Tech Tips – Cleaning Electronics

Spring Clean Those Electronics

By Kelly Brown

Spring has officially arrived! And if you’re anything like me, you have your list of spring cleaning chores all made up and are ready to start crossing off tasks one by one. Truthfully, I rarely make it through the whole list in any given year. Life just has a way of intervening and forcing its own agenda instead.

There are, however, some tasks that are important for the health of my family. Cleaning our household electronics. PCs are a HUGE dust magnet! Have you ever looked at the fans on those things?! They are usually chock full of dust and that doesn’t even hold a candle to the amount of dust you’ll find on the inside of the tower should you take off the side cover. Which is exactly what I do and so should you.

It’s a simple thing to do, just to slide the side panel off of the tower, after you have shut the PC down and unplugged it from the wall and unplugged any connecting wires. They do sometimes have a thumb screw that needs to be removed before the side panel will come off, so keep an eye out for that if you are having trouble getting it to cooperate with you. Then all you have to do is take the open PC outside into your driveway or yard and use a can of compressed air or an air compressor if you have one and blow all of the dust out of it. I recommend using a bandana to cover your face while doing this. It’s no fun getting an accidental mouthful of dust if you happen to hit a wrong angle with the compressed air!

I also recommend mixing yourself up a spray bottle of LCD cleaner. Plain water is an option for cleaning your LCD screens but the homemade mixture I use makes easy work of children’s greasy, grubby handprints. In any size spray bottle just mix 50% Isopropyl Rubbing Alcohol (70% is best) and 50% distilled water (so you don’t leave mineral deposits on your screens!). Then just give it a shake and you’re ready to go! This of course, is great to use all year long and it’s handy for other things too. I use it to clean the keyboard on my laptop and every single surface on my cell phone. It works well to clean landline telephones, satellite boxes, Blu Ray players, and any other electronic device you can think of.

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