EK improves nickel plating to solve corrosion issues

Written by Antony Leather

July 28, 2011 // 2:46 p.m.

Tags: #aquatuning #ek #ek-waterblocks #pump #radiator #waterblock #water-cooled #water-cooling

EK has announced that it plans to improve the nickel-plating process it uses when manufacturing its waterblocks.

We previously reported that the waterblock manufacturer had halted production of its nickel-plated waterblocks, due to reports from customers that the plating had started to corrode.

This, according to EK, was due to the mixing of certain types of coolant, silver coils and copper sulphate-based additives, which are both used as anti-algae treatments.

However, a member of water-cooling forum RRTech called rubidium completed his own testing, and revealed what seems to point at sub-standard nickel plating, with plenty of copper visible through the plating on the site's test sample.

Thankfully, EK has finally come up with a solution. The company says it will now be using Electroless nickel plating - a more expensive and harder-wearing method of depositing a layer of nickel onto the surface of copper waterblocks.

According to EK, the process is up to five times more expensive than the standard electroplating method it had been using, while offering far-improved resistance to corrosion and a hardness equal to hard chrome and superior to that of electrolytic copper.

EK also states that the 'old' blocks will continue to be sold, but with advisories on which coolants and additives to use to avoid corrosion issues. Both old and new nickel-plated waterblocks will still come with EK's 24-month warranty, although the company claims that very few people have returned corroded waterblocks.

Do you own one of the affected blocks? Are you planning to buy one of EK's nickel-plated blocks in the future? Let us know in the forums.

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