computer dust-free

It’s time to clean up around the computer area. You know this because all the signs are in place:

Moving your clogged-up mouse requires Herculean efforts (and large forearm muscles)
There are somewhere between eighteen and twenty-five paper-clip chains scattered on your desk.

Some wit has written WASH ME in the dust on the computer screen.

In the future, you’d like to spend less time dusting your monitor and more time looking at it. That’s possible entirely so and it won’t even cost you much money or time. Following one or more of these suggestions will make it easier for you to clean up the monitor, and might even decrease the number of times you have to do it every month (or year).

HOW TO SAFELY CLEAN YOUR MONITOR (so you have a fresh start when you begin preventive maintenance):

DO NOT OPEN YOUR MONITOR TO CLEAN INSIDE. Even if the component is unplugged, it can still store enough static electricity to make you wish you’d never even thought of taking it apart. If it needs to be done, take it to a qualified professional.

-A feather or wool duster is ideal for getting most of the dust off your monitor. These are inexpensive, and are easy to clean. Because they don’t have any harsh cleaners or other liquids that might damage your equipment, they’re safe to use around the computer.

-If you can’t get your hands on that, then a can of compressed air can help as well. Follow the label directions closely to prevent accidental damage to yourself OR the monitor.

-Dry dusting cloths can wipe off the majority of the dust and other collected deposits. Paper towels aren’t recommended because they tend to leave tiny fibers everywhere they go. That’s just making a bigger mess for you to clean up later.
Be sure not to wet the cloths, especially with harsh solvents like rubbing alcohol or bleach.

-If your monitor has lots of little crevasses and other annoying, hard-to-reach places, use dry cotton swabs. These can be used in the corners as well as to remove dust and dirt from the vent areas.

KEEPING DUST OFF THE MONITOR (or at least reducing the number of times you have to clean it every year)

-Forbid eating and drinking around the computer. These substances can be really bad for the internal electronics (motherboard, modems, etc.) anyway. But food crumbs get all over the place, and spilled soft drinks are welcome mats for dust and debris.

-Dust your entire computer setup at least once a week, if not more often, depending on conditions. If need be, you can dust it off every time you shut it down. It only takes a few moments, can save a lot of work later.

-Clean around your system as well. Frequent vacuuming and dusting in the rest of the room especially if it’s a high-traffic area will make the monitor less of a dust catcher. This is especially true if you clean everything at once, or use a duster that traps the dust instead of just spreading it around all over the place.

-Use computer covers when the system isn’t in use. Clear plastic covers can be slipped over every component, including the monitor, to prevent dust from building up and getting inside through the vents. Be sure that you aren’t blocking vents that are in use, which could burn up your equipment.

-Turn off the monitor when it’s not in use. They tend to attract more dust and particles when they’re on.

-Take note of how much traffic is going through the computer area. If you’ve placed your computer in the middle of the living room, it’s probably going to collect more dust than it would if it were placed in, say, the spare bedroom. The more foot traffic you have, the more dust and debris they’ll stir up. Consider moving your computer if the problem is very serious.

-Pay attention to the pets as well. Pet hair and dander make up a good portion of the dust in any household. If they frequent the computer area, you may want to make sure they’re groomed frequently. They less they shed, the less hair and dander you’ll have to clean up.

-Try not to decorate the desk area with objects that tend to make messes.. Limestone rocks, for example, are pretty but they look just as wonderful on, say, the windowsill on the other side of the room. The same is true of houseplants and stuffed animals.

You’ll still have to dust and clean the computer area sometimes. Hopefully, however, these suggestions will decrease the buildup and give you more time between cleaning sessions.

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