How To Thoroughly Clean Your Dirty Desktop Computer

How To Thoroughly Clean Your Dirty Desktop Computer


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Identical to your automotive, your home, and even your physique, your pc wants a very good cleansing each as soon as and some time to stop mud construct up and overheating.  Cleansing a PC is straightforward to do and solely takes about 20 minutes, so immediately we’re going to cowl the right way to successfully clear the within of your desktop pc.

Editor’s Observe: This text exhibits how one can utterly clear every little thing inside the pc case. You don’t essentially should take away the RAM and video card in the event you don’t need to. We do advocate cleansing your pc regularly.

How typically ought to I clear my pc?

Relying in your surroundings, chances are you'll want to wash your pc kind of typically. Pc placement is one necessary variable. Protecting your pc on the ground permits for mud, hair, pores and skin cells, and carpet particles to get inside simpler. Should you maintain your pc above the ground—say, in your desk—particles are much less susceptible to getting inside.

For those who smoke close to your pc, tar, ash, and different gunk can construct up in your pc’s followers and on inside surfaces. Ridding your pc of this stuff each 6 months can improve your pc’s efficiency.

In the event you’re the proprietor of a pet that sheds, you may need to clear your pc extra typically. The within of your pc is simply as vulnerable to fur clogging followers and different areas of your pc.

Briefly, in case you maintain your pc off the ground, don’t smoke, and don’t have shedding pets, you possibly can in all probability get away with cleansing your pc as soon as per yr. If any of these issues do pertain to you, you may need to clear your pc each 6, and even three, months. And, as all the time, in case your pc begins getting hotter than normal, open it as much as examine for any mud or hair buildup after which clear it.


Don't open your pc whereas it's operating or with any cables hooked up to it. It's all the time safer to take away all peripherals comparable to USB cables, audio cables, video cables, and particularly the facility cable. Sure, holding the facility cable related does floor the PC and it’s typically okay to go away it related whereas working contained in the case. However, even the tiny hint of moisture from canned air may cause hassle if the elements are getting energy.

Subsequent, transfer your pc to a well-ventilated space resembling your yard or storage. That is particularly necessary to think about in case your pc has constructed up a number of mud that will probably be blowing round. Respiration all that previous, collected mud isn’t good for you and for those who’re in an enclosed area, the mud is simply going to settle again in your stuff—together with again in your pc.

In case you’re restricted on area simply you'll want to hold a vacuum (not for cleansing the within of the pc; extra on that quickly) close by for a fast clear up afterwards. And in case you’re fearful about inhaling mud, you'll be able to all the time cease at your native hardware cease to select up an affordable mud masks for lower than $5.

Collect Your Instruments

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Earlier than you start opening your pc’s case, you’ll want to collect your cleansing instruments. We extremely advocate not using a vacuum to wash mud off your pc elements. This could create a static buildup and will probably fry essential electrical elements in your motherboard, video card, and different locations. It’s only a dangerous concept, so spare your self the agony and decide up a compressed air can.

That stated, a vacuum can come in useful in case you’re dusting out your pc inside. Run the vacuum and maintain the hose close to—however not touching—your PC. Blow the mud out of the PC within the course of the vacuum hose, so the vacuum can suck most of it proper up.

There are a couple of instruments you will want to wash your pc:

  • Hardware set that features screw drivers
  • Can of compressed air
  • Cleansing material
  • Zip ties (non-compulsory)
  • Scissors (non-compulsory)
  • Cotton swabs (optionally available)
  • Thermal paste (optionally available)
  • Pencil or pen (non-compulsory)

One among our readers, Carlos, suggests utilizing a small paint brush to comb away mud the place compressed air simply can’t attain. A few of these instruments are non-compulsory, so don’t stress out in case you don’t have them. We solely had a couple of ourselves, and nonetheless managed to do a terrific job.

Open Your Case

Now that you simply’re in a well-ventilated space with all of your instruments gathered, we will begin the preparation course of by opening up your pc’s case. All pc instances are totally different. In the event you’ve by no means opened yours earlier than and are having hassle opening it, seek the advice of your pc’s guide or attempt looking on-line for guides particularly about your opening your mannequin.

The case we’re utilizing is a Sigma Luna WB, and, identical to most instances, all it takes is unscrewing two screws, after which sliding the side-panel outward. Notice that in case your aspect panel has an hooked up fan, you might have to disconnect an influence cables to get the panel utterly off.

