Make your digital lifelines to the outside world spotless and germ free.
My ‘H’ key was sticking…which got me to take a hard look at my laptop keyboard. I am too respectful of you to describe it, but crumbs and grimy would be two words I’d have to use. Suffice it to say, I have made an oath to avoid eating anywhere near my computer. My keyboard should be an inspiring, spotless, safe place – so I have cleaned and disinfected it.
Here are the steps and products to clean your keyboard.
- Turn off the laptop and unplug it.
- Remove large crumbs by turning the laptop or keyboard upside down and shaking it gently.
- Use the OXO computer brush ($5.99) to remove dust and particles from between the keys. Get help from gravity by turning your keyboard upside down while you brush it. This will help you avoid pushing particles under the keys – those particles might make YOUR keys stick.
- Blow. If your keyboard needs more than simple brushing, this disposable canister of compressed air will blow away loose particles. Electronics Compressed Gas Duster, $8.87.
This simple dust blower is an alternative to the compressed air. $8.59.
If your hair dryer can be set to blow cold air, you can use it on your keyboard.
- Get rid of the smudges. Liquid is the enemy of computers, so avoid using soggy cloths. This pack of seven, 6” x 7” Microfiber Cloths will clean your keyboard and screen – then move on to your glasses, iPhone and camera lens, $6.99. You can dampen the cloth very slightly and wipe off the keyboard keys.
- Swab with Alcohol. For stubborn spots, use Q-tips dipped in Isopropyl Alcohol or these pre-moistened, individually wrapped Key Cleaning Swabs. 24 swabs for $16.69.
- Get rid of the germs. Now that your keyboard is clean – time to disinfect. Here are instructions from Apple.
Using a 70 percent isopropyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes, you may gently wipe the hard, nonporous surfaces of your Apple product, such as the display, keyboard, or other exterior surfaces. Don’t use bleach. Avoid getting moisture in any opening, and don’t submerge your Apple product in any cleaning agents. Don’t use on fabric or leather surfaces.
- Vacuum. For you extreme cases who have been eating Cheetos while typing your memoirs, there is help. You can use a USB powered vacuum. Some keyboards have keys which pop-off, so avoid using a powerful home vacuum. Cordless, rechargeable keyboard vacuum. $15.99.
- Slime/Gel. This keyboard cleaning gel (slime) is described as ‘not sticky’, but it does have a sweet, lemon fragrance. Five individually wrapped gels, $10.99
Ultra thin keyboard covers protect your keys before the problem starts. Make sure that the product mentions your laptop or keyboard – fit is important.