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Spring Cleaning, Part 1: Hardware

Spring is around the corner and what better time to implement a plan to ensure your hardware and software is crisp and clean and ready for action? Regular cleaning of your computer, laptops and other devices not only reduces bacteria buildup but can also help them work better.


University of Arizona researchers found that the average computer keyboard contains 400 times more bacteria than the average toilet bowl seat. Taking a few minutes each week to perform basic cleaning will help keep your keyboard (and you) healthier.

Clean hardware can help your computer run more smoothly and extend your computer’s lifespan, which can save time and money. Regular cleaning protects your investment and your data. When you wipe off the screen and empty crumbs from your keyboard, you’re helping your equipment perform better and you reduce the risk it will break down.


Here are simple actions that will make a big difference.


1. Wipe down your computer case at least once a week with a soft, dry cloth. For tougher jobs, use a mixture of mild soap and water.


2. Clean the screen with a microfiber cloth. Avoid using regular household cleaners that may damage a monitor screen. Instead check with your computer manufacturer for recommendations or try a natural method.


3. Clean the keyboard. Pick up your keyboard, turn it over, and gently pat it on the back to dislodge crumbs, stray hairs, and other tiny bits of dirt. If you’re having trouble removing sticky dirt, try using a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol.


4. Blow dust buildup out of computer vents, fans and accessories Every three to six months, consider using a screwdriver to open your computer’s exterior case. With a can of compressed air clean the dust buildup out of the fan and the case. Put the case back together and use cotton swabs to pick up any lingering dirt on the fan vents or other small crevices on the outside of the case.You also can use a few short bursts of this compressed air to dust out your keyboard and mouse

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