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Q: How do I clean my laptop?


Here's how to clean your laptop in 6 easy steps.

You will need

  • A solution of equal parts isopropyl alcohol, and distilled, purified, or bottled water A lint-free or 100% soft cotton cloth
  • A can of compressed air
  • Cotton swabs (optional)

1. Prep

  • Turn off your computer and unplug it
  • Mix your solution of isopropyl alcohol and water
  • Dampen (don't drench!! squeeze out excess!) your cloth with the solution - never spray or pour solution directly into your machine

2. Clean your laptop exterior

  • Use the damp cloth to clean both the exterior of your laptop when it is closed and the area around your keyboard and screen when it is open

3. Clean the LCD screen

  • Use the same dampened cloth (or a fresh one if the first is too dirty) to rub gently in circular motions from left to right, top to bottom of your screen

4. Clean the ports and cooling vents

  • Spray the can of compressed air at an angle (keep the can upright!) into the ports and cooling vents of your laptop, being careful not to spray too hard resulting in liquid in your device

5. Clean the keyboard and touchpad

  • Use the can of compressed air to clean your keyboard. The compressed air will loosen and remove any debris that is stuck in between and underneath your keys
  • For very dirty keyboards, if it is safe to do so for your model of computer (check your manual!) you can remove the keys, dip a cotton swab into your cleaning solution, and wipe underneath the keys
  • Use your damp cloth to wipe the keys and the touchpad. You can also use a cotton swab dipped in cleaning solution to clean your keys

6. Dry time

  • Make sure your computer is completely dry before turning it back on

For more help, contact IS&T at

IS&T Contributions

Documentation and information provided by IS&T staff members

Last Modified:

May 02, 2017

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