Options for Cleaning Keyboards


ScreenshotIs there anything more disgusting than a computer keyboard that’s been in use for a year? Between dust, shed skin cells, and random spills, I know mine end up looking pretty bad. Fortunately, there are some options for dealing with the problem, short of buying a new keyboard. If yours needs a buffing-up, try one of these ideas:

  • A gas duster (aka “canned air”) can quickly blow off the top layer of schmutz. You can also buy specialized computer vacuums, though honestly, I’ve never seen one that actually worked.
  • If you want to try a specialized cleaning product, 3M makes a keyboard cleaner kit designed to help get in between the keys. There’s also the biodegradable Cyber Clean compound, which bears a passing resemblance to the “slime” toys your kids (or you) might have.
  • For a more MacGyver approach, you can stick the bits of a keyboard in the dishwasher, though there’s some debate about this. I’ve happily used this method with the keys and case, though never with a whole, assembled keyboard.

Got any cleaning tips of your own to pass on?

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