Originally Posted by Captain Lolburger
Can one of you guys explain to me how using a vacuum to suck dust out of a computer creates static electricity and is a risk to "frying" components? I use a vacuum that is strong enough to not have to touch the computer. If there is no contact between the vacuum and the computer, there is no possibility of creating a static charge and destroying parts. Essentially, the dust is moving through the air and across your components whether you are blowing it around or vacuuming it out so the risk of static discharge is exactly the same with both techniques - ZERO.
The only big difference is that if you use compressed air, the odds are that you WILL eventually blow dust into a PCIe slot or a SATA socket or some other part and render it useless. Using a vacuum, there is no way of doing this.
Feel free to disagree with me if you want, but there is no need to be a sarcastic a$$hole about it.
I'm assuming the static electricity may become a problem if you have to make contact using the vacuum, since most vacuums require at least a little bit of contact, especially when the dust is a bit caked on. Most vacuums aren't grounded or made of metal for the hand-held head portion, allowing it to generate and not discharge some static electricity AFAIK, so a bit of contact might discharge it onto your computer.
As for blowing air in, odds are the dust you might end up blowing into a PCIe slot or SATA socket will be negligible and not make a difference. You're just as likely to get that tiny bit of dust in with your case fans. And a tiny bit of dust won't render a port useless. Keep in mind most ports have some sort of springing to make sure there is strong contact. This would make some dust in the ports not matter.
The only thing you shouldn't use compressed air to clean in a computer is the inside of an optical drive.