Whether it's from general use or a spilled drink, everyone needs to clean their computer keyboard from time to time. This is a guide to cleaning a computer keyboard.
Read and rate the best solutions below by giving them a "thumbs up".
You can purchase keyboards that will go through the dishwasher, or wash by hand. I don't have one, but you can also purchase a can of pressurized air with a long thin straw attachment to shoot a blast of air into the small spaces between the keys. It works quite well.
Source: Washable keyboards online or in local electronic stores.
By hopeful from OR
Take an old toothbrush and wet the bristles with vinegar, then press the bristles against a towel so the bristles are almost dry. Use the toothbrush between the keys gently, just like you would if brushing your teeth. A small paintbrush treated with vinegar the same way helps to get all the bits and bobs that come out. Wiping the keyboard with a cloth will just push all that garbage back. Be prepared to rinse off the toothbrush and go over the keyboard several times if you have not cleaned it before.
I use this method and it works much better than the canned air. The air is okay for getting off any dust that settles without pushing it into the keys but do not work well for a really good cleaning. The vinegar also acts as an anti-bacterial because keyboards are usually pretty well covered with germs.
Source: How Clean is Your House - thanks Kim and Aggie for all the wonderful cleaning tips
By Kathy from Dundee, Scotland
I found to my surprise that using cardboard from a toilet paper roll, about the size of a large paperclip, makes an excellent hair and debris picker-upper from off the keyboard.
When I worked in a pharmacy, we had several computers that were shared by all the staff within the pharmacy. At each shift change, one of us would go around with a paper towel that had alcohol on it and wipe down the keys. We were less ill after we started doing this and were very surprised with the grime that was picked up.
By Kathy from Forest Lake, MN
By Cheryl from Missouri
Editor's Note: Water has meant death to keyboards for me, so this method scares me.
I use tapered Make-Up Sponges Dipped In Fabulous 70% Alcohol To Clean Keyboards. Works for me.
By JK Finnell from Rifle, CO
I was reading about the different tips members have posted regarding how to clean their keyboards and I have one of my own. I use a moist Q-Tip all around and between the keys.
Then I use the crevice tool of my vacuum to suck up the dust that is left over. The key is to use the smallest, thinnest crevice tool. It's great!
By myrna from Bronx, NY
When my keyboard need cleaning (husband's coffee), I made a sketch of where each key belonged, and then gently lifted each key off using a wooden kabob stick. It was then easy to clean. I just clipped the keys back on, cleaning each one as I went. Only the space bar has a spring, but it wasn't hard to work out.
It's lovely to have a clean keyboard, and hubby now has his own laptop. I read somewhere on the net that most computer keyboards have more germs than a toilet seat.
By katesnanna from Brisbane, Australia
I use alcohol wipes, such as those used for wiping skin before giving oneself an injection for diabetes. They clean the keys and spaces between them really well. They leave no residue, and are economical.
Keep away from pets and children.
By VIETVET from Perkinston, MS
Dip an old toothbrush in nail polish remover and scrub debris from your keyboard. Make sure to shake out the excess nail polish remover before scrubbing the keyboard.
By Monica from Cortez, CO
Use your hair dryer on the cool setting to clean your computer keyboard instead of spending money on expensive canned air. Turn the keyboard upside down and blow the air up into it. I clean the tower (CPU) now and then as well. Dust and hair accumulate around the fan and vents can cause all sorts of problems, such as over-heating.
By Nancy C. from Los Angeles, CA
Reading the tip on cleaning a keyboard made me think of this tip. If you have a keyboard that seems dead or has too many sticky keys and you're about to pitch it, try this, it worked for me.
Place the keyboard in the dishwasher and run the dishwasher. When the cycle is finished, take the keyboard out, shake out any remaining water and dry with a towel. Lay the keyboard somewhere to finish drying (upside down).
DO NOT HOOK BACK UP TO COMPUTER FOR SEVERAL DAYS!
After three or four days, when you are sure the keyboard is dry, plug back into the computer and you may possibly have a working keyboard. I tried this on a couple of our keyboards and was able to salvage one - the one I'm typing on now.
Source: Back in the 70's I worked with very, very expensive computer equipment. My boss told me if I spilled soda on the keyboard to immediately rinse it with water.
By noella from Bolivar, MO
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Here are questions related to Cleaning a Computer Keyboard.
A technician pulled a lot of dust out of my son's keyboard, after his fan quit working. How do you clear dust out of your keyboard?
LanieGirl, in addition to the link and places PoorButProud posted, you can try in the computer section of the big box discount stores-that's where I got mine (WalMrat but I've also seen them in Target). I think I've seen them in drug stores, too.
@Deeli, LOL, my cats loved the feather duster and would chase it whenever I used it to tidy up around the computer. Little beggars shredded it one day. The vacuum on the other hand wasn't their favourite household cleaning device:)