clean a computer keyboard without removing the keys
What's the best method to clean my laptop keyboard without pinging the keys off?
I've looked at USB vacuum cleaners, and keyboard-cleaning goop that you push onto/around the keys. But none of the products I've looked at have earned particularly good reviews.0
Cyber clean is pretty good.
The smutz that gets in under the keys is where the bad germs live. There would seem to be limited options. I have found that basic office kayboards are cheap and dependable enough to just replace when they get dirty. Alternatively (and I have not tried it),boingboing long ago recommended putting the kayboard in the dishwasher. Once well dried out, apparently they can be as good as new. http://boingboing.net/2005/05/30/clean-your-keyboard.html
It won't get under stuff, but rubbing alcohol on a small rag will clean the screen and keyboard of fingerprints and general dirty smears.
I keep my keyboard protected with a moshimonde.com keyboard cover. THey're very thin, very flexible, and highly durable. The covers last for about two years.
The covers do accumulate oils from your hands. If you keep a little microfiber towel handy, that cleans off most of the oil. I wash the cover once a day or so. They're a bit hard to clean; I use foaming soap with warm water. Lather, rinse, repeat, and then let it drip dry.
The moshi covers are for MacBooks. I'm guessing that covers exist for PC laptops, but I don't know who makes them, or which ones are good. The thickness/flexibility of the covers is very important. One of the brands for Mac computers was very thick and felt yucky to type on. I recommend trying a cover before you buy it if you can.
If you've got a flexible silicone keyboard like this -- http://www.ebay.com/itm/USB-Silicone-Roll-Up-Foldable-Flexible-PC-Computer-Keyboard-MAC-FULL-SIZE-Pink-/170723558051 -- as one of my computers does, you just unplug it and go hose it off in the yard. (You also make a lot of typos due to the not-so-great key mechanisms, but oh well!)
For other types of keyboards, I have this set of a long narrow hose and tiny brushes that you can hook up to a standard vacuum cleaner hose -- I got them decades ago and the place I got them from doesn't seem to carry them any more. That plus some spot cleaning with a washcloth dampened with a little water and some drops of dish soap.
Though depending on what your keyboard/key mechanisms are like, and how dirty they are, yeah, taking the keycaps off and washing them one by one can make a big difference in how nice your keyboard looks.
Canned air. You'd be amazed at what that gets out from under regular keyboards. Combine that with a swipe with an alcohol wipe, and you're good to go.
If you have a regular desktop, you can put the keyboard in the dishwasher. I KNOW THIS SOUNDS NUTS. But it really works. Just wrap the cable around the keyboard and put it on the top shelf. Run a regular cycle, with drying, and then let it rest in front of an air conditioner for a couple of days.
I SWEAR I am not yanking your chain.. It really works.
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