Cleaning a Computer (HW)

Cleaning your computer is a very important task that should be done regularly to keep your computer in tip-top shape. Not maintaining the cleanliness of your computer internally and externally can result in a performance decrease or overheating.

Regularly cleaning your computer can improve performance and prolong the life of your computer.

Do’s and Don’t’s

Your computer is delicate and requires you to be meticulous. Using the wrong solvents or using the wrong tools can end up in a damaged component.


  • Use a pressurised air blower
  • Use a Microfiber cloth
  • Only clean parts that are relevant to cooling, such as fans, filters, and heatsinks
  • Be cautious and slow when cleaning


  • Use a vacuum cleaner
  • Use any cleaning solvents
  • Dismantle your computer to clean it. Taking the side panel off is fine
  • Aggressively clean your computer or attempt to remove every last piece of surface dust

Cleaning your computer

First you’ll want your computer to be completely off. You’ll also want to be in an open area where it is well ventilated (outside or garage is a good example). Then you’ll want to tape down your fans, ramping them up with the pressured air can damage them and can shorten their lifespan, don’t apply a crazy amount, a peel of office tape is gentle enough and can hold down the fans.

When blowing pressured air in your computer you’ll want to do it in short bursts (applies especially to pressurized canned air). If you’re using a air compressor make sure that the PSI isn’t too high. Get as close as you can to the component without poking it. You’ll also want to pay special attention to the heatsink fins as they can house dust.

Finally we can clean the fans. Using the microfiber cloth, we can gently wipe down the fins and get rid of residual dust.

Maintaining the cleanliness and efficacy of your computer

Making sure your computer is maintained well is determined by your environment. Placing your computer in the floor, smoking around your computer, or not keeping the area around your computer clean are contributing factors that will advance the maintenance period of your computer.