Clean your dirty keyboard!

by techtiptom

Originally posted to on 06/06/2011

Think about how many times a day you touch your keyboard … ready to clean it yet?

Here’s what you will need:
A keyboard disconnected from a desktop computer, or a laptop keyboard
A flathead screwdriver
A bowl of warm water
Dish-washing soap
A towel
A can of compressed air
Cotton balls
Rubbing alcohol
A digital camera
A hand-held vacuum or upright vacuum with a hand-held attachment

Step 1: Shake keyboard

If you’re cleaning a laptop keyboard, remove the cord and the battery. Flip the keyboard upside down and gently shake it to dislodge any debris.

Tip: For future reference, take a photo of your keyboard before you dismantle it.

Step 2: Remove keys

Turn the keyboard right-side up and rest on a flat surface. Slide the tip of a flathead screwdriver under the bottom left key, pry it free, and soak in a bowl of soapy water. Repeat with the rest of the small keys. Leave the larger keys — such as the space bar, enter, and shift — since they’re harder to reattach.

Step 3: Clean and dry keys

Rinse the keys individually in fresh water and lay them on a towel to air-dry. Let the keys dry for 24 hours.

Step 4: Spray compressed air

Take a can of compressed air and spray the entire keyboard shell.

Tip: You can also run a hand-held vacuum over the shell.

Step 5: Dab with alcohol

Dip the end of a cotton ball in rubbing alcohol and run it along the board, making sure to reach all the nooks and crannies.

Step 6: Reassemble

When the keys have dried completely, reassemble the keyboard by snapping each key back into place.

Step 7: Keep it clean

Your keyboard looks like new! To help keep it clean, wash your hands before each use and never eat or drink while typing.