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A clean computer in 3 easy steps

We do everything at our computers.

We eat, we drink, we file our fingernails. Occasionally, we will dust the monitor. And sometimes, if we're very, very good, we will wipe off the keys.

If you're thinking "What's the big deal about computer cleaning? Just spray it with a window product, right?" Wrong, laptop killer.

Never spray anything directly onto a computer screen. Some spray will get through vents onto the circuit boards.

And circuit boards are very finicky about being dropped in on by any liquid, especially strong solutions.

Here's how to get a clean computer in 3 easy steps.

  1   How to Clean Computer Laptop Screens

To clean your computer screen, start by turning off the computer. 

  • Don't just power down or put it in sleep mode; turn the power off.
  • Spray a screen cleaner onto a lint-free cloth.
  • Gently clean the screen by wiping it, taking care to remove any grime or fingerprints.
  • Refresh the cloth with glass product as needed.

  2   How to Clean a Keyboard

Science can't explain it, but soft drinks, crumbs, and coffee are attracted to computer keyboards.

Put them, and a kid or three in the proximity of one another, and they're bound to interact messily sooner or later.

Here's how to handle the inevitable mess on your computer keyboard when it happens: grab a can of compressed air!

  • Unplug the computer keyboard. There are enough shocks in family life; just do it.
  • Turn the keyboard over, and let it drain and dry for at least 24 hours.
  • If the spill was a sticky drink a cola or a latte, perhaps - try prying the small keycaps off the keyboard with a flat-head screwdriver to get better access to the mess.
  • Take a picture of the computer keyboard intact before you remove any keys. That way, you can put them back where you found them. Don't remove the space bar, the Enter key, or other large key caps, however. 
  • Gently wipe the computer keyboard with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol.
  • Carefully work off grimy gunk with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol.
  • Spray compressed airover the cleaned parts.
  • Thoroughly rinse the keycaps and allow them to air-dry. Replace the computer keycaps. Use your photo of the layout if needed.

  3   How to Clean a Mouse

Every time you roll the mouse, you are moving dust, dirt, and gunk into its innards. 

About once a month, you need to remove the gunk it to keep it rolling along. Here's how:

  • Unplug or turn off the computer mouse.
  • Open the back or underside and remove both the batteries and the ball.
  • Wipe away any grime from the ball with a damp cloth. Allow to air dry.
  • Gently wipe the inside of the computer mouse to remove remaining grime and build up, using a cotton swab moistened with rubbing alcohol. Allow to air dry thoroughly before using.

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› 3 Steps to a Clean Computer