Cleaning your Desktop computer for good

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Cleaning your Desktop PC


This document pertains to all HP and Compaq Desktop PCs.

This document tells you how to clean your PC, monitor, keyboard, and mouse. Dust, pet hair, and other particles can accumulate on or inside your desktop PC. These particles can scratch hardware components and they can build up, shortening the product life by causing overheating. Cleaning your desktop PC can make it last longer by getting rid of this potentially damaging buildup. It is recommended to inspect your system for cleanliness once a month as part of a regular maintenance program.

Before You Begin



WARNING:Before cleaning the PC and components, perform these steps to reduce the risk of electrical shock:

  1. Turn off the PC and monitor.
  2. Unplug the power cord from the PC and monitor.

Cleaning the PC

Periodically check the PC case for dirt and dust. Make sure to check the cooling vents and I/O ports for dust buildup. Use the following sections to clean your PC case.

Cleaning the PC Case

If the computer case has accumulated dust and buildup, follow these steps to clean:
1. Use a clean, dry cloth to dust the PC case.

Figure 1: Dusting the PC case

2. Use a clean cloth dampened with warm water to wipe it clean.
Figure 2: Cleaning the PC case

If sticker residue is present, use isopropyl alcohol or rubbing alcohol and a lint-free cloth to remove the residue.
Figure 3: Removing sticker residue
  1. Use a clean cloth to dry.

Cleaning the Cooling Vents

The cooling vents allow air to flow through your PC and help keep it cool. Buildup inside these vents impedes the cooling process. Use a battery-powered vacuum to remove dust and buildup from the vents.
Figure 4: Vacuuming the cooling vents
 Cleaning I/O Ports

The computer has a series of ports, usually in the back. Dust and debris can collect in these ports, reducing connectivity and performance. Use a battery-powered vacuum to remove any debris that has accumulated in and around these ports.
Figure 5: Vacuuming the I/O ports

Cleaning the Monitor

Periodically check the monitor for dirt and dust. Make sure to check the monitor vents and screen for dust buildup. Use the following sections to clean your monitor.
Cleaning the Monitor Case

If the monitor case has accumulated dust and buildup, follow these steps to clean:

1. Use a cloth dampened with warm water to wipe the monitor case clean. If sticker residue is present, use isopropyl alcohol or rubbing alcohol and a lint-free cloth to remove the residue.

Figure 6: Wiping the monitor case clean

  1. Use a dry, clean cloth to dry.

Cleaning the Monitor Vents

Your monitor vents allow air to flow through your monitor and help keep it cool. Buildup inside these vents impedes the cooling process. Use a battery-powered vacuum to remove dust and buildup from the vents.
Figure 7: Vacuuming the monitor vents

Cleaning the Monitor Screen

Use a clean, dry cloth to clean the monitor screen. For more thorough cleaning, use an antistatic screen cleaner and a clean cloth. Anti-static screen cleaning wipes can be purchased from many computer supply stores online at minimal cost.
Figure 8: Wiping the monitor screen

Cleaning the Keyboard and Mouse

It is recommended to clean the keyboard and mouse whenever you clean the computer and monitor.

Cleaning the Keyboard

Debris particles can accumulate between and beneath the keys of your keyboard. Gently use a battery-powered vacuum to remove debris particles that get between and beneath the keyboard keys. Use a low setting to avoid removing key caps and springs.
Figure 9: Vacuuming the keyboard keys
Use a clean, dry cloth and isopropyl alchohol to clean the buildup on the keyboard keys.
Figure 10: Cleaning buildup on the keyboard keys
 Cleaning the Mouse

If the mouse pointer on the screen stops moving intermittently or moves by itself, the roller ball and rollers inside the mouse probably require cleaning. Follow the steps for your type of mouse to clean the mouse.

Cleaning a Roller Ball Mouse

1. Wipe the body of the mouse and mouse cord with cleaning wipes or a cloth and cleanser.
Figure 11: Cleaning the mouse body
2. Follow these steps to clean the rollers and ball inside the mouse:
  1. Turn the mouse body upside down.
  2. The mouse roller is enclosed by a ball-cover ring. Rotate the ring counter-clockwise to remove the ring and release the roller ball.
    Figure 12: Removing the roller ball and ball-cover ring

    c.  Rinse the roller ball with soap and warm water.
    Figure 13: Rinsing the roller ball
    d.  Clean the rollers inside the mouse with a cotton swab dampened with isopropyl alchohol.
    Figure 14: Cleaning the mouse rollers

    1. Replace the roller ball and ball-cover ring.

    Cleaning an Optical Mouse

    Wipe the body of the mouse and mouse cord with cleaning wipes or a cloth and cleanser.
    Figure 15: Cleaning the mouse body

    2.  Turn the mouse body upside down.
    Figure 16: Bottom of the optical mouse

    3.  Clean the LED bulb and the surrounding area on the bottom of the mouse with a cotton swab dampened with isopropyl alchohol.
    Figure 17: Cleaning the LED bulb
     When finished, plug in your computer and monitor and turn the power on. Enjoy your clean system!






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