cleaning laptop

Why it’s important to properly clean electronic devices

An important topic is how to keep our electronic devices clean and safe from any virus, bacteria, or other pathogen that could cause us harm. More now than ever we are relying on these devices to conduct our daily lives, from schooling to work, telemedicine, to staying in touch with our loved ones, and ordering basic supplies. We need these devices to work, and keep working, as we navigate the coming days, weeks, and months ahead.

Thankfully there are several safe and low-cost ways to do that.

In uncertain times we must remain calm and make good decisions. If faced with limited cleaning supplies due to stock outs we must be creative but ensure we are not creating hazards to ourselves, families, or devices when we work around the lack of safe cleaning agents for electronics.

Safety

Before we dive into device cleaning and care let’s cover some Safety Basics
Always power off the device before cleaning it to prevent shock and damage to the device.
Read all safety labels and instructions for correct use on all cleaning products before using them.
Use proper protective equipment when handling cleaning products.
Avoid mixing cleaning products together as certain products can have toxic reactions when mixed.
Force or strong pressure can cause damage to screens and break glass, use gentle pressure to clean your electronic devices.

be gentle
avoid mixing cleaning products

How to properly clean electronic devices

Do’s

Follow the manufacture’s recommendations if possible.
Be gentle- screens and smartphone screens can break if too much pressure is applied.
Use a microfiber cloth (a clean soft cotton tee-shirt will also work).
Use Cotton balls or cotton swabs (Q-Tips).
Clean them often, especially if shared.
Clean before transferring device back to work or school for service.

Don’ts

Don’t use paper towel or other paper products, it can cause scratching.
Don’t use bleach wipes.
Don’t use abrasive cleaning pads.
Don’t use caustic or abrasive cleaning products.

use proper cleaning products

How to clean your device

Laptop Screens

  1. Power off the laptop, unplug it, and remove the battery if possible.
  2. Gently wipe the monitor free of oils and dust with a microfiber cloth.
  3. Use a single drop of dish soap in a bowl of warm water.
    a. Dip the cloth until it is damp, not wet, and gently wipe down the screen.
    b. Rinse out the cloth, wring it out until it’s damp, not wet, wipe down the screen; repeat until the cloth rinses clear.
be cautious with screens

Keyboards

  1. Power off the keyboard, unplug it, and remove the battery if wireless.
  2. Use an alcohol swab or rubbing alcohol and cotton swab, or a microfiber cloth.
    a. Remember a little goes a long way. Avoid soaking the keyboard with rubbing alcohol.
  3. If you don’t have rubbing alcohol
  4. a. Use a single drop of dish soap in a bowl of warm water.
    b. Dip the cloth until it is damp, not wet, and gently wipe down the keyboard.
    c. Rinse out the cloth, wring it out until it’s damp, not wet, wipe down the keyboard; repeat until the cloth rinses clear
power off devices

Mice

  1. Power off the mouse, unplug it, and remove the battery if wireless.
  2. Use an alcohol swab or rubbing alcohol and cotton swab or a microfiber cloth.
    a. Remember a little goes a long way. Avoid soaking the mouse with rubbing alcohol.
  3. If you don’t have rubbing alcohol
  4. a. Use a single drop of dish soap in a bowl of warm water.
    b. Dip the cloth until it is damp, not wet, and gently wipe down the mouse.
    c. Rinse out the cloth, wring it out until it’s damp, not wet, wipe down the mouse; repeat until the cloth rinses clear.
mouse

Smart phones / Tablets

  1. Power off the phone / tablet, unplug it and remove the battery if possible.
  2. Remove any cover or case you may have on the phone or tablet
  3. Dip a cotton swab or cotton ball in rubbing alcohol and clean the touch screen
    a. If you screen is broken, you should use extra care to use light pressure and be careful not to get moisture under the screen.
  4. Use a damp cloth to clean any metal trim on the phone
    a. Use a single drop of dish soap in a bowl of warm water.
    b. Dip the cloth until it is damp, not wet, and gently wipe down the trim.
    c. Rinse out the cloth, wring it out until it’s damp, not wet, wipe down the trim; repeat until the cloth rinses clear.
  5. Cameras should be cleaned with a damp cotton swab without soap
    a. Dip the swab in water until it is damp, not wet and gently wipe down the camera lens.
    b. Immediately dry the camera lens with the other side of the cotton swab
cleaning phone screen