A dusty, crusty work station isn’t just unattractive, it can also prove detrimental to both you and your computer’s health. Dust and dirt can get caught under keys or inside mouse rollers affecting performance, and buildup on vents can block circulation causing your rig to run hotter than necessary. Furthermore, laptops and keyboards can harbor tremendous amounts of bacteria, spreading sickness when shared and prolonging illness when not. Therefore, with the cold and flu season just around the corner, today is the perfect day to take 10 minutes and wipe down your work area.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind for general computer cleaning:

  • Never eat or drink around the computer. We all know this is the number one rule, but let’s be honest; it’s also the hardest! Therefore, if you are going to eat or drink at your desk, try to keep food and drinks as far from the computer as possible so that if an accident does occur, you have time to stop spills before they reach any components.
  • Before cleaning, make sure the computer is turned off. If you will be cleaning the back of the computer, gently work around any connections making sure not to unplug or loosen them as you go.

  • Avoid using a vacuum to clean your computer. Vacuums tend to generate static electricity that can cause damage. Instead, try tipping the keyboard or other peripherals to gently shake free any crumbs or debris. Compressed air is very effective when a deeper clean is required.
  • Never spray or squirt any liquids directly onto the computer. Most cleaning can be done with a dry cloth or compressed air. If moisture is needed to remove previous spills or sticky residue, apply to a clean cloth or swab first. Use only water or rubbing alcohol, as other solvents may be bad for the plastics used with your computer.

Again, always be gentle when dusting and wiping down your computer and its components. It can be very easy to accidently adjust knobs and controls or loosen connections. Take your time, be careful and thorough. A cleaner and cooler computer is just a few minutes away!

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