How to Clean Your Keyboard

You are currently viewing How to Clean Your Keyboard

Having a clean and properly functioning keyboard is essential for an optimal typing experience. Over time, keyboards can accumulate dust, dirt, and grime, which can affect their performance and even harbor germs. Regularly cleaning your keyboard not only ensures its longevity but also promotes hygiene. In this article, we will guide you through the process of effectively cleaning your keyboard, step by step.

Why is it Important to Clean Your Keyboard?

Keyboards are used extensively on a daily basis, making them prone to collecting dirt, crumbs, and other debris. If left uncleaned, these particles can build up and interfere with the keyboard’s functionality. Additionally, keyboards can harbor bacteria and germs, which can pose a risk to your health. Regular cleaning helps maintain the keyboard’s performance, prolong its lifespan, and ensure a hygienic workspace.

Tools Needed for Cleaning

Before we dive into the cleaning process, gather the following tools:

  1. Microfiber cloth
  2. Compressed air can or a soft brush
  3. Isopropyl alcohol or disinfecting wipes
  4. Cotton swabs
  5. Water (optional)
  6. Mild detergent (optional)

Precautions to Take

Before cleaning your keyboard, it’s important to take a few precautions:

  1. Turn off your computer or disconnect the keyboard to prevent accidental keystrokes or damage.
  2. Read the manufacturer’s guidelines to avoid voiding the warranty or causing harm.
  3. Handle the keyboard with care to prevent any physical damage.

Cleaning Methods

1. Removing Loose Debris

Start by turning the keyboard upside down and gently tapping or shaking it to dislodge any loose debris. Use compressed air or a soft brush to remove stubborn particles from between the keys. Be careful not to use excessive force to avoid damaging the keys.

2. Cleaning the Keys

Dampen a microfiber cloth with water or a mild detergent solution. Gently wipe the keys one by one, paying attention to remove any smudges or stains. Avoid excessive moisture to prevent damage to the keyboard. For more stubborn stains, use a cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol.

3. Cleaning Between the Keys

To clean between the keys, you can use compressed air to blow out any trapped debris. Alternatively, wrap a cotton swab with a small piece of the microfiber cloth, dampen it slightly with isopropyl alcohol, and gently clean between the keys. Take your time and ensure thorough cleaning.

4. Disinfecting the Keyboard

To disinfect your keyboard, use disinfecting wipes or a microfiber cloth dampened with isopropyl alcohol. Gently wipe the entire surface of the keyboard, including the keys and the area around them. Let it air dry completely before reconnecting or turning on your computer.

Cleaning Tips for Different Types of Keyboards

Cleaning methods may vary depending on the type of keyboard you have. Here are a few tips:

  1. Mechanical Keyboards: Remove the keycaps for a more thorough cleaning. Refer to the manufacturer’s instructions for safe removal.
  2. Laptop Keyboards: Exercise caution while cleaning laptop keyboards as they are more delicate. Use minimal moisture and gentle pressure to avoid damaging the keys.
  3. Wireless Keyboards: Disconnect the wireless receiver or turn off the keyboard before cleaning to prevent any accidental input.

Preventive Measures

To keep your keyboard clean for longer periods, consider the following preventive measures:

  1. Wash your hands regularly before using the keyboard to minimize the transfer of dirt and oil.
  2. Avoid eating or drinking near your keyboard to prevent spills and crumbs.
  3. Consider using keyboard covers or skins to protect against dust and liquid damage.
  4. Clean your workspace regularly to minimize the accumulation of dirt and debris.


Maintaining a clean keyboard is crucial for optimal performance and hygiene. By following the step-by-step cleaning process outlined in this article, you can ensure that your keyboard remains in excellent condition. Regular cleaning, along with preventive measures, will extend the lifespan of your keyboard and create a healthier and more pleasant typing experience.


  1. Q: How often should I clean my keyboard? A: It is recommended to clean your keyboard at least once every three months or more frequently if you notice dirt or debris buildup.
  2. Q: Can I use soap and water to clean my keyboard? A: While water can be used in small amounts, it is best to avoid using soap as it may leave a residue or damage the keyboard. Stick to isopropyl alcohol or disinfecting wipes for effective cleaning.
  3. Q: Can I put my keyboard in the dishwasher for cleaning? A: No, submerging your keyboard in water or using a dishwasher can damage the internal components. Stick to the recommended cleaning methods outlined in this article.
  4. Q: How do I clean sticky keys? A: For sticky keys, use a cotton swab slightly moistened with isopropyl alcohol and gently clean around the affected keys. Avoid using excessive moisture.
  5. Q: Are there any alternatives to compressed air for cleaning between the keys? A: Yes, you can use a soft brush or a cotton swab wrapped with a small piece of microfiber cloth slightly dampened with isopropyl alcohol to clean between the keys effectively.