Tip of the Week: Properly Cleaning Your Laptop

Posted: February 5, 2020

When you consider all that the typical workstation has to endure (potentially grubby hands poking at it all day, crumbs, sneezes, you get the idea), there is little wonder that our devices can get so dirty. Here, we’ll be discussing how to properly clean your device.

For the purposes of this blog, we’ll be more directly focusing on the proper technique for cleaning a laptop device. While similar, there are a few key differences between the form factors.

A few words of warning before we begin: because we are specifically dealing with laptops, there are some processes we don’t recommend that would likely void the manufacturer’s warranty on your device. We actually recommend against taking apart the device, for instance, as it won’t be prone to interior messes like a desktop form factor would be, and you could easily cause serious problems by doing so. Plus, it takes a really long time.

It is also important to remember that almost all benefits that come from cleaning a laptop will be purely cosmetic, and if performance is an issue, you should turn to Digital Sky Solutions for assistance.

Step One: Kill Power

We hope that this step goes without saying, but before you begin you need to turn off your device and unplug it. While the idea will be to use as little liquid as possible in later steps, it is better to make sure that your chance of an electric shock is minimized. Otherwise, you could find yourself in the hospital and/or in the market for a new laptop anyway.

Once your device is fully powered down and the power cable has been removed, you are okay to proceed.

Step Two: Cleaning The Device

Of course, different parts of the device will require different methods to safely clean them:

The Case

Properly cleaning the case of your device of the smudges that it accumulates over time and use is a delicate process. It is best to take a microfiber cloth and very lightly dampen it in a 5-to-1 combination of water to diluted soap. Once you have fully wrung out the cloth, wipe down the exterior of your device. As for the openings in your laptop case, liberally use compressed air to clear them of debris.

You will want to be particularly careful with the specific components of your laptop as well.

The Screen

It’s pretty tricky to use a laptop without a display, so you need to be especially careful to avoid as much moisture as possible. Therefore, you should only clean your screen with a dry microfiber cloth, or a specialized wipe intended for the job.

The Keyboard

You certainly don’t want any water entering the keys of your device, so we will avoid using it at all. First, clear out as much debris as possible by (carefully) shaking it out, or by again turning to your trusty can of compressed air. To rid the keyboard of oils, gently clean them off with a dry cloth (maybe dampening it with a little rubbing alcohol, as it dries faster). Afterwards, you can polish the spaces between the keys with a Q-tip.

Properly caring for your device may not do much to improve its actual function, but it may just help inspire you to take care of its interiors. Things like avoiding risky websites while browsing and restarting every so often can really benefit your workstation’s overall health.

Of course, we’ll also be here when it comes time to replace your device with a better-working model that more effectively meets your business’ needs. For more tips on how to maintain your technology (or any other IT questions you may have), give Digital Sky Solutions a call at (250) 483-5623 and subscribe to our blog!

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