How To Clean Mac Keyboard: A Step-by-Step Guide

how to clean mac keyboard
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It is important to clean and sanitize your Mac keyboard on a regular basis to avoid malfunctions and other things that may arise from packing so much debris. Here, I’ve outlined some steps to assist you in exercising extreme caution when cleaning your Mac keyboard in order to avoid causing any damage.

Points To Note

  • Cleaning your keyboard with a damp, soft, lint-free cloth is an excellent approach to eliminating dust and filth.
  • With a bit of pressure and an alcohol-soaked cotton swap, you can remove difficult stains.
  • A can of pressurized air is an excellent instrument for removing dirt from certain keyboards.

How to Clean/Remove Dirt and Debris From Your Mac Keyboard

Step #1.

Turn off your computer. If your keyboard is part of your laptop, turn it off before you start cleaning. This will help to prevent harm throughout the cleaning procedure.

Step #2.

Turn off your keyboard’s power supply. If your laptop includes a keyboard, unplug it completely. Otherwise, unplug your PC, laptop, or tablet’s keyboard.

Step #3.

Shake any remaining dirt and crumbs into a dustbin or sink. To begin, take your keyboard to a dustbin and turn it upside down. Shake it gently and move it from side to side to dislodge any loose dirt or particles. Gently rub your palm over the keys to loosen any dirt that has become lodged.

Step #4.

Spray compressed air into the MacBook keyboard (early 2015 or later). To begin, tilt the keyboard at a 75-degree inclination so that it is not exactly vertical. Then, spray some compressed air across the keyboard’s surface from left to right. Keep the air compression can’s straw about 12 inch away from the keyboard. After spraying the entire keyboard, turn it 90 degrees to one side and spray all keys from left to right again. Repeat until you’ve sprayed the keyboard from every angle. 

Apple does not advocate using compressed air on all keyboards since it may push particles deeper into the keyboard. This procedure is only applicable to MacBook notebooks manufactured in early 2015 or later.

Step #5.

Wipe the surface of the keyboard with a damp, soft, lint-free cloth. Before contacting your keyboard with the damp cloth, ring out any extra moisture. To clean dust and grime, carefully run the cloth over the surface of the keys. Make sure there is no additional moisture in between the keys throughout this operation.

To wet your cloth, try using alcohol. After blowing out the keyboard with compressed air, wipe it down with paper towels or a microfiber cloth moistened with 91% alcohol. Alcohol will not harm any of the electrical components found beneath those keys.

Step #6.

Stains can be removed with a damp cotton swab or a damp lint-free cloth. Scrub stains from your keys or keyboard with a little pressure. Apply the cotton swab or cloth to the stain after it has become somewhat damp. Gently rub in a circular motion until the stain is gone.[4]

If you have a white keyboard, spend additional time scrubbing the dark brown patches that form on the spacebar and where your fingers rest.

Step #7.

Dry the keyboard with a gentle, dry, lint-free towel. For this stage, consider using a microfiber cloth. Run it over the keyboard to get rid of any lingering moisture or dust that has accumulated.

Disinfecting the Keyboard

Step #1.

Keep your laptop turned off and your keyboard unplugged. Make sure your laptop is turned off and unplugged while you disinfect it. If the keyboard is not attached to the computer, make sure it is not powered on.

Step #2.

Purchase a package of disinfectant wipes. Clorox and Lysol are two options to explore. You’ll want wipes that don’t contain bleach, so make sure to read the labels before you buy. Bleach can ruin your keyboard’s polish.

Step #3.

Squeeze extra moisture from the wipes into the sink. Sometimes you’ll grab a really damp disinfecting wipe. Before applying it on your keyboard, make sure you squeeze it out to make it only slightly damp.

Step #4.

Gently scrub your keyboard with the disinfecting wipe. Place the wipe over one of your fingers. Massage each key and the area between the keys with that finger. To avoid damaging the keys, don’t push too hard or move your finger too quickly.

Step #5.

Wipe down the keyboard. This is a critical step that is sometimes ignored. After disinfecting the keyboard, use a clean, soft, lint-free cloth to remove any remaining moisture. Make careful you don’t leave the wipe on the keyboard for too long. After wiping each key, discard the wipe and carefully dry the keyboard.

Step #6.

