You get home from a long day at work and the first thing you can’t wait to do is check out what’s going on in the land of social media. But wait, what’s that nasty stuff all over your keyboard? And when was the last time you cleaned all those gross finger smudges off your computer screen?! Every once in awhile, you need to show your computer a little love, especially if you want to keep browsing your favorite websites without having to look through those finger smudges and smears.
How to Clean Your Computer Screen
First thing’s first – power down that computer and let’s get to cleaning! You’re going to want to steer clear of using any all-purpose type cleaners when cleaning your computer screen as they may contain harmful acetone or alcohols which will strip the protective layer.
First, you will want to take a dry cloth, preferably a microfiber cloth which is gentle on the screen and will not mark or scratch it. You could even use a Swiffer feather duster which also does a lovely job of lifting and trapping dust from your computer screen, between the keys of the keyboard and literally any other surface of your computer. The Swiffer duster also works great for other dusting applications and even extends up to 3 feet making it great for cleaning ceiling fan blades or other high up surfaces!
You may also choose to use a cotton tea towel, cotton t-shirt or rag if that’s all you have handy. However, DO NOT use materials like paper towels, facial tissues or non-cotton dish towels as these materials are abrasive and can cause damage to your computer screen.
Once you’ve removed all the dust from the computer surface you can tackle those gross finger smears and smudges left by Aunt B last Christmas when she thought your computer was one of those fancy touch screens all the kids have nowadays! YUK! You’re going to want to slightly dampen a clean microfiber or cotton cloth with distilled water making sure that it is not too moist. It’s important to use distilled water because tap water contains harsh minerals which can cause damage to your computer screen over time. Wipe down the whole computer with your damp cloth. If there is tough grime on your computer screen that isn’t coming clean, you can also try using a computer safe cleaning agent such as Endust surface cleaning wipes. These wipes work phenomenally on not only computers, but also TV remotes, your kids cheeto-crumb covered gaming controllers, tablets and much more! The great thing is they’re acetone and alcohol-free so they won’t damage any of your electronics and since they’re fast drying they won’t leave any streaks.
If you’re a die hard when it comes to the cleanliness of your computer station, you may prefer to take the next step in cleaning by investing in a cleaning kit like the Screen Cleaner Kit from Screen Mom. This cleaning kit is super affordable and it’s naturally made from plant-based ingredients. It’s tested to be animal and family friendly and it won’t damage your electronics with harmful alcohols, acetone or phosphates. The kit comes with a large scratch-free microfiber cloth too which is great to use on other things like your HDTV and smartphone screens.
Although these cleaning products are wonderful and they work like a dream, you may not have them handy when you need them. And if you’re anything like I am, sometimes you cannot be bothered to wait on your online order of cleaning supplies to arrive. So what can you do? Well, you can always make a simple DIY cleaning solution at home!
All you will need is some distilled water and white vinegar. Combine a 50/50 mix of distilled water and white vinegar, adding slightly more vinegar if you notice it is not strong enough for the cleaning application. Dip your microfiber or cotton cloth in the cleaning solution and wring it out well before wiping down the computer screen. It is extremely important that you wring out the cloth as much as possible because drips can lead to permanent damage and malfunction if the moisture gets into the circuit board of your computer. You could even pour the solution into a spray bottle and simply spritz the cloth to be absolutely sure there isn’t too much moisture. Don’t apply too much moisture at once to your screen because an excessive amount can damage it over time.
The best method for removing smudges and fingerprints is by moving your cloth in circular motions. This helps to lift the grime and pull it away from the screen without leaving a streaky mess. You may have to repeat this cleaning action several times if you have a tough mess on your hands. Once you are satisfied, be sure to take a clean, dry microfiber or cotton cloth and wipe down the screen to make sure that any leftover moisture is removed. Most importantly, you will need to let your computer dry completely before booting it back up again. You can either let it air dry for a few hours, or if you’re impatient like me, you may choose to use a blow dryer or fan to speed up the process. Use extreme caution when using blow dryers though, because they can get quite hot which could also damage your computer screen. If you choose to use this method, use ONLY the cool setting and hold the blow dryer at least 6 inches away from the screen so as not to harm it. Once it’s fully dry, you’re good to power up and jump back online!