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What is the best way to clean your keyboard?

Old 08-11-01, 09:38 PM
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What is the best way to clean your keyboard?

I was enjoying some food and the forum when my dog decieded to bump me, and needless to say the keyboard has some food stuck in it. I don't want it to get ground in so...I was wondering what the best way to clean your keyboard is when you don't have a can of the pressureized air cleaner. Any suggestions.
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Old 08-11-01, 09:39 PM
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Re: What is the best way to clean your keyboard?

Originally posted by Skrulnik
I was enjoying some food and the forum when my dog decieded to bump me, and needless to say the keyboard has some food stuck in it. I don't want it to get ground in so...I was wondering what the best way to clean your keyboard is when you don't have a can of the pressureized air cleaner. Any suggestions.
1. Unplug.
2. Use wet wipes (or baby wipes).

Or you could always a new keyboard for free (or nearly free).
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Old 08-11-01, 09:41 PM
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there isnt really anything in there that water can bother.. you could toss it in a sink full of soapy water if you want.. you can take it in the bathtub with you.. you could put it in the dishwasher.. its mechanical, not electical (except of course the num lock, caps lock, and scroll lock lights)
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Old 08-11-01, 09:42 PM
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What about laptop keyboards? Since afterall I am the moron who decided to eat Apple Jacks while surfing. Milk + laptop = bad
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Old 08-11-01, 09:42 PM
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Originally posted by twikoff
there isnt really anything in there that water can bother.. you could toss it in a sink full of soapy water if you want.. you can take it in the bathtub with you.. you could put it in the dishwasher.. its mechanical, not electical (except of course the num lock, caps lock, and scroll lock lights)
... um ... NO! ...
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Old 08-11-01, 09:47 PM
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Originally posted by namja

... um ... NO! ...
sure you can.. i had a professor that insisted on this, and we thought he had lost his mind.. but he proved it several times that there is no problem with it.. and Ive done it several times myself..

seriously
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Old 08-11-01, 09:49 PM
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Important side note : Be VERY sure its dry before you re-attach it.
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Old 08-11-01, 09:53 PM
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Originally posted by ravan
Important side note : Be VERY sure its dry before you re-attach it.
well yea..
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Old 08-12-01, 03:28 AM
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Originally posted by namja

... um ... NO! ...

... um ... YES! ...

Dunking a (non-laptop) keyboard in water works just fine.

But getting a free replacement is my usual method of taking care of this type of hardware issue, as you initially suggested.

Last edited by spungeeman; 08-12-01 at 03:30 AM.
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Old 08-12-01, 03:31 AM
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Take the keyboard out to your workshop, turn on the compressor and let it get up to about 80psi , attach a small orifice sprayer to the hose and see how well it cleans out the particles (and the keys)...
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Old 08-12-01, 08:22 AM
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Originally posted by skuehl34
Take the keyboard out to your workshop, turn on the compressor and let it get up to about 80psi , attach a small orifice sprayer to the hose and see how well it cleans out the particles (and the keys)...
yea.. cause you know we all have workshops with compressors and small orifice sprayer attachments
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Old 08-12-01, 09:43 AM
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Turn it upside down and smack it on your desk a few times. That should dislodge any stray food between the keys.

If that doesn't work unplug it and go outside and grab the end of the cord and whip it around you in a circle. Make sure you are far enough away from trees, your dog and your house as you don't want to hit them with your flying keyboard. This method is fun, but can be dangerous.

Good Luck
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Old 08-12-01, 12:01 PM
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Out of curiosity, can you dunk a USB keyboard too???
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Old 08-12-01, 12:07 PM
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Canned air works great for me! I use it about once a month.

BTW dunking your keyboard in water is NOT a good idea! There are more than just mechanical parts! The keys make/break contacts which in turn are connected ELECTRONICALLY to your computer!

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Old 08-12-01, 12:54 PM
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I said "NO" because at my work, we get all these keyboards that were ruined when people spilled soda on it ...

but more importantly, Skrulnik, you only have ONE keyboard at home? I got like 3 spare keyboards in storage, all of which were free (one from an old computer, two were free from stores).
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Old 08-12-01, 01:15 PM
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soda is much different.. its all sticky and gunks the keys up

gotta love when our users accidently pour coke into their laptop keyboard
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Old 08-12-01, 02:06 PM
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Oh good grief, you guys should do cleaning of things in common-sense order.
  1. Vacuum stray bits up before using compressed air that can blow things deeper into the keyboard.
  2. Dampen (but not soak) paper towel with some cleaning agent that doesn't leave residue. Windex or other glass cleaners are good, but 409 leaves residue. Fold the paper towel in half twice which results in a squarish shape that is four layers thick. This 4-layer thickness gives enough stiffness and thickness to clean between the keys. Swipe the edge of the towel between the keys just as you swipe a credit card sideways in the long slot at the supermarket. Repeat this process as needed. Unfold and refold the paper towel to expose new clean surface.
  3. Dampen another paper towel and use this to vigourously wipe the keycaps (the keys). Take care to wipe the sloping sides of the keys.
  4. Unscrew the keyboard cover carefully. The screws are on the bottom and sometimes are hidden by the rubber bumpers on older keyboards. You are doing this so that you can clean the outer edges of the interior part of the keyboard. This avoids soaking the keyboard to dissolve gunk out.

WARNING: Many of today's newer keyboards have little circuit boards inside. The fiberglas fill of the phenolic boards can wick water into the board and it will take a long time to dry out. Thankfully, the voltage in a keyboard is low, so the leakage current due to wet boards usually is not a problem, although electrolysis might occur. Steel parts and screws inside may rust from the water, but of course this is inside where no one has to look at it (or is the wiser if you ebay the unit).
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Old 08-12-01, 09:25 PM
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Originally posted by twikoff


yea.. cause you know we all have workshops with compressors and small orifice sprayer attachments
Yeah, I got your small orifice spray attachment right here buddy.
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Old 08-13-01, 06:50 PM
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Old 08-13-01, 07:02 PM
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Just dunk it in some soapy water, that should do the trick.
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Old 08-13-01, 09:06 PM
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Originally posted by belboz


Yeah, I got your small orifice spray attachment right here buddy.
are you making a pass at me?
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