How To Clean Your Electronics the Right Way - Home & Texture
Cleaning Cleaning Electronics

Yes, You Should Be Cleaning Your Electronics—Here's How To Do It Safely

Keep your tech dust and dirt-free.

May 6, 2024 at 9:20 PM PST
Cleaning Cleaning Electronics

Yes, You Should Be Cleaning Your Electronics—Here's How To Do It Safely

Keep your tech dust and dirt-free.

May 6, 2024 at 9:20 PM PST

A clean and tidy home is one thing. But these days, more and more of your furniture and other items require a power connection to create the smart home of your dreams. Keeping your electronics pristine is a whole other scenario that requires a careful eye and hand. But, they can’t be ignored, since dust and dirt can accumulate and damage internal parts or compromise their performance. Here are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind when cleaning your electronics.

But First, What Not To Do

Usually, the golden rule for cleaning electronics is to keep them away from moisture. But, it’s not always that simple.

Be careful when spraying.

Excess liquid can seep into your device’s delicate components, causing irreversible damage. But there is a right and wrong way to use cleaning solution. Instead, always apply cleaning solutions to a cloth first, then gently wipe your device.

Photo credit: Grace Cary

Be careful about scratching.

Abrasive materials like paper towels or things like magic erasers can be problematic to cleaning your electronics. These can leave behind tiny scratches on your devices’ delicate surfaces and damage their sleek appearance. Stick to soft, microfiber cloths to keep your gadgets looking flawless.

Watch for harsh chemicals.

Remember that your electronics are delicate creatures that prefer gentle, chemical-free cleaning solutions. Avoid using harsh chemicals like bleach, ammonia, or alcohol-based cleaners, as these can strip away protective coatings and damage sensitive components.

Don’t forget the no-go zones.

Some areas of your device are strictly off-limits when it comes to cleaning. Avoid getting moisture near openings such as speakers, ports, and vents, as this can lead to corrosion or electrical shorts. And whatever you do, never attempt to disassemble your device for a deep clean — leave that to the professionals!

Now, for the How To

Always power down.

Before you even start cleaning, always unplug your device before giving it a spa day. This is, first and foremost, for your own safety, but also for protecting the integrity of the device, especially if you’re using a liquid solution. Also, make sure that your devices have a chance to cool down before you get to cleaning. The last thing you want is the heat from a television or computer burning the solution—or your hands.

Get rid of the majority of dust bunnies.

For most devices, you can get prepared by grabbing a soft, dry microfiber cloth and gently wiping away the dust that has made itself comfortable on your screen and keyboard. If you have a duster available, that can do the trick as well. Just make sure you have the kind that traps dust in its fibers, so you’re not just spreading it to the next surface once it settles.

Photo credit: Grace Cary

Handle your keyboards correctly.

Let’s be real, accidents happen. A rogue coffee spill or a sprinkle of cookie crumbs can accidentally make a second home in the crevices of your computer or laptop keyboard. This is where a keyboard cleaner comes in handy. It’s basically compressed air in a can, and when you press the nozzle, it will blast out dirt, dust, and other debris lurking in the spaces between your keys. Another way to go about cleaning this area is with keyboard gel or keyboard putty. This squishy, jelly-like substance is like a magnet for dirt and debris, making it perfect for cleaning those hard-to-reach crevices in your keyboard.

Just press the gel onto the keys and watch as it molds itself to the contours of your keyboard, picking up particles and crumbs along the way. It’s oddly satisfying and incredibly effective. If you have more stubborn stains or sticky keys, bring in the microfiber and all-purpose solution to wipe them down, being careful not to drip the solution on the keyboard.

Keep your ports clean.

Don’t forget to show some love to those often-overlooked ports and connectors. Because they’re so small, they can accumulate particles that love to hide in tiny spaces, causing potential connectivity issues down the line. Grab a soft-bristled brush (a clean makeup brush works too) and gently sweep away any lurking particles.



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