How to Clean your Keyboard:
Cleaning the keyboard can be
a very tedious task. There are different methods of cleaning the keyboard
from using q-tips to using the dishwasher (don't do that). Some people
tend to forget the little things when it comes to their PC, and that is
simply cleaning it.
Here are the basic
supplies you will need:
- One to two cans of
compressed air. Cans of compressed air can be found at Wal-mart, an
office supply or electronic outlet. Also I know Costco stores carry
compressed air in sets. They generally run about $4-5 dollars a can, but
Wal-mart does carry an off-brand for less. It also works great for other
cleaning projects around the house as well. Be sure to also keep them
out of reach of children, as they can be quite dangerous if used
- An anti-static cloth for
dusting. When cleaning the keyboard use a anti-static cloth, rather than
an old rag. Some materials can cause static electricity and it's
possible this could transfer to the computer system.
- Q-tips for small areas.
When cleaning the small areas of the keyboard, using q-tips and some
cleaning solution will help.
Slim flat tip screwdriver: This tool will be used to remove the keys
from the keyboard when doing a thorough cleaning.
Solution of ammonia and water. This solution can be used along with the
anti-static cloth or the q-tips in areas needing a more through
cleaning. Keep in mind, however, always apply the solution to your cloth
or q-tips first, not directly to the parts you are cleaning. You want to
avoid any drips of the solution in the keyboard.
- Computer wipes. These are
ready-made cloths to use on the easy areas. They come in handy when you
need to do a fast clean up or want to avoid mixing a solution up
- Vacuum with correct
attachment. If you find the compressed air is not doing the trick, you
can always resort to using a vacuum in cleaning very dusty areas. If
possible, use a small vacuum which are designed especially for
computers, or make sure the right attachment is used and the lowest
setting. Using high powered suction on delicate parts of your computer
system would not be good.
Now that you have the
right supplies, here are the steps to get you started.
- Decide if the keyboard
needs a simple quick clean or a thorough cleaning. Secondly, make sure
you have a picture of how the keys are aligned so the keys can be put
back in the correct positions.
- Before starting any
cleaning around your computer, shut down your system and unplug the unit
from the wall. Should any liquid fall into your keyboard or computer,
this would eliminate the chance of shock and ruining any hardware.
To quickly clean your
- Start by holding it up at
an angle so any dust or debris will fall away from it, rather than
- With one hand holding the
keyboard up, use your other hand to use short quick sprays from the
compressed can of air. Most compressed air cans come with a long straw
to attach to the nozzle, which makes it easy to reach in between
- Your final step is to use
your anti-static cloth and ammonia cleaning solution for wiping down the
external parts of the keyboard.
To thoroughly clean
- Start by doing the "Quick
Clean" method to get rid of any loose debris and dust.
- Choose one side of the
keyboard to start, gently use the screwdriver beside a key pry up on the
side of the key. It should pop out. If needed gently use the screwdriver
down on the other side of the key to free it.
- Repeat this process so
there are several keys removed in a small area approximately 1 1/2 to 2
inches to work with.
- Clean the area you just
uncovered using a slightly moist q-tip. Clean the bottom of the keys as
well the same way.
- To insert the key back
into position, set the key in the proper position keeping the key
aligned, press on top of the key until it snaps into place. Test the
next key to be sure it is properly set in place.
- Repeat this process for
the whole keyboard
Most quality keyboards are
cheap enough to replace if you don't want to go through all of the trouble
of cleaning them.