You probably have wondered about how to clean a mechanical keyboard if you ever had or using at the moment a mechanical keyboard. Mechanical Keyboards are GREAT innovations that definitely changed the lives of us gamers for good but it also comes with its responsibilities too!
It appears that they get dirty by time with no cleaning and many sessions of dining in front of the computer.. We all have been that person who eats against the computer, no need to be ashamed, we’ve all been there 🙂 But the thing you can do is to clean your keyboard on a constant interval of time to prevent any malfunctions or zombie viruses spreading..
And by the way, here is a fun article about computer eating, click here to read it!! But if you still want to eat at your computer desk, that's fine, we're going to tell you how to clean your keyboard after all, BUT here's a great article about food and computers too, click to read : What are the best foods and strategies to eat at your computer??
So, let’s get STARTED!! Here are the reasons to clean our mechanical keyboards:
- Prevent future malfunctions because of dust and dirts between the mechanical switches.
- Make your keyboard function better and keep keys functioning properly.
- To maintain general hygene.
Keyboard is one of the places that we interact the most during our computer sessions and we don’t probably even notice how bad hygene maintenance inside a keyboard is going on. It can become an actual hive for germs and bacteria and you’re touching it thousands of time!!
And it’s obvious that all the dirt and dust and etc.. stored and stucked inside the keyboard will eventually lead up to buttons stucking or not pressing properly at all. That’s why I’ve written down the BEST PRACTICES that will keep your keyboard safe and functioning for a long time!! Here are the things that you should do to keep your keyboard healthy and shiny:
HOW TO CLEAN A MECHANICAL KEYBOARD??
There are 3 best practices that you can apply to keyboard and 2 of these are methods that you can execute on a constant basis to keep your keyboard ALWAYS like the first day unpacked:
- Cleaning Putty (Constant Maintenance – Great Product For every Electronic Item!!
- Deep Cleaning with Un-Assembly method ( Takes much more effort but needs to be done at least once in a long time interval)
- Ever tried the “Washing Machine??”
About the “Washing Machine” part I’m not dead serious but there are people doing the Washing Machine Way too and I will talk about it at the end of this article, so stay tight!!
We’ll first talk about the more “conventional” and safer best practices which are practiced by many gamers around the globe. Here’s the first and my favourite one:
The Epic Cleaning Putty!! – Always Clean
There’s an actual product which definitely helps you keeping your electronics clean constantly without effort!! It’s a GREAT invention and actually makes the whole cleaning process easier without all that disassembly works and buttons flying around.. It can be a frustration dealing with all the buttons spread over the desk while cleaning, and if you don’t want to get your hands dirty, you can always use the “Cleaning Putty”.
But here’s my advice: Don’t use it on an extremely dirty keyboard, it will help but the putty will lose its effectiveness and will come to an end of its lifespan way earlier. It’s meant for “General Housekeeping” of your electronics and it’s meant to be used frequently (Max 1-2 times a week) to wipe out all the low-level pollution on your keyboard. Usually some dust or little particles of dirt and breadcrumbs etc..
By applying it on a constant basis your keyboard will NEVER get dirty and it’s a pre-disaster solution which prevents the disaster at all and doesn’t make you open up your keyboard for a LONG time. As I said before, it’s meant for low to mid level polluted keyboards and IF you have a keyboard which started puking out dirt and you see a new species of bacterial life growing inside it, then your best option is to probably open up the keyboard.
Here's a video on how to use Cyber Clean cleaning putty on a keyboard:
I STRONGLY ADVICE yu to get yourself a Cyber Clean cleaning putty because it's a best friend when it comes to cleaning and maintaining electronics, especially keyboards. Satisfaction guaranteed!! And you can clean your keyboard ALWAYS SAFE by aplying the cleaning putty on a constant basis. It's so easy to get one, Amazon is where you can find it easily. Here is where you can get one:
CLICK THE BUTTON TO GET A CYBER CLEAN "CLEANING PUTTY"
DEEP CLEANING – A Deep Dive For Absolute Refreshing
And now it’s time to talk about the most intense keyboard cleaning process ever. I find it helpful to execute this type of a cleaning practice once in a while (maybe once in 6 months or when you feel necessary). It will clean your keyboard INSIDE OUT and will make it last long if you maintain it properly.
