A clean computer is the easiest way to make sure your system is reliable.

Maintaining a clean computer on the inside is a very important thing to do.  If your computer system is clean on the inside, the case will continue to move air through keeping all of your components cool.  

A common problem I see when servicing other peoples computers is poor airflow.  As a result usually the video card or the cpu end up running to hot, this causes system crashing, blue screen Windows errors, and just an overall performance loss.

If you have your motherboard controlling fan speeds, your system will also run louder because the temperatures end up being to high as a result of poor air flow.  The motherboard compensates and runs the fans at full speed, all the time.

Let's go through a computer cleaning.

You will need a star screwdriver, a can of compressed air or an air compressor with a blow nozzle.  If you use an air compressor, make sure the air is dry by spraying a piece of wood first, and checking to see if it is damp.  If there is any moisture in your lines I recommend you pick up a can of compressed air and use that instead.


    Never use a vacuum to clean a computer, they often generate a lot of static electricity. A single shock can cause a computer component to become useless.

  • Step 1 - Turn off the computer, and remove all the wires connecting to it.
  • Step 2 - Take the covers off of the computer case, this is usually done by removing the 4 screws on the left and right side of the case.  You can see the 2 missing screws here, do the same for the opposite side.
  • Step 3 - Slide the covers back, they stop about a half inch back.  Then the panel is free to remove.
  • Step 4 - Remove the video card, it's where your monitor was plugged into.  If your video card is part of your motherboard, skip this step.
  • Step 5 - Take the case outside and blow compressed air through everthing.  When blowing air past any fans, stop the fans from spinning.  Not doing so can permanetly damage your fans, because they will spin much faster than they were designed to.
  • Step 6 - Once you're all finished put the video card back in, put the panels back on the case.

In my experience the worst spots for dust to build up are, the front case fan, the cpu heatsink, the video card, and the power supply.  Give these some extra attention when cleaning.

To make sure you always have a clean computer, go through these simple steps every six months.  It will help keep your system running its best.

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