To make the cleansing course of simpler, it’s greatest to take out any elements that may be simply eliminated. Most desktop computer systems assist you to take away RAM sticks, video playing cards, and onerous drives. You don’t want to do that, however you'll be able to clear extra completely when you do.

We advocate not eradicating your CPU as a result of thermal paste that's used to switch warmth from the highest of the processor to the fan must be changed each time the fan is eliminated. For those who are outfitted with thermal paste and need to take away your CPU, simply make sure to clear off the previous thermal paste in your CPU with rubbing alcohol and a tender material. Then apply a recent coat of thermal paste when you’re executed cleansing your pc.

Most individuals shouldn’t have to take away their CPU and CPU fan. It simply doesn’t make sense contemplating barely any mud makes its approach into the CPU socket. Then once more, should you’re cleansing your pc, why not go all the best way? The selection is yours.


To start out the cleansing course of, start with the peripherals we simply eliminated. Seize your can of compressed air and maintain the set off to launch a burst of air onto an space with a number of mud buildup. We’re cleansing an previous video card that by no means acquired plenty of consideration, so there have been some mud clumps accumulating across the DVI ports. When you’re cleansing a video card with a fan, you should use a pen or pencil to stop the blades from spinning when you blow the compressed air.

Subsequent, we transfer inside the pc case. Begin by eradicating any mud particles which will have discovered their method contained in the RAM slots. Take your compressed air can, purpose it at a RAM slot, maintain the set off, and transfer it down the whole slot. Repeat this for each slot in your pc case.

Now we’ll transfer onto the larger gear inside resembling your CPU fan and energy provide unit. Once more, it’s really helpful to make use of a pen or pencil when cleansing followers to stop the blades from spinning. Use your compressed air can to blow out any unfastened mud particles.

You can even use a cotton swab to wash the fan by rubbing the swab towards the blades to stay the mud particles. It’s somewhat tedious, however it makes for a pleasant, clear fan in the long run.

The underside of your case will undoubtedly have mud buildup. You'll be able to start with blowing the mud away together with your compressed air. If there's nonetheless mud caught to the case, you need to use a humid material to wipe it. Be sure your material is just not moist, however damp. Repeat this step for all of the nooks of your case.

Lastly, don’t overlook to additionally clear out some other followers, ports, or enclosures as described above.

In case you’ve obtained a fan that’s specific gunked up, don’t be afraid to make use of a cotton swab with a little bit of isopropyl alcohol to get the blades clear. Give the followers a fast spin to make it possible for the blades transfer freely after cleansing. In the event that they don’t, it’s in all probability greatest to go forward and substitute these followers.

Decluttering Cables (Elective)

This subsequent step is optionally available and is beneficial for customized constructed computer systems. In contrast to professionally manufactured computer systems, customized constructed computer systems don’t arrive with properly tucked away cabling that matches good. The easiest way to make your case safer and arranged is to make use of zip ties. You additionally don’t need your CPU fan or some other followers scraping away at cables in the event that they’re not neatly tucked away.

To start out you’ll want a pack of zip ties. It doesn’t matter what measurement or colour they're, so long as they will match round all of your cables. We’ll be utilizing Four-inch zip ties.

Start by disconnecting all cables that must be tied. You'll want to write down how they have been related for reference later and take footage.

When you've a cable or set of cables grouped to your liking, wrap a zipper tie round it and run the skinny finish by means of the fastener. Then tighten the zip tie by pulling the skinny finish till you possibly can not tighten it. Seize your scissors and minimize off the surplus.

Repeat this step for as many cables as attainable. You possibly can then tuck them away to scale back their visibility and provides your pc’s guts a cleaner look.

The Aftermath

Plug your cables again into their right sockets. Discuss with your doc or footage from earlier in the event you don’t keep in mind the place every cable goes. Additionally keep in mind to place again any eliminated peripherals, resembling a video card or sticks of RAM, again into their applicable sockets.

Your pc, in and out, must be wanting nearly as good as new. We’ve rid our pc of mud, hair, pores and skin particles, and far more. Your cables must be neatly managed and out of the best way of followers and different delicate gear. Should you have been having heating points earlier than, you’ll start to note that it’s factor of the previous. And don’t overlook to wash your pc each three to six months to maintain that efficiency up!