The BEST PRACTICE that I recommend following is stated below. Here’s the algorithm of process:
- Your keyboard dirty? Detect how dirty it is. If you haven’t cleaned it for a long while apply DEEP CLEANING.
- Is your keyboard extremely dirty?? Then apply the DEEP CLEANING no matter what. (Will be written down below)
- After DEEP CLEANING your mechanical keyboard get yourself a “Cleaning Putty” (it’s awesome) and clean your keyboard with it on a constant basis (1-2 times a week)
With this cleaning algorithm your keyboard after a good deep cleaning practice won’t need an additional cleaning for a long time but the only thing you need to do is keep cleaning your keyboard with the cleaning putty. This way you won’t need to open up your keyboard again for a long long time and your workspace / gaming space will be much more hygienic and that’s only for the good of your health!! And remember, health is the only most important thing in your life!!
Now that I’ve provided you the algorithm of cleaning, I’ll no explain you how to deeply clean your keyboard that it will become as fresh and clean as the butt of a baby 🙂
Just like in engineering, maintenance is important no matter if you are an engineer or a gamer. And to apply these maintenance practices we need several tools. Here is the brief list of items for you to clean your keyboard inside out:
- Warm water
- Cloth for wiping and cotton swabs
- Isopropyl Alcohol
- Compressed Air
- Keycap Remover
The deep cleaning process is actually EASY but it takes some time to apply the full process. Have some patience and you’ll end up with a fresh clean keyboard!!
The DEEP CLEANING process in consisting of several different sub processes and I will explain you al of them step by step, follow my guidance!!!!
1 – General Surface Cleaning
First of all, plug of your keyboard and clear the workspace of your desk or the area that you’re cleaning your keyboard on. You may lay down some unused newspaper under the area you are cleaning your keyboard, it will help you keep your house clean.
Now, turn the keyboard over and give A GOOD SHAKING TO IT!! Just shake the hell out of that keyboard and make sure all the dirt and dust is coming out of the keyboard. You may be surprised at how much dirt might come out of your keyboard 🙂
Don’t slam it to your desk, don’t be destructive on it, just shake the hell out of it and make sure that there isn’t any more dirt coming out of it. Then you’re good to go!!
BLOW IT - Compressed Air
After shaking out the dust and dirt and being sure that nothing more is coming out, then you can switch to the next step, which is blowing the keyboard with compressed air. Don’t know where to find compressed air?? You can find the link for compressed air by clicking the link below:
After shaking out the keyboard, apply compressed air from 5 – 10 cm / 2-4” above with a 45-70 degree angle. This will blow the air inside and prevent your keyboard to be damaged by the particles blown away with the compressed air.
After this step your inner parts of your keyboard will be mostly cleared up. We will apply further deep cleaning to it but first we will complete the general surface clean up!!
Second step is the general cleaning of our keyboard surface! I recommend you creating a “Cleaning Solution” which drastically improves your cleaning efficiency. This is where isopropyl alcohol comes into the picture.
Mix isopropyl alcohol with warm water – the ratio should be %50 to %50 – in a little cup. WARNING: DO NOT USE ETHYL ALCOHOL!!!! It may damage your keyboard. Not guaranteed, but it’s better to b safe than sorry.
Then find a proper wiping cloth to wipe out the surface of your keyboard. Also don’t forget to get cotton swabs!! Then first dip the wiping cloth to the water alcohol solution and get it wet with it. But don’t ake it ultra wet, just a moisture with the solution is enough and don’t get it soaked too much with the solution.
Now gently wipe down the surface of your keyboard with the wiping cloth and wipe out all the surfaces as possible. It will generally clean all the keyboard surface.
