How to Clean a Computer Keyboard

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story. Learn more about our affiliate and product review process here.

Squeaky is all about the borderline genius hacks and ideas that keep literally every inch of your space pristine.

Did you know that computer keyboards harbor dirt, germs, and bacteria? (Not to mention debris, especially if you're snacking at your desk.) So, it's a good idea to give it a good cleaning. Ideally, you should clean a keyboard at least once a month, as well as sanitize it weekly. Here's how to do both.


How to Clean a Keyboard

Things You'll Need

Step 1: Unplug your keyboard.

Be sure the power is turned off on your keyboard before cleaning.

Video of the Day

Step 2: Turn your keyboard over and lightly shake it.

You can place a towel under your keyboard, then turn it upside down over the towel. Give it a light shake a couple of times so that any loose particles or debris falls out onto the towel.


Step 3: Brush around the keys.

Use a clean paintbrush or a keyboard brush to lightly dust around and under the keyboard keys. This will helps dislodge any debris that may be stuck underneath the keys without damaging them.

Step 4: Use a toothbrush to remove any sticky buildup.

Lightly scrub any sticky buildup with a dry toothbrush to loosen it up. In Step 6, we will go back to remove what is left behind.


Step 5: Spray air around your computer keys.

Canned air really helps to push out any lodged debris that may still be stuck in your keyboards without damaging them. Simply point the nozzle downward around each key and spray the air to help loosen and push out debris.

Step 6: Clean keys with a damp microfiber cloth.

Very lightly dampen a microfiber cloth with water and give your computer keys a wipe down. This will remove any surface material and sticky material that may still be left behind. Dry it with a clean, dry microfiber cloth.


WARNING: Do not oversaturate the microfiber cloth with water as it could damage the keyboard.

How to Sanitize a Keyboard

It's a good idea to sanitize your keyboard once a week, especially after sharing your keyboard with others or after being sick, in order to help kill bacteria that may be lingering on your keys.


Things You'll Need

Step 1: Unplug your keyboard.

Step 2: Lightly dampen a microfiber cloth with isopropyl alcohol.

Simply spray the microfiber cloth lightly with 70% or higher isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) until it is slightly damp.

WARNING: Do not oversaturate the cloth or the moisture could damage your keyboard.

Step 3: Wipe down the keyboard.

Gently wipe down the computer keys and the surface area of the keyboard.



Report an Issue

screenshot of the current page

Screenshot loading...