Arctic Silver Thermal Paste (Applying)


Established Member
Just downloaded Arctic Silvers pdf for applying the thermal paste to an AMD Athlon Quad Core. It suggests a small ball in the centre of the CPU with no spreading, just press down with a little side to side twist.
Have read other articles re spreading thinly with a credit card or similar.

Any advice please.


Prominent Member
Too much is actually just as bad as none at all :eek:

I normally put on a tiny blob and smear it with some thin cardboard (usually the packaging of the one of the components I am playing with)

My general rule is just about enough to cover the writing on the CPU


I normally apply paste about the size of a grain of rice to the centre of the CPU and attach the heatsink. The pressure of attaching the h/s spreads the paste evenly over the surface.
I never spread the paste - well the exception was when applying the cheap & nasty paste supplied by Dell when repairing PC's at work. That required a lot more paste and you needed to spread it out to get even coverage. I was gobsmacked the first time I saw the Dell engineer applying a full syringe of paste, but it seems to work better for those PC's :rolleyes:



Standard Member
My technique with artic silver I dabbed about the size of a rice grain on the processor and spread it thinly with a mobile phone top up card you can pick up in any supermarket.


Standard Member
Another technique which allows you better control is to cover the tip of your finger with a clear plastic bag, sandwich bag, etc and apply a small blob no bigger than an uncooked grain of rice then smooth it out with your finger ensuring your spread the paste evenly and thinly.

Never use too much or you'll do more harm than good and DO NOT let the paste go anywhere else but the top of your cpu otherwise you could short out your Mobo.



Standard Member
Tainteds method is also equaly good, just to add to that by adding a very tiny ammount to the heat sink getting applied and useing the plastic bag tricky spead it around VERY finely and then rub the excess off so all you see is a sort of stained silver on the copper.

What this does is allow tiny ammounts of paste in the tiny crevices on the heatsink which can allow better temps as simply popping a heatsink ontop won't have the same effect.

This one can work for all methods.


Established Member
Thanks All.............that's made it clearer. :rolleyes:

I think I'm going with the smear option only because I'll know the CPU is fully covered. :thumbsup:


Standard Member
I would only use thermal paste, if you are willing to use anything then at least go to a local computer store and ask if they sell any, i'm sure you could pick up something that will do the trick it's only cheap.


Just apply a small dot in the centre of the cpu and mount the heatsink.

Spreading can introduce air bubbles.

And thermal compound isn't needed all over the ihs as the cores are in the centre.

Thermal compound is just there to fill any microscopic gaps in the cpu and heatsink to aid heat transfer

YouTube - How Thermal Compound Spreads


Prominent Member
Cut the finger off a rubber glove and spread thinly using that, or if like myself you don't have any, just cut out a small section of a plastic bad (the thin transparent ones) and put it on the end of your finger and apply that way.

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