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How to clean your laptop

It’s no secret that our electronics are swimming in bacteria. It seems as though new stats comparing your track pad to a toilet seat come out every day and, with so many people working from home, our laptops are only getting more use. 

But keeping your laptop clean can be intimidating. After all, you’re putting chemicals to a £1000+ piece of kit. And, how often do you need to clean it? Trusted Reviews has gathered all the info you need on how to clean your laptop safely and effectively.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released guidance on how to take care of your electronics during the Covid-19 outbreak but they’re pretty bare bones.

“Consider putting a wipeable cover on electronics”, wrote the CDC.

“Follow manufacturer’s instruction for cleaning and disinfecting. If no guidance, use alcohol-based wipes or sprays containing at least 70% alcohol. Dry surface thoroughly.”

Related: Best laptop

Some companies, such as Dell, have shared their own guidance online. Dell recommends that users wear disposable gloves when disinfecting their laptops and remove batteries from items like wireless keyboards before they begin.

Most companies advise you clean your laptop on a regular basis to help keep germs and dust at bay. It is especially important that you keep an eye out for dust as allowing this to build up over time can actually slow down your laptop in the long run.

Related: Top tech hacks to stay healthy and sane when working from home

Here is our step-by-step guide on how to keep your laptop, keyboard and display squeaky clean.

  • Turn off your laptop, unplug your charger and, if possible, remove the battery
  • Brush off any crumbs and carefully flip the laptop upside down to dislodge dirt
  • Using canned air in quick bursts, clear any dust from the keyboard, vents and ports
  • Dampen a microfibre cloth with 70% or above isopropyl alcohol and ring out any excess. You don’t want any water dripping into your laptop.
  • Wipe down the surfaces, including the track pad, keyboard and exterior of the laptop. You might find a cotton swab handy to reach between the keys.
  • Wait until the laptop is completely dry before switching it back on

You’ll want to avoid using anything harsh such as glass cleaner – on your laptop display. HP advises not to use rubbing alcohol to clean an LCD screen as this can damage your display. It is always best to consult your manufacturer or manual for a list of products to use or avoid before you get started cleaning your device. 

  • Wipe down your screen using a dry microfibre cloth
  • To remove stubborn stains, add a small amount of isopropyl alcohol diluted with water and rub gently in a circular motion

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