Although many companies have created products to help improve the process of cleaning your computer and peripherals, users can also use household items to clean their computers and peripherals. Below is a listing of items you may need or want to use while cleaning your computer or computer peripherals. Keep in mind that some components in your computer may only be able to be cleaned using a product designed for cleaning that component; if this is the case, it will be mentioned in the cleaning tips.
• Cloth – A cloth is the best tool used when rubbing down a component; although paper towels can be used with most hardware, we recommend using a cloth when ever possible. Caution: We only suggest you use a cloth when cleaning components such as the outside of the case, a drive, mouse, etc. You should not use a cloth to clean any circuitry such as the RAM or motherboard since they can generate ESD that can damage electronics.
• Water or rubbing alcohol – When moistening a cloth, it is best to use water or rubbing alcohol. Other solvents may be bad for the plastics used with your computer.
• Portable Vacuum – Sucking the dust, dirt, hair, cigarette particles, and other particles out of a computer can be one of the best methods of cleaning a computer. Over time, these items can restrict the airflow in a computer and cause circuitry to corrode. Do not use a standard vacuum as it can generate a lot of static electricity that can damage your computer.
• Cotton swabs – Cotton swaps moistened with rubbing alcohol or water are excellent tools for wiping hard to reach areas in your keyboard, mouse, and other locations.
• Foam swabs – Whenever possible, it is better to use lint-free swabs such as foam swabs.