IT’S A TEDIOUS task you’ve been putting off for what could be years. But this is finally the weekend you do it; you’re going to clean your computer inside and out. That means scrubbing down those keys, wiping the fossilized fingerprints off your screen and deleting all the files that secretly downloaded when you were trying to figure out how to make a GIF.
You Will Need
- A microfiber cloth
- Soft cloths for cleaning (don’t use paper towels)
- Isopropyl alcohol
- An hour or two
Before doing anything, you need to turn off your device. Unplug it as well. This is the most important step. If you don’t follow it you could do some serious damage to the hardware.
Clean the Exterior
Take a soft cloth (a microfiber cloth is recommended), slightly dampen it with water and start scrubbing. Be careful when going around ports, you don’t want any liquid getting in there.
Start cleaning the screen by wiping it down with a dry cloth. Go from corner to corner.
Next, take the cloth and dampen it with some water. If you don’t think plain old water will get the job done, you could make a cleaning solution with 50 percent vinegar and 50 percent water. But don’t use cleaning solutions. In fact there are a lot of “Don’ts” when cleaning computers, so it’s best just to follow these instructions. Speaking of which, don’t drench the cloth. If it’s dripping wet, you overdid it.
Run the cloth over the screen. If you want to wipe in a wax on, wax off motion, that’s fine, but don’t get overzealous with your scrubbing; you’re not waxing a Ford Mustang.
If you’re a multitasking heathen who eats while using the computer… well, you’re just like everyone else. It also means you have crumbs between, on, or inside your keys. You need to get those out before you come in with the damp cloth—like sweeping the floor before mopping.
Use a can of compressed air to clear the crumbs from the surface. If you don’t have one, a small fan may work and if you’re really desperate, you could employ a drinking straw and use lung-generated wind power. Just get the crumbs out.
Next, take out a clean cloth, the isopropyl alcohol, and some Q-tips. Take the cloth and dampen it with the alcohol. Run the cloth over the keys and make them shiny. Then take the Q-tip and get in-between the keys. You can dip the Q-tip in alcohol, but stop short of a full soak; you don’t want a puddle of alcohol to spew out when you press down.
Once you’ve run the key maze, the alcohol should dry within a matter of minutes. Voila, you’re halfway done to completely cleaning your computer.
The inside of your machine is probably filled with more crap than the outside was. Boot your computer up and get ready to do the real dirty work.
Delete Files in Windows
Windows 10 comes with an excellent storage manager. In the Settings app, click on System, then Storage. In this view, you can identify the folders taking up the most space, then sift through these to delete the largest files you don’t need anymore.