heatsink is under one of the CPU heatsinks, but you will have to remove both heatsinks and the circuit board from the tray to do the repair anyway.

It's not too difficult of a fix. Just replace the two heatsink retainers.
 

PowerMac G4 MDD

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Thanks for the replies on this! I'm wondering about replacement parts, though. After posting, I looked up the issue further and found someone who said that their heatsink's mounting clips/brackets were broken. Anyone know where to get a replacement part or something? Or can I use thermal adhesive to put this back on? I'm currently assuming it's falling off, but I'm not quite sure. It sounds stupid, but I don't have the Mac in my possession at the moment.
 

PowerMac G4 MDD

macrumors 68000
Original poster
https://forums.macrumors.com/thread...at-sink-on-2009-mac-pro-2x2-26.1637891/page-2

To save trouble, here is a meaty thread on this same topic. The final verdict was the OP finding new clips that were similar enough to the stock ones and actually resulted in a slightly cooler Northbrige heatsink. Sadly, the two buying links he posted currenty lead nowhere; I'm going to contact him about this.

EDIT: He hasn't been online since April... but I'm going to look further into the thread, as it may say somewhere the model name of those snaps he ended up using.
 
Last edited:

Macsonic

macrumors 68000
Sep 6, 2009
1,601
60
https://forums.macrumors.com/thread...at-sink-on-2009-mac-pro-2x2-26.1637891/page-2

To save trouble, here is a meaty thread on this same topic. The final verdict was the OP finding new clips that were similar enough to the stock ones and actually resulted in a slightly cooler Northbrige heatsink. Sadly, the two buying links he posted currenty lead nowhere; I'm going to contact him about this.

EDIT: He hasn't been online since April... but I'm going to look further into the thread, as it may say somewhere the model name of those snaps he ended up using.
Hi PowerMac G4MDD I think here is the rivet clip that was used for the Northbridge based on this posting https://forums.macrumors.com/thread...9-mac-pro-2x2-26.1637891/page-2#post-18476396 Though I may not be sure if they are the correct rivets. Maybe somebody can confirm.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/10x-PC-Heat...779?_trksid=p2054897.l4275&afsrc=1&rmvSB=true
 

adam9c1

macrumors 68000
May 2, 2012
1,778
287
Chicagoland
I purchased these above and thought they were sitting too high.
Would not clear the one cpu heatsink partially covering (I did install it but removed, did not try to put down the heatsink).

I ended up using some stand offs from a northbridge from a spare PC motherboard. Worked like a charm.
 

DPUser

macrumors 6502a
Jan 17, 2012
927
228
Rancho Bohemia, California
I just ordered a 10 pack of these from Ebay… thinking a little trimming may well allow them to work, and buying in advance of an issue with my 2009. Its a risky $3.98 (including shipping) investment, but I'm feeling lucky this morning! Alternate will be some nylon bolts with the existing or new springs. Others have used thermal epoxy with success.
 

PowerMac G4 MDD

macrumors 68000
Original poster
I just ordered a 10 pack of these from Ebay… thinking a little trimming may well allow them to work, and buying in advance of an issue with my 2009. Its a risky $3.98 (including shipping) investment, but I'm feeling lucky this morning! Alternate will be some nylon bolts with the existing or new springs. Others have used thermal epoxy with success.
Let me know if you have success with them, and how much (if any) you needed to trim off of them! I'll still be looking around. I'd really like to know what kinds of snaps that guy who had success with this used. He claimed to have them work and even keep the heat sink cooler than the stock ones did.
 

PowerMac G4 MDD

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Hi PowerMac G4MDD I think here is the rivet clip that was used for the Northbridge based on this posting https://forums.macrumors.com/thread...9-mac-pro-2x2-26.1637891/page-2#post-18476396 Though I may not be sure if they are the correct rivets. Maybe somebody can confirm.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/10x-PC-Heat...779?_trksid=p2054897.l4275&afsrc=1&rmvSB=true
Hi, again! More Mac Pro issues--yes. ;) Towers are cool, but they just require so much fiddling with, and much of it is the user just wanting to change things around. This, of course, is a hardware issue.

I saw that link on the thread, but the OP said that he worried that they were a bit too tall. He posted links to the ones he ended up going with, but those links are dead. I've messaged him, but it looks as though he has been inactive for some months. If I can never find out which ones he bought, I COULD try thermal adhesive... but has anyone had success with that?
 

PowerMac G4 MDD

macrumors 68000
Original poster
I purchased these above and thought they were sitting too high.
Would not clear the one cpu heatsink partially covering (I did install it but removed, did not try to put down the heatsink).

I ended up using some stand offs from a northbridge from a spare PC motherboard. Worked like a charm.
I wonder if I have a spare PC motherboard from which I can pull stand offs... I guess I'll check and see.
 

adam9c1

macrumors 68000
May 2, 2012
1,778
287
Chicagoland
I ended up using NB mounts from an old PC board I had. Running well for a week.

I did recently buy a set of NB heat sink fan and standoffs from Micro Center as a backup.
 

Larry-K

macrumors 68000
Jun 28, 2011
1,852
2,316
Hi, again! More Mac Pro issues--yes. ;) Towers are cool, but they just require so much fiddling with, and much of it is the user just wanting to change things around. This, of course, is a hardware issue.

I saw that link on the thread, but the OP said that he worried that they were a bit too tall. He posted links to the ones he ended up going with, but those links are dead. I've messaged him, but it looks as though he has been inactive for some months. If I can never find out which ones he bought, I COULD try thermal adhesive... but has anyone had success with that?
Some people should never open a MacPro. I've modded dozens of them with no issues, but I'm paying attention.
 

Macsonic

macrumors 68000
Sep 6, 2009
1,601
60
Hi, again! More Mac Pro issues--yes. ;) Towers are cool, but they just require so much fiddling with, and much of it is the user just wanting to change things around. This, of course, is a hardware issue.

I saw that link on the thread, but the OP said that he worried that they were a bit too tall. He posted links to the ones he ended up going with, but those links are dead. I've messaged him, but it looks as though he has been inactive for some months. If I can never find out which ones he bought, I COULD try thermal adhesive... but has anyone had success with that?
Hello Hope you get to fix your brother's cMac Pro. He's very lucky to get one at no cost. As far as I know it's seldom that the northbridge has heat issues in these towers unless it was used heavily with too much ambient heat.
 
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