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Tap into A/C and heat for PC?

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  • Tap into A/C and heat for PC?

    There is an A/C / Heating duct right behind where my truckputer is going. I don't NEED the extra space but could sure use it for my VGA cable that's sticking out the back. Would it be a good idea to cut a small hole in that duct? That way I get A/C on the computer in the summer to cool it and heat in the winter to warm it? I wouldn't put a huge hole in it because I still want some air to come out of the vents it feeds.
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  • #2
    only problem i'd see is, in the winter if its cold outside, and you turn on the heat. It'll do great the first few minutes, but after the PC is already warm, there'll still be heat constantly injected into the system.

    i live in alberta, and i never need to do this.

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    • #3
      Where abouts?
      I live in Kamloops now where it goes from -30 to +40 but will be moving to Edmonton in August.

      My worry is in the summer. Maybe I'll just punch some holes in the case, install some temp. monitoring software and call it good enough.
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      • #4
        The problem with using a/c ducts to cool a PC is that it will cause condensation build up on your components and we all know water and electronics don't mix.

        Now if you can limit the flow of air greatly and have it not blow directly on it you may be able to reduce the temperature w/o really creating any issues. Like you PC in your house with the a/c on. You just don't want to blast a hot PC with cold air and have the temperature drop really fast.

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        • #5
          calgary Alberta, about 300km south of edmonton. we get about +35*C to -35*C here.
          As long as you choose a decently low power cpu, and leave your car in the trunk that should be enough for overheat issues. Have a look at the extreme cold hard drive thread for more information in the cold.

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          • #6
            Condensation is your big problem. I wouldn't recommend you do that.
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            • #7
              Wouldn't do it. My car pc is installed in a similar manner but overheats in the WINTER. The hot air leaks out of the vent joints of the oem system and gets near the pc intake. After that, it takes about 40 minutes before the pc overheats.

              I end up having to carefully balance the foot and head air control to keep it from overheating.
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              • #8
                Thinking out of the box here:

                What if you ran something like this: Corsair H50 Liquid CPU cooler and mounted the radiator perpendicular to the air stream in your vent line. You could then drill small holes and run the tubes out of the vent line, and seal it up. This would combat the moisture issue associated with it, but may still pose a problem when the heat is on. (hmm... I'll think about this some more.)

                Just thinking outside the box. You can brag to friends that your truckputer is liquid cooled by your AC!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ws6vert View Post
                  Thinking out of the box here:

                  What if you ran something like this: Corsair H50 Liquid CPU cooler and mounted the radiator perpendicular to the air stream in your vent line. You could then drill small holes and run the tubes out of the vent line, and seal it up. This would combat the moisture issue associated with it, but may still pose a problem when the heat is on. (hmm... I'll think about this some more.)

                  Just thinking outside the box. You can brag to friends that your truckputer is liquid cooled by your AC!
                  Typically heat is routed to the lower vents and A/C to the upper vents...if your car is setup that way (or if you typically follow that idea) then you would get A/C only.

                  You could also hack up the actual airbox so that the heatsink is mounted next to the evaporator.
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                  • #10
                    It's much easier to just build a system using components that will handle the temperature extremes better (eg ssd). Might end up costing less too.

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                    • #11
                      Agree with the ssd drive having a higher temperature threshold, but as far as overheating with the CPU... not sure I know of any "components" that are cheaper than what I linked to, and if you can run it into a cold air vent, then you have eliminated overheating. Seems pretty simple and straightforward to me. Also doesn't seem that expensive if you don't mind messing with your vehicle, which I'm assuming most users on this forum don't mind.

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