Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Possible Duplicate:
How do I clean dust from a computer?

I just read "Can Dust Actually Damage My Computer" by Jason Fitzpatrick, published 10/16/12. At the end of the article were related links, one being "How to Thoroughly Clean Your Dirty Desktop Computer".

Has anyone access to a "how to" article on cleaning dirty laptop computers? I would prefer advice that didn't include taking the laptop apart.

share|improve this question

marked as duplicate by soandos, Tom Wijsman, Journeyman Geek, Randolph West, 8088 Oct 19 '12 at 16:10

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

    
Most of the useful cleaning that could be done to a laptop (other than the obvious wiping the screen gently with a paper towel) involves taking it apart. Dust and food particles can accumulate inside, since the CPU/GPU fans in most laptop models directly expose the motherboard to the environment. Perhaps dust isn't an issue for systems without any active cooling (fans) or ToughBooks, but it's an issue for most consumer laptops. –  allquixotic Oct 19 '12 at 14:09
    
The real solution is don't eat near the laptop. This limits the need to get rid of dust which can be done without having to take the laptop apart. –  Ramhound Oct 19 '12 at 14:24
    
@Ramhound: You've got to explain me some time how food turns into dust... –  Tom Wijsman Oct 19 '12 at 15:04

1 Answer 1

Generally you can not properly clean them. Laptops are such closed cases that you have no proper access to the internals unless you take them partially apart.

Either do not clean them, or use a can with high pressure air to partially clean them, or download the maintenance manual for the laptop and dismantle it.

Note: MAINTENANCE manual, not the user manual.

share|improve this answer
    
This is false, on most laptops the fans are easily accessible once you remove the backplate(s). No need to take them partially apart. Not cleaning a laptop is a recipe for throwing your laptop away months later. –  Tom Wijsman Oct 19 '12 at 14:13
    
I'll change the 'generally you can not' to a 'Generally you can not PROPERLY clean them' though I guess whatever properly means differs per person. For me it also means blowing dust of heat sinks and removing the thin layer of dust on the PCB. As for a back plate: If you can remove that then that is great. The maintenance manual will show which screws you need to undo for that (and which not). But not all laptops have easy to remove back plates. –  Hennes Oct 19 '12 at 14:26

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.