How to Safely Disinfect Your Laptop

Covid-19 has brought disinfecting practices into the spotlight, and it seems as though these practices are here to stay. We wash our hands every time we go out, sneeze or touch high-contact surfaces. Think this is enough? It’s not. Imagine what happens when you hit a button in the lift and then use the family laptop. Feels scary, doesn’t it? The average desktop has 400 times more bacteria than the average toilet seat. This shows us that adopting proper disinfecting practices is not really an option anymore, it’s a necessity.

Family members can sometimes share our computers and laptops and whether we realise it or not, can be a breeding ground for germs and bacteria that cause and spread illnesses. Here are some general tips that will help your PC and laptop surfaces germ-free and safeguard you from Coronavirus – 

Things you will need:

Things to know before you begin:

  • Firstly, do not use glass cleaners, bleach, ammonia or abrasives to clean your computer. These agents can be too harsh for delicate computer screens and don’t kill germs. 
  • Secondly, do not use paper towels or facial tissues as they can scratch the surface of your screen. A microfiber cloth is the safest way to clean your electronic devices.
  • Thirdly, and most importantly, know that there is a difference between cleaning and disinfecting. According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, cleaning refers to “removal” of germs from surfaces while disinfecting refers to using chemicals to “kill” germs from surfaces.

Laptop and Monitor Screens (including Macbooks)

Step 1: Turn off your laptop and disconnect it from any power source. If your laptop has a removable battery, take it out. Make sure to remove any external devices like pen drives and SD cards.
Step 2: Wear disposable gloves.
Step 3: Dampen a microfiber towel with an alcohol-based disinfectant or use a disinfecting wipe to wipe down the screen. Gently wipe in the same direction (top to bottom) and do not allow any moisture to get into the keyboard, speakers or the USB ports.
Step 4: If you notice streaks developing, wipe the screen once more with a clean cloth or wipe and let the screen air dry.
Step 5: Dispose of the gloves in the bin and wash your hand with soap for 20 seconds.

Keyboards

Step 1: Turn off your laptop and disconnect it from any power source. If your laptop has a removable battery, take it out. Make sure to also remove any external devices like pen drives and SD cards.
Step 2: Next, unplug your keyboard from your computer. If you use a wireless keyboard, remove the batteries and keep them aside.
Step 3: Put on those disposable gloves.
Step 4: If you have an air duster or compressed air, hold your laptop at a 75- degree angle and spray this canned air at it. As a result, it will remove the debris and make sure it doesn’t settle somewhere else on the keyboard. If you don’t have an air duster, a fine smooth brush can be an excellent alternative.
Step 5: Now dampen your clean microfiber cloth with rubbing alcohol or disinfectant and gently wipe down your keyboard. Remember to wring the cloth well, as you want to prevent any moisture from getting between the keys.
Step 6: Do not replace any batteries or external devices until the keys are dry.
Step 7: Dispose of the gloves in the bin and wash your hand with soap for 20 seconds.

Mouse 

Step 1: Turn off your mouse, unplug it. Remove any batteries.
Step 2: Put on your disposable gloves.
Step 3: Dampen your microfiber cloth with isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) or any disinfectant you have. Be careful to not get any moisture into the openings of the mouse.
Step 4: Let the mouse air dry.
Step 5: Dispose of the gloves in the bin and wash your hand with soap for 20 seconds.


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