Why You Should Clean Your Computer in 2021


Computers don’t clean themselves, but there are many ways you can keep your computer happy by keeping it clean.

If you’ve ever seen inside a computer or laptop before, the first thing to jump out at you is undoubtedly all the dust. Some people have more than others, but everyone who opens their computer will find some degree of dust that’s constantly being pulled into the machine just by using it every day.


Dust that accumulates in your CPU fan can slow down its effectiveness and cause it to overheat—and if you’re overclocking, then this could be especially disastrous for your system. If dust covers your graphics card fan, then obviously it’s not going to be able cool itself very well either. You need to clean it up or arrange someone to do so!

If you’re like me and happen to enjoy tinkering with your computer, then this is an even greater problem. It’s easy enough to mess around inside of a desktop PC; getting into a laptop is another story. No matter what, if you plan on doing any sort of work on the insides of your machine (even just replacing the thermal paste), then keep in mind that it needs to be as clean as possible, so dust doesn’t get stuck to important components or gum up fans/heat sinks.

As for those who don’t overclock their CPU or play games, they can still benefit from keeping their computer free from dust. In addition to making sure that no dirt has a chance to build up and short out things, cleaning plays a very important role.

Unwanted insulation

The dust itself can act as an insulator, trapping heat in the areas it covers. This goes beyond just overheating; some components rely on cooler air to remain stable.

For example, if you have a laptop with soldered RAM, then there’s nothing you can do to upgrade its memory unless you take it apart and clean out the old solder (which will lose its ability to hold onto data after too much time).

The same goes for graphics cards . If your card doesn’t have a bit of space between the pin connections and the core heatsink, then overclocking is impossible. Even if there is room for free airflow after your system is built, dust could still accumulate along the inside of any metal shielding that might be covering.

Fire hazard

Another reason why you should keep your computer clean is because it’s a fire hazard. If your CPU overheats, the motherboard’s capacitors can explode and catch on fire. And don’t even get me started on computer fans, they’re basically a spinning fire hazard with blades that could cut you open.

Computer dust is more than just a nuisance; it can cause problems for your computer. For example, the static electricity from dust build-up causes malfunctioning in electronics. If you have an armada of fans blowing inside of your computer, then static electricity is bound to happen especially if you have pet hair or carpet all over your desk area. Even worse, some dust has been known to turn into a lightning rod while particles collect around it! This makes your expensive gaming hardware short-circuit and eventually stop running properly until you clean it up.


So how can you clean up a computer?

Compressed air

One way to clean a computer is simply using a can of compressed air. Just spray the dust away from your computer, specifically from part where it builds up, such as around the fan. For example, if you have dirt in your keyboard, use a can of compressed air to blow it away.


If you were thinking about how to clean the inside of your desktop PC vacuum is another option; especially if you would like to remove any particles lurking in hard-to-reach places.

Rubbing alcohol or Water

Another method for cleaning out dirt and grime is with rubbing alcohol or water. You can put some on cotton swabs and then wipe down parts that are dirty. Be careful when using liquids near electrical components because they might short circuit due to water.

If you’re too scared to do the above, simply ring a computer technician /professional who can come and clean your desktop PC.

If you have a laptop, you can still be proactive with taking care of it. Remove all the screws on the bottom cover and use compressed air to get rid of any dirt that has accumulated. You don’t want to get liquid or dust into your laptop because there might be an expensive repair bill in the future.

On a final note

If you don’t take care of your computer, more things could break down and cause problems for you in the future; therefore, causing more expenses. Note that cleaning/maintaining your computer is not such a daunting task after all!

I am a computer engineer holding a bachelor's degree in Computer Science, complemented by a Master's in Business Administration from University of Strathclyde, Scotland. I currently work as a Senior IT Consultant in Melbourne, Australia. With over 15 years of...