Another confirmed card bake fix

Discussion created by dfht684 on Oct 17, 2017
Latest reply on Oct 17, 2017 by elstaci

Just wanted to confirm several of the other card baking threads:


Describe your system:

  • AMD Graphics Card - XFX R9 290X Double Dissipation
  • Desktop
  • Operating System - Windows 10 64bit
  • Driver version installed - Radeon Software Crimson Edition 17.7.2
    • Display Devices - DELL U2711, DVI, 2560x1440, 60Hz
      • Motherboard + Bios Revision - Gigabyte GA-P67A-UD3-B3
        • CPU/APU - Intel Core i5 2500K
          • Power Supply Unit  Make, Model & Wattage - SeaSonic 750W Platinum Certified
            • RAM - 16 GB


              Describe your issue:

              • Before (Deteriorating graphics response):
                • Black screen randomly, hard crash most often
                • Rendering device lost in Overwatch
                • Black screen on windows login (in safe mode too!)
                • Black screen on driver install (while tinkering with versions; in safe mode too!)
                • Black screen on mouse movement in safe mode, while attempting to install drivers
                • Most stable driver install = 17.6.2
                  • 17.7.1 and 17.7.2 were completely unstable
                • Worst point: bootable into windows using 17.6.2 drivers, could only run OW and HotS @ Lowest Settings
              • After bake:
                • running 17.7.2
                • everything stable again
                • running OW @ Ultra, HotS @ Extreme (auto-detection settings)


              Bake details:

              1. 395F, convection mode (for much more even temperature throughout oven)
              2. 11 min total bake time
              3. used crumpled aluminum balls to prop card up, gpu side face up
              4. After bake, I pulled out immediately. I saw some recommendations to let the card cool off with the oven (so you don't introduce micro-cracking immediately) but I didn't have time with the oven self clean
              5. ran oven self clean afterwards - in attempt to remove any contaminants. mine took 3 hours.
              6. Attempted positive air pressure with open window near kitchen to force out contaminants


              Card Prep details:

              1. Removed all screws from card back
              2. Removed 1 small screw connecting fan to plastic/metal sub-frame (there's a plastic frame holding the fan and it's attached to the metal sub-frame)
              3. Removed 2 screws securing metal sub-frame to panel backing (where ports are)
              4. Pried off fan, detached power cable. Easily pried off since it's just held in place by thermal paste after removal of screws
              5. Cleaned off old thermal paste
              6. Pried off metal sub-frame. Less easy to pry off, I think the tacky-padding material got the frame stuck.
              7. Removed tacky-padding material used underneath metal sub-frame that got left over on some chips, applied back to sub-frame
              8. Only plastic piece left should be the fan power-connector
              9. Bake!


              Putting card back together was the reverse - just need to apply new thermal paste.


              I know this isn't a permanent fix. But I'm just 6 mo out of the warranty so it was a last resort for a $400 card. Expecting 6 months of run time. But also expecting to bake again - with diminishing returns to maybe 4-5 months up time next time? That's an additional full year of using this card! Though I may investigate more future-proof fixes, like reapplying solder.


              Again, just wanted to document (another) bake fix. A lot of the threads I saw only mentioned fixes but didn't specify any instructions. I found 1 instruction on the site and 1 on ifixit after digging around extensively. But because of the lack of confirmation with the methods, I was hesitant on using it - since there are a lot of naysayers who promoted using a heat-gun instead.