Now, there will be little nooks and crannies left which are still dirty. Now it’s time for cotton swabs to take action!! Dip the cotton swab into the water-alcohol solution and after moisting it apply it carefully to the parts where a cleaning cloth can’t reach in detail. These are usually the spaces between buttons and the mainframe-button interaction. Go down these challenging areas and clear out all the sticky dirt from these tight spots.
Keycaps –Remove Them
We’re gonna dive deeper!! It’s time to remove the keycaps and clean the hell out of our keyboard!! For this task I want you to get a specific item which will be only benefitting you. It’s called a KEYCAP REMOVER!! And I advise you personally: NEVER EVER REMOVE YOUR KEYS WITHOUT A KEYCAP REMOVER!!
There are of course specific ways to remove the keys unconventionally but they are likely to harm your keys and after your keys are harmed there isn’t a way to return back the process. So, that’s why IT’S THE BEST OPTION TO GET A KEYCAP REMOVER. And they’re EXTREMELY CHEAP!! It’s not worth damaging your keys and the keycap remover is the only best thing to get for this process.
CLICK THE BUTTON TO BUY A KEYCAP REMOVER
Damaged keycaps sometimes end up unusable and you will have to reorder the specific keys hat are damaged from the keyboard company and it’ll probably cost you more than a keycap remover, so, get one!!
Here’s an instructional video about how to remove keycaps with a keycap remover. Follow the instructions and you’ll be fine 🙂
Remove ALL the keycaps with your keycap remover and put them in a cup. Sounds weird?? I’ll explain why 🙂
Keycap Cleaning – What If I Said Denture Tabs??
Yeah, that’s right, denture tabs is one of the most effective way to clean your keycaps 🙂 Drop 3 denture tabs in a cup fliled with hot water and ix them. When the denture tabs dissolve in the cup put your keycaps into the cup (which won’t be deformed by heat).
Be sure that all keycaps are submerged into the water!! Then close the cup with a seal and shake it around a minute or half. Then lay it torest around an hour. Then you can take them out of the cup and leave them to dry.
Don't know where to get denture tabs?? Here is the best selling denture tabs to give the BEST CARE for your keyboard. You can click the button to be naigated to the site where you can buy denture tabs:
CLICK THE BUTTON TO GET DENTURE TABS
While waiting them to dry you can complete the last steps of cleaning your keyboard.
Clean The Plate
Now that the keycaps are removed and the main plate of our keyboard is exposed you can clean the remainng dirt on it.
First, blow it with compressed air to remove all the dirt that air can remove. If you don’t want to use compressed air, you can use your lungs but it’s not that effective, just my two cents 🙂
After blowing the final dirts you ay still have sticked dirt on your keyboard, that’s why you should use your water-isopropyl alcohol mixture again. If you have any sticked dirts remaining clean them with the solution and maket hat keyboard damn shine!! Now you’re good to go for final step.
Some of you may be experiencing a sticky key problem. We all have been there. If some of your keys feel sticky and not pressing comfortably like others. To fix this issue you must drop only A SİNGLE DROP of water-alcohol solution on the sticky key and let it slide dowwn the mechanical switch. Then repeat the same process with the lubricating oil. Find an appropriate lubricating oil, which isn’t too visicous and drop it on the mechanical switch and see it sliding down the key and passing through the sides of it to the actual mechanical inner parts. Then press the key a few times to lubricate it Completely. Now you’re good to go!!
Just assembly the removed keycaps and you have a brand new fresh keyboard!!
What About The Washing Mashine??
It my sound absurd, but actually there are keyboard that are washable J I haven’t used one till now, but there is a fact that these kind of keyboards exist. But don’t try it unless it’s not specified as a washable keybord!!
HOW TO CLEAN A MECHANICAL KEYBOARD - FINALLY IT’S OVER!!
Finally it’s over!! Now you’re good to go with your fresh new keyboard and don’t forget to get yourself the cleaning putty to maintain this freshness of your keyboard!! And you can master your skills further on how to clean a mechanical keyboard - even can take it to the next level!!
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See you around 😉
Tyler, Founder of GMP.