- Nov 23, 2010
- 0 Comments
If you are like me and use your computer on a daily basis, do me a favor. Pick up your keyboard, turn it upside down, and shake it. You will be amazed at how much debris falls out. This is especially true if you eat at your computer, but even if you don’t there is going to be an amount of dirt and skin that fall out of it.
Very few people seem to clean off their keyboard at least once a month, and even less clean off their mouse. Bacteria get on to keyboards in a number of ways. A big factor is eating lunch at your desk. Dust is also a problem as it traps moisture, creating a perfect environment for bugs to breed. Did you know that your keyboard can have more germs on it than a toilet? If you eat around your computer, you can find even more little nasty’s lingering around your fingertips. Crumbs of food lodge between the keys and encourage the growth of bacteria. If you do not clean off your computer at least once a month, you might as well eat your lunch on the toilet.
If you still think that it is not really a big deal to clean off your computer, just know that your health in on the line. Here are some interesting things that have been found on keyboards through laboratory research.
Keep your machine clean … it could be harboring some nasty things
Here are some helpful tips on how to properly clean off your computer.
How Often Should I Clean My Keyboard?
To keep your keyboard in top condition the moderate cleaning could be done weekly, and the more thorough clean could be done every 2 months (depending on use).
How Do I Clean My Keyboard?
- Shut down the computer and detach the keyboard connector before any cleaning procedure.
- For a quick cleaning, turn the keyboard upside down and use a can of compressed air to blow out any crumbs. You could also use the hose of the vacuum cleaner or an electric hair dryer on high if you don’t have compressed air available to you.
- Clean the sides of the keys with a cotton swab or Q-tip dipped in rubbing alcohol.
- For a more thorough cleaning, remove all of the keys. Do this by gently prying up each key with a small screwdriver or a similar lever. When the keys have been removed, blow out any debris with compressed air. With a moist (but not wet) cloth, lightly swab all surfaces. Do not allow any type of fluid to enter the keyboard.
- Make sure that you either take a picture of your keyboard or go to Start>All Programs>Accessories>Accessibility>On Screen Keyboard so that you can see how all of the buttons go back on.
- Clean the individual keys and place them back in the keyboard.
What About Laptops?
It is not necessary to remove all the keys from the keyboard because the keys are very fragile and can break easily. Compressed air, rubbing alcohol, and Q-tips will usually do the trick.
- When spraying compressed air, do not turn the can upside down. Doing so can cause liquid propellant to spray into the keyboard and damage it. Also, be sure to use the compressed air in a well ventilated area.
- If you remove the keys, keep them away from small children or pets. Loose keys pose as a choking hazard.
- Do not inhale the contents of the compressed air. While it’s safe to use in a ventilated area, the concentrated contents are toxic and could injure or kill you.
Make sure to clean your mouse and mouse pad while you are at it. Make sure you turn off you computer and disconnect the mouse from the computer before cleaning. To clean you mouse, use Q-tips and rubbing alcohol. Gently clean around the buttons of the mouse with a damp Q-tip, and clean off the surfaces of the mouse with a clean cloth.
Of course there are other methods to cleaning your computer keyboard, so please feel free to leave a comment with your ideas.