Like your house, your laptop needs a thorough cleaning now and again! Although you may not notice it immediately, laptops quite frequently gather up dust, dead skin cells, and food particles through use. How to properly clean your laptop and laptop’s screen is a vital skill to ensure that it lasts for a long while under your care.
We’ll be presenting you with 5 easy steps to fully clean your laptop like it’s brand new! Best of all, this should only take you about 15 – 20 minutes to complete so you can fit it into your busy schedule and make time to do it at least once every month or two.
Similarly, you can check out our guide on how to remove stickers from your laptop. But otherwise, let’s dive right into it!
What You’ll Need to Get Started!
Thankfully, cleaning your laptop doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to head to Walmart to pick up cleaning solutions. There’s a high chance that the household cleaners you usually use will be more than enough to bring a new sparkle and sheen to your device.
Here’s a basic rundown of what you’ll need to get started!
- A Microfiber Cloth. You’ll want to avoid using paper towels, toilet paper, or other cloth when cleaning your device. They are fairly inexpensive if you don’t have any and will be a worthwhile investment when you’re cleaning your laptop and other devices.
- Cleaning Solution. Make sure to avoid any harsh chemicals like bleach when cleaning your laptop. You’ll find chemicals like these will clean your laptop screen but may also damage them in the process. An at-home cleaning solution is to mix tap water/distilled water with dish soap in a 50/50 split, with some added vinegar will do the trick!
- A Can of Pressurized Air. For the particles of dust that have collected within the corners and crevices of your laptop, you’ll need canned air to effectively get them out. These cans are also quite easily available and do a wonderful job to remove stubborn dirt from your machinery.
- Cleaning Brush. Whether it’s a dental brush with bristles or an old toothbrush that you own, your job will be a lot easier if you have a cleaning brush. These brushes are extremely useful for getting in between the spaces of your keyboard and providing a deep clean for your device.
Those are the basic ingredients to cook up a new clean laptop, so make your shopping trip or grab them all from the cupboard before you begin reading about the 5 easy steps to clean your laptop.
5 Steps for a Brand New Look
Once you’ve got your screen cleaner, brushes, dry cloth, and the determination to give your laptop a brand new look, don’t waste any time and follow our 5 steps to renew the look of your laptop screen and laptop case!
Canned Air the Internal Components
Your very first step should be to use the canned air canister to remove any of the dust that has collected between keys, between joints, and inside the circuitry of your laptop. Make sure to follow the directions written on the back of the user manual canister to get the most out of your canned air.
Also ensure to keep the nozzle or spray a reasonable distance from the device – the last thing you need is to build up condensation in your device. Short bursts of compressed air are the best and most consistent way to safely clean your laptop. An important tip is that dust is quite commonly built up in a laptop’s internal components, so don’t forget to get these elements too!
Dust & Scrub your Keyboard Keys
After you’ve spent some time ridding yourself of the dust, dental brushes are the perfect cleaning agents to follow up with the canister. You can insert and scrap the various ports and keyboard keys.
For the most effective use of the scrubbers, you need to make sure to get around the edge of all the keys and twist the dental scrubbers in the ports using a series of circular motions. Just be careful not to scrub underneath the laptop keyboard too aggressively or in spaces that you need to force it into.
Clean the Touch Screen and Case
Once you’ve rid the laptop of the dust using the canned air and the bristles, we’ll cover how to clean the touch screen and the chassis or case of your laptop keyboard!
Take your dry microfiber cloth and dampen it with the cleaning product and solution you created, keep in mind that you should keep the cloth damp, not sopping wet. Take your damp cloth and gently wipe down the laptop case, but avoid cleaning the screen as we’ll be covering that later.
Gently clean the touch screen so that there are no fingerprint marks, which should be enough to remove the potential coffee stains on your laptop.
Wipe the Laptop Screen Clean
Our second to last step is to get your laptop screen nice and clean. Dampen the microfiber cloth and lightly wipe the screen, applying light pressure to gently rub the cleaning products.
LCD screen and nano texture glass is difficult to not damage so also ensure that your screen cleaning is delicately done. To clean your laptop screen more effectively, you can also use a tiny amount of cotton swabs to ensure that your screen is crystal clear.
Last but not least, it’s a good idea to future-proof your laptop by disinfecting it. Disinfecting it will allow you to not pick up any germs or bacteria that it may have picked up over many months of use.
We recommend that you disinfect your laptop screens with rubbing alcohol or isopropyl alcohol which can easily be applied with a cotton swab or clean cloth. Window cleaners aren’t a bad choice either!
What You Can Do To Keep Your Laptop Clean
Once you’ve done the elbow grease to clean your laptop and get it back to tip-top shape, there are a variety of ways to keep your laptop clean consistently and with less hassle than a full cleaning session.
An easy way to keep your laptop screen clean is to have your microfiber cloth on hand, and simply using water to clean the dust off your laptop will prolong the time you’ll need to fully clean your laptop.
Frequently Asked Questions
Hopefully, we’ve brought to you some of the best tips on how to clean a laptop, and give your device the same luster that it had when you bought it. You may have had some more questions while reading through our article, but don’t worry since we receive a ton of questions.
We’ve compiled the ones we see the most of into a handy frequently asked questions list for you to peruse.
What household product can I use to clean my laptop?
Dish soap, water, and a bit of white vinegar are some of the most praised when it comes to cleaning your laptop. If you’re looking for something to clean your laptop screen properly, you can’t go wrong with window cleaners like Windex.
Simply dap it onto your microfiber cloth and give your laptop screen a gentle wipe, removing any of the stains and annoying scratches that have been collected over the past couple of weeks. Whether your laptop is on the cheaper side or a brand new expensive model, you deserve to work on a clean laptop.
What can I use to clean my laptop surface?
There’s nothing that works better than a microfiber cloth to clean the surfaces of your laptop. You can pick up a microfiber cloth at your local mass markets store like Walmart or Target, for a pretty cheap price.
They’re great not just for laptops and make for excellent ways to clean your glasses or the glass surfaces of furniture like mirrors. And if you recently bought a laptop for work, there’s a high chance that you already have a microfiber cloth sitting around at home.
How do I clean the inside of my laptop?
Honestly, we could write an entire article just about the nuances of cleaning the inside of a laptop. The short version is that you’ll need to unscrew the bottom case plate from your laptop where all the contraptions are and use a canned air canister to blow out the dust that has collected.
This dust can be quite dangerous for your laptop as it will more than likely overheat your device more quickly and stop it from working as quickly as you’d expect it to. With some air, a screwdriver, and some determination, there’s a lot you can do to bring your laptop up to tip-top shape.
Now that your laptops are nice and clean after reading this article, we highly recommend that create a schedule to maintain this new look for your device regularly. Once you’ve started cleaning it more often, you’ll have to do less work each time!
Writer Graham Grieve brings two decades of technical communications experience to The Holy Tech coverage. Isaac contributes articles on laptops, tablets and PCs, alongside various software and hardware guides. Isaac is a former newspaper journalist who also worked in tech communications for some of the country’s biggest corporations. He also counsels and creates material for other technology publications and hosts a podcast.
Isaac’s in-depth reporting and knowledge of hardware and software issues helps The Holy Tech’s readers learn how to choose the right products, or solve tricky problems.