How To Clean A Dusty Computer (Step-By-Step Guide)


Physically cleaning your PC is as essential as keeping your hard drive free for the latest game updates. So today I am going to show you how I like to keep my system free of dust. This channel is supported by my personal pocket book so if you?d like to help me out, just like and subscribe I really appreciate it. To those who commented, liked and subscribed to my last video the 3080 launch, thank-you very much I really appreciate it. Why would you need to clean your PC? Well, to impress your mother of course and to let her know that you are an adult. Officially. Seriously , it?s for aesthetics for the most part. This is subjective of course and some people don?t care about that and that?s okay. Personally I like a clean PC.

Mainly because my system is in my living room and it?s on display. THe second reason is a bit more serious, and that?s to help keep your PC cool by keeping the airflow as high as possible and 3, tied to 2, most seriously, to help prevent ungodly dust buildups that can keep your components from cooling and can actually cause fatal shorts. It?s rare, but it?s possible. Speaking of dust buildups I was inspired to make this video after seeing the state of my sisters PC.

This was actually my first proper desktop gaming PC I built back in around 2008 – 2010. Basically my brother picked all the parts and showed me how to put it together. It?s not in terrible shape but it?s not great. I mean I?m quite anal about dust in my PC so even today you may not see that much dust. I wasn?t willing to let it go much longer so just bare with me.

Tools So what you will need is a source of air. An air can, an air compressor or a purpose built electric duster. Some of those actually come with an anti static wrist straps and bristles. I?m sure you can find them cheaply online but I think most people will use a can, so that?s what I will use today. Micro-fiber cloths. These are excellent for getting rid of dust. Paper towel will also do. For the tighter spots, cotton swabs are what you need. Keep a few of them handy. Get yourself some surface cleaner. I like to use window cleaner. It?s especially good for tempered glass and those side panels that are notorious for attracting finger prints. Make sure to grab any tools you might need to remove parts of your system. Typically a phillips head screwdriver, screwdriver, screwdriver is enough. Lastly, grab a mask and some safety glasses if you have them.

You don?t want to breathe in the crap that?s built up in there. Once you have the essentials, you are ready to go. First thing you want to do is make sure you?re in a well ventilated area. You don?t want the dust flying around your house. Outside will do for most. Just make sure it?s not raining of course. Take apart the chassis. Remove the side, top and front panels along with any filters your case might have and set them aside for now.

A few tips before you start blowing air is to not get too close to your components. It is possible to damage parts of the motherboard or the fans if you let them spin too fast. You can damage the bearing or even cause the blades to break off. If you?re using an air compressor be sure to keep the pressure low. And if you?re using a can like myself be sure not to shake it or turn it upside down and if you feel the can getting cold, just give it a minute to warm back up.

Start by spraying off your components beginning at the top and working your way down. Try and keep the air source 10-20cm away from your system to avoid damaging any fragile parts. But something more robust like fins of your radiator can withstand much closer bursts of air. Clearly not taking my own advice of keeping the can upright. If you see any dust coming out of a radiator that is in a push configuration like mine, It would be a good idea to remove the fans to get at the rad.

You don?t want it to get built up. Just look at some of these ones, disgusting. Just nasty. You can remove components if you want, like the GPU but that’s not needed for regular maintenance. My GPU could use a little extra cleaning so I am going to take it out. If you want to do a deep clean. You can remove everything, even the motherboard. Set them aside AFTER blowing out most of the dust and then go over the entire chassis with a microfiber cloth. Grab a bottle of your favorite cleaner and wipe it down. Once it?s dry you can re- assemble everything. In my case things weren?t too bad so I only removed the GPU. You can see here that the thermal pads have separated slightly from the PCB. probably from sagging. Not a good thing. Give some loving attention to your fans and they will love you back. If you see any buildup of dust and grime on the fins take a cloth and wipe them off.

Well that rhymed. The cotton swabs will be your buddy here in reaching those tight spots. Next is the power supply. This is a tricky component to clean and if left for a long time can accumulate a huge amount of dust which can cause the unit to overheat. Just blow some air through the back. If you see a large amount of dust coming out of the fan intake it might be a good idea to remove the PSU from the chassis and take it apart to get at the dust. Once you?re satisfied with the state of the chassis, set it aside and grab the side panels and filters. Blow off the dust from the filters and give them a wipe down.

Wipe down the panels with the cloth and use the surface cleaner to remove dust, smudges and fingerprints. At this point you can reassemble everything. Give it one more external wipe and You are good to go. Job well done. Now that your PC is clean you might be wondering how often you need to actually do this? Ultimately that?s up to you. It?s going to depend on several factors like where you keep your PC? Near the floor or up higher up. Do you have pets? Do you smoke? I don?t have the best anti dust setup. My PC is on the floor but at least it?s hardwood. Don?t put your PC directly on a carpet if it has bottom intake. Try to lift it off with something. Clean floors help as well. I have a robot to help me with that. If you want optimal airflow with no filters then you?re naturally going to get more dust in your system and a regular monthly clean would be a good idea. At the cost of less airflow you can use filters like myself. You might clean the filters once a month and the whole system every 2 or 3 months.

It?s really up to you. Just check back on it once in a while. The more often you clean it the better it will perform and the easier each clean will be to clean it each time. So that?s it that’s how you clean your PC. I hope these tips have been helpful for you. This has been Tech Illiterate. Thanks for watching..

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