In the modern day and age, the graphic cards that are available in the market have started to get massive, and we do not blame the manufacturers either because these GPUs need bigger coolers to cool them down.
However, a bigger and heftier air cooler normally means that there is going to be some GPU sag. Which basically is your GPU slightly being inclined where the weight is at its most, giving it a look that almost feels like it is bending the GPU.
Now, GPU sag is nothing new, it has been around for a long time, and a lot of people have not only shown their concerns but have also talked about various ways these can be tackled. That is why we are going to talk about it in detail and see how we can help remedy this issue.
What Is GPU Sag?
Now, we have to start looking into just what exactly GPU sag is. Honestly, it is not hard to understand to begin with.
For starters, GPU sag is entirely normal, but still, for those wondering, it refers to the phenomenon where your GPU starts inclining below the position it is installed in.
This mostly happens with the heavier GPUs because the PCB itself cannot hold the weight of the GPU properly. I know it does sound scary, but in reality, GPU sag is a lot more common than you might think.
Thankfully, there are several remedies to counter GPU sag, so you know that you are not getting into any trouble if your GPU is inevitably sagging. Just be sure that you know what needs to be done.
Related reading: How to clean a GPU in 2023?
How Bad Is GPU Sag?
Now, it should not really come as a surprise, but GPU sag is not at all bad in the most common of cases. I have used some of the heaviest GPUs for a long, long time and never really ran into issues with the GPU sag.
As a matter of fact, in most of the cases, the sag was never really a problem, and everything worked as it was supposed to. However, GPU sag can become a problem if there is inherently something wrong with the way the GPU is installed.
How To Know If Your GPU Card Has Sagging Damage?
Ideally, if you have installed the GPU the right way, you will be more than okay in every sense of the way. However, there are certain conditions in which the GPU sag can end up damaging the card, and that is what you will have to be careful with.
In order to inspect everything, I would highly suggest that you are looking at the GPU from the PCI connection and you also check the PCB itself. If it is straight when you plug out the GPU and straight even when the GPU is plugged in, it means that there is no damage.
However, if the PCB has started to bend and that too, without returning to form, then there is some sagging damage, and you must try and fix it as soon as you can.
How Do I Fix GPU Sag In 2023?
Thankfully, fixing the GPU sag in 2023 is not at all complicated. You would be surprised as to how many ways there are that would allow you to cater to your needs and that too, without any complications. Still, I’m going to list some important ones below.
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#1 – Use GPU Sag Bracket or Brace
The first one is perhaps the most common, and it is something that is used a lot of times. You can buy a GPU sag bracket or brace that would fix any sagging issues. The best part is that in most cases, GPU manufacturers supply you with these brackets in the box.
These brackets are installed just like a GPU is installed, and they provide enough support for the GPU as there is no sagging involved and yes, these brackets are low profile, allowing you to not worry about any restricted airflow. You can also buy these from Amazon for cheaper rates if you wish to go ahead with that.
#2 – Hang It Up With A Wire
Although a bit unconventional, I have seen some builds in the past in which people use thin enough wires to hang the GPU. The wire essentially keeps the GPU in place and prevents it from sagging.
Now, it might sound like a very sensible thing to do, but in reality, the wire can be unsightly, and you might not enjoy how things turn out. Therefore, it is best if you avoid it altogether unless you are out of options, then you can look into this.
#3 – Route PCIe Cables Upward
This is a hit or miss, to be honest. However, when it works, it works really well. In most cases, the PCIe cables are routed from the bottom.
However, if you route them from the top, you have a chance of reducing the sag, as the cables end up providing some amount of support.
I cannot say this for sure in every case because heavier GPUs might not benefit from this at all, but it certainly is something that you should look into.
#4 – The Vertical Placement of GPU
If you want to completely eliminate GPU sag, the best thing that I would suggest to you is that you should go ahead and vertically mount the GPU; most of the modern cases in the market allow for vertical GPU mounting.
However, I would highly advise that you are being careful in this regard because if the GPU is too close to the glass panel, you are going to restrict the airflow terribly, and that could choke the GPU from any air.
#5 – Fishing Line/String
This is another thing that a lot of people are going to not like, and yes, this is the same that goes for me. If you are encountering GPU sag, then you can go ahead and actually use a fishing line or a string to tie up the GPU.
Unlike a wire, a fishing line or a string is going to be a lot thinner and can easily be used to hide in plain sight. Again, I would not suggest that you are using this method. Only do it if this is the only option that you have.
#6 – Custom 3D Print
3D printing changed a lot of things for those who are always in the mood for some DIY, and well, if you are running into issues with GPU sag, a common solution that I can give to you is that you should go ahead and try to 3D print a GPU bracket or something that helps you remove the sag.
The process itself is super easy, and you really will not have any issues or problems coming your way; that is what I can always assure you.
#7 – Change Case Position
This is one of the methods that I would not advise anyone to go with because it involves you flipping the position of the case upside down.
Now, it might sound like something that is useful, but it will only end up making things look odd, and honestly, I cannot really guarantee how it is going to turn out.
Therefore, if you genuinely want things to be perfectly fine, do not change the case position under any circumstances, as you will only create more issues for yourself.
My Final Verdict:
I fully understand people getting scared over the fact that there is a chance that your GPU starts sagging.
I remember the first time it happened to be, but after all the years of using different GPUs and different builds, I have come to the realization that it really does not matter as long as you are doing things the right way.
If it helps, I currently do not have any GPU bracket installed for the sag. Just be sure that the screws are tightly in place, and you are good to go.
Frequently Asked Questions
Question 1: Is it OK for GPU to sag?
Yes, there is nothing worrying about the GPU sagging. As long as the sag is not permanently bending the PCB, you should not have to worry about it at all. Almost all the GPUs with heavier coolers do go through the sagging.
Question 2: How much GPU sag is too much?
If you are noticing a significant bend in your GPU and have an impression that the GPU might permanently bend, it is better that you do something about it.
Question 3: Do I need to use an anti-SAG bracket?
Not particularly. However, if your GPU is sagging and you need something to counter that, I would highly suggest that you are going for a proper anti-sag bracket, and you are good to go.
Question 4: Is vertical GPU better?
Although vertical GPU mounting will get rid of the sag entirely, it will also restrict the airflow. Therefore, it is better to keep that in mind before you go ahead and mount your GPU vertically.
Question 5: How do you mount a graphics card vertically?
You can mount your GPU vertically with ease by just investing in a vertical mounting bracket and a PCIe riser cable. You have to be sure that your case is capable of supporting the vertical mounting.
Question 6: How Do I Tighten My GPU?
Tightening the GPU is not at all difficult; you are going to need a screw, and just be sure that you properly tighten it, and you are good to go.
Question 7: How Much Do GPUs Weigh?
Honestly, this is something that entirely varies from GPU to GPU, with some GPUs being on the lighter side while other GPUs being on the heavier side.
Question 8: Do GPU Backplates prevent Sag?
Not really, GPU backplates do not really prevent sag. If anything, they only add a bit more weight to the GPU.
Question 9: Does GPU Sag Impact Temperature?
Not really, GPU sag has absolutely nothing to do with the temperatures, and this is one thing that you must keep in mind.