Helping you balance your online life

Your Computer May Be Dirtier Than You Think

coffee keyboard 2

Question for you: Which do you clean more often, your computer or your bathroom?

If you’re like most people, myself included, you probably said your bathroom. Did you know that the cleanliness of your computer can affect how well it works? Clogged and dirty machines–both inside and out–can cause your computer to run sluggish and slow-w-w-w-w.

Tons of germs and bacteria live on your desktop computers and laptops, so we need to be just as vigilant about cleaning them as we are the bathrooms and other rooms in our homes. Follow these simple DIY steps for cleaning up and speeding up your computer and I think you’ll be happy with the outcome.


Supplies you will need include:

  • Clean coffee filter or dryer sheet
  • White vinegar
  • Purified water
  • Clean cotton rag
  • Blank sheet of white paper
  • Cotton swabs (like Q-tips)
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Compressed air (available at computer or office supply stores)
  1. Cleaning Your Computer Screen – For a quick clean-up of dust particles, grab a clean coffee filter or a dryer sheet and rub gently over the screen. Either one will do a good job without scratching the glass. If you need a deeper clean, mix together a solution of equal parts white vinegar and purified water in a bowl and lightly dip a clean cotton rag into the solution. Then gently wipe the screen for a streak-free deep cleaning to remove fingerprints and other gunk that builds up over time.
  2. Cleaning Your Mouse – Is your computer mouse slow to respond or not responding at all? It may mean there is too much build-up of dirt on the bottom of your mouse. To fix it, all you need is a clean, blank sheet of white paper. Unplug your mouse, and gently roll it across the sheet of paper up and down, side to side, and in circles for about one minute. Then, plug your mouse back in. Next, take a cotton swab and lightly moisten it with rubbing alcohol and gently clean the rubber pads and mouse buttons.
  3. Cleaning Your Keyboard – If you’re like many people, you eat and drink at work, and your sticky fingers or crumbs have done a number on your keyboard. Grab your can of compressed air and blow between the keys. Then, follow up with your cotton swab and alcohol; gently run the swab over the keys and all exposed areas of the keyboard; don’t pour the alcohol on the keyboard, and be sure not to get any drips in between the keys. Any fluid that gets inside the keyboard can be damaging.