Wait 5-10 minutes before restarting the keyboard or laptop. Waiting a few moments will allow the keyboard to completely dry. When it is entirely dry, you can reactivate your keyboard and enjoy the cleanliness!

How to Clean Your Mac Keyboard Using Compressed Air

If you have an unresponsive key or a key that feels different than the other keys when you press it on your MacBook (2015 and after) or MacBook Pro (2016 and later), use compressed air to clean the keyboard.

Remember to use the straw that came with the compressed air to manage airflow and to keep the end of the straw about a half-inch away from the keyboard as you spray. Remember not to tilt the air can when spraying. Here are steps on how to clean your Mac keyboard with compressed air:

  • Hold your Mac notebook at a 75-degree inclination, little less than vertical.
  • Spray the keyboard, or just the affected keys, with compressed air in a left-to-right motion.
  • Rotate your Mac notebook to the right side and spray the keyboard from left to right once again.
  • Repeat the procedure, but this time swivel your Mac notebook to the left side.

Additional Cleaning Products for your Keyboard

If you have a dirty buildup on a certain key or two on your keyboard, you may wish to clean those keys specifically. You can wipe the keyboard with a soft, dry, lint-free cloth, but if you need something stronger, Apple recommends using a 70% isopropyl alcohol wipe, a 75% ethyl alcohol wipe, or a Clorox disinfecting wipe on the hard, nonporous surfaces of your Apple devices, such as the display and keyboard. Just be careful not to use anything that contains bleach or hydrogen peroxide.

What you should not do when cleaning your keyboard

Here are a few things to avoid if you want to clean your keyboard even more thoroughly:

  • Use no aerosols, bleach cleansers, or abrasive cleaners.
  • Avoid getting moisture or liquid into the holes.
  • If you clean too violently, you risk damaging the keyboard.
  • No cleaning should be sprayed directly on the keyboard.
  • Avoid using items containing bleach or hydrogen peroxide.

If you still have problems with certain keys after cleaning your MacBook keyboard, you may need to contact Apple for keyboard repair information.

How Do You Clean the Space Between the Keys on a Mac Keyboard?

Spray a can of compressed air along the side of the keyboard. Work your way up and down the rows, first vertically and then laterally. That will help you get a lot of the crumbs and everyday debris out of there.

Can You Use Isopropyl Alcohol To Clean Your Mac Keyboard?

Yes. It can be used to clean electronic components’ connections, potentiometers, and dust. While this is being done, all electronics should be switched off.

How Do I Clean A Greasy Mac Keyboard?

The Apple Store’s standard procedure is as follows:

  • Turn off the MacBook Pro.
  • Spray a clean soft cotton towel with a 70% isopropyl alcohol combination.
  • Wipe the keys with a slightly moist cloth, pushing or scraping as needed.
  • Steps 2 and 3 should be repeated until the keyboard and the space between the keys are clean and free of discolouration, dirt, and grime.
  • Never splatter liquids on the keyboard. This could result in liquid contact with the circuitry beneath the keyboard (the most expensive of all repairs) or sticky keys.

How Do I Clean Under My Keyboard Without Removing The Keys?

If your keys do not come out easily, try the tape approach. Fold a small piece of transparent tape in half, sticky side up. Move the tape back and forth underneath the keys to collect dust. If your keyboard is littered with junk, you may need to replace the tape on a regular basis.

How Do I Clean The Sticky Keyboard On My MacBook Pro?

  • Turn off your computer.
  • Clean your keys with isopropanol.
  • Remove the derbris using a toothpick.
  • Remove your keys
  • Apply soap and warm water.
  • Allow the keys to dry.
  • Insert the key into the correct location.

How Do I Clean My MacBook Keyboard With Slime?

Cleaning slime is a gooey substance that may reach deep into gaps and extract trapped particles and dust off your keyboard. Pull the slime back after gently pressing it down on the keyboard. If done correctly, it will pull up massive amounts of grime.

Can You Clean MacBook Keyboard With Hand Sanitizer?

Yes, but not too much, and let it dry well before applying.

What Happens If My Mac Keyboard Gets Wet?

If your MacBook gets wet, you should dry it as soon as possible and as carefully as possible. To begin, wipe any residual liquid from your device with a microfiber cloth, being sure to dry the keyboard, vents, trackpad, and USB ports. To dry small, difficult-to-reach areas, use a cotton swab.

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