How to Clean a Computer Keyboard


How to Clean a Computer Keyboard

Most PC keyboards can get dirty after prolonged use, even if you try your best to keep them clean. Over time, all this accumulated grime can affect the performance of a keyboard. All you’ll need to do to keep your keyboard clean most times is unplug it and it cleaning with pumped air or rubbing alcohol.

Spills cause more damage, so if anything wet comes in contact with the keyboard, the best thing you can do is disconnect it and wipe it dry immediately.

Step One – Turn Off the Pc and Disconnect All Cables

If you want to protect the equipment from damage, turn off the PC before even thinking about cleaning your keyboard. If the keyboard has a cable, pull the plug that connects it to the PC.

However, if it is not possible to remove the device, disconnect the power cord from the computer to avoid the danger of electric shock.

Moreover, you can disconnect most USB keyboards before turning off the computer. However, doing this with a regular keyboard could damage the computer. Therefore, always turn off the PC before disconnecting anything if you are unsure.

Remove the batteries from Bluetooth keyboards if you intend to give the keys a thorough cleaning.

Step Two – Turn It Upside Down and Give It a Good Shake

Turn the keyboard upside down and shake out as many bits of dirt as you can. Shake it gently, and all kinds of crumbs and dust may fall right off. Tilt it around and tap it on its back to make sure all the debris is out.

Search for the sound of bits and pieces inside of the keyboard. Sometimes mechanical keyboards and other devices that have raised keys may end up with some debris under them. Consider disassembling the keyboard for a thorough cleaning.

If you want to clean a laptop, put it upside down and gently support it while cleaning all the crumbs that might have fallen into its keys.

You could also use a gel cleanser to remove residue between the keys. These gels have a slimy consistency that can be spread on the electronic and peeled off.

The loose residue may stick to the goo as the product comes off. Before investing in a gel cleanser, be sure to look into reviews of each product so that you don’t accidentally buy a bad one.

Step Three – Blow out the Dust with Compressed Air

Air-blowing is the handiest cleaning practice there is, so you should get your compressed air machine from a local electronics department or store if you don’t own one.

If you want to use it, you have to attach the plastic straw to the nozzle and hold the can pointed toward the keys. Move the nozzle from left to right on the keyboard with constant flows of air.

Keep the device 1/2 inch over the keyboard all the time. Blow it from different angles if you want to clean it completely. Have it face you first and then turn it to each side.

Hold it while blowing on it if you are cleaning a laptop or membrane keyboard. Maintain it inclined at an angle of about 75 degrees so that it is not completely vertical.

Step Four – Use a Vacuum Cleaner to Get Rid of Stubborn Residue

A good vacuum cleaner is going to remove most of the dirt and grime that may remain inside the keyboard. The best thing to do this with is a vacuum cleaner with a hose, but you could also use a regular one with a brush. Use it to clean the whole keyboard and use extra care for the areas between each key, which is where stubborn debris gets stuck.

Ensure that the keys aren’t loose. If they happen to come off, just pick them up, clean them, and put them back in place. Press it into place or snap to reattach it to the keyboard.

Step Five – Use a Cotton Swab and Rubbing Alcohol

Lightly moisten the q-tip so that there is not too much dampness under the keys. Then pass it around the keys to remove all the remaining dirt. Repeat several times as necessary until you’re satisfied with the level of cleanness.

Change the q-tip as they become soiled. If you use alcohol, it can erase the elements printed on the keys, which is why it should be kept away from those parts.

Isopropyl alcohol is very easy to dry, which makes it better than water. You can find it in most drugstores. However, you could also wrap a knife with a lint-free cloth.

Dampen it with rubbing alcohol and then scrub with it the grooves of the keyboard. This is a better option for mechanical keyboards that have raised keys.

Be careful if you want to clean a laptop. You can still use rubbing alcohol, but the delicate equipment on a laptop is directly underneath the keyboard, and you should not let any liquid drip under the keys.

Step Six – Use a Lint-Free Cloth to Wipe Away the Dirt

Use a microfiber cloth to avoid creating more dirt. Ensure that the cloth does not drip at all when dampening it. Then pass it on top of the keyboard to get rid of the remaining dust and other debris.

Don’t go too hard on the keys, or you may damage the printing. Be careful with the keys you use the most, as these parts tend to have more dirt, and they may need to be scrubbed several times.

You can also use a toothpick to clean very dirty parts. Hold it almost completely against the keyboard, then rub it to remove the dirt. Afterwards, you can clean everything up with rubbing alcohol.

Step Seven – Polish with a Cloth

Top everything off with one final cleanse with a dry cloth. Then, check it again to see if you missed anything. If it is still dirty, you may want to disassemble it for a thorough cleanse. When you’re done, plug in the keyboard and test it.

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About the Author

Hi, this is Beau. I am a full-time accountant and part-time writer, working with Clean Group for over six years now. I mostly work at the back end, managing the company accounts and keeping everything organised. Having been in this business for almost a decade now, I know how to successfully manage a cleaning business and bring profits without compromising quality and ensuring the best value of money for my customers. I also routinely participate in the process to create cleaning packages that are centred on customers’ needs and designed to be affordable yet profitable for the company.

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