1. Keep the case clean
Cleaning the exterior portion of the laptop can help keep the laptop looking new. The exterior case of a laptop can be cleaned by using a soft, clean cloth such as an old cotton t-shirt or a microfiber towel that has been dampened with water. It is not recommended that the exterior case of the laptop be cleaned with household cleaning solutions. However, if there is a substance on the laptop that cannot be cleaned with water, rubbing alcohol should do the trick.
2. Keep keyboard clean
Now the keyboard is the part of the computer that is easiest to get dirty whether its from a slight spill or from dirty hands. Start with blowing of the keyboard and keys with compressed air. If you have a small vacuum with a soft brush attachment, use it to clear the keyboard of any debris. Make sure to remove as much dust and debris as possible before continuing. Now to clean the keyboards keys get a soft towel (I recommend a microfiber towel) and spray the towel with a good cleaner. Never spray directly onto the keyboard I used glass cleaner. If there is something truly sticky, rubbing alcohol will help remove it. Q-tips work nice for cleaning the sides of the keys if needed. Never use too much force when cleaning the keyboard as the keys are sensitive and you can risk rubbing the lettering off the keys.
3. Cleaning laptop touchpad
Cleaning the laptop can help improve the look of the laptop and also many times will help improve the responsiveness of the touchpad. The touchpad is obviously prone to smears and smudges as its designed to have your hands and fingers touching it all the time so keeping it clean is almost impossible. However a rubdown every now and then wont hurt. To clean the touchpad surface, use a soft cotton or microfiber towel and dampen it with water and gently rub the touchpad down.
4. Keep LCD Screen clean
Notebook LCD screens accumulate smudges all the time. To clean these, choose a non-abrasive cloth or towel (I recommend a microfiber towel). NEVER us paper towels or tissues to clean the screen. Do not use Plastic and glass cleaners with ammonia as it may leave a glare-causing film, so use a computer monitor specific cleaner or a LCD TV cleaner. Note that most laptop screens have a special coating on them so make sure to not use standard glass cleaner as they are too harsh. Make sure the computer and screen are off as its never good to rub onto a LCD screen when they are on. Spray the cleaner onto the cloth, then wipe the screen gently with it. Never spray directly on the screen. Rub gently over the screen making sure to get all the edges and corners.
5. Clean the Vents and Fans
Now its time to clean the vents and fans on the notebook. Start by powering off the notebook and removing the battery and AC adapter. Hold down the power button for a few seconds to discharge all power left in the system and to remove some static buildup. Now its best to remove the backing of the notebook and really get into the gut of the computer instead of just blowing dust from the outside all around inside the computer. Now when cleaning off fans make sure that the fan in secured and not going to spin when you spray them with compressed air as making them rotate with the air can damage the fans. So pin the fan in place and remove all dust from the blades. As for vents blow air from both directions to be sure to remove all dust and debris. If the blade is still dirty grab a Q-tip and rubbing alcohol and clean the blades gently. Once the majority of the dust and debris is gone give it a good, through run through with your air. Make sure to never touch anything on the inside of the notebook with the nozzle of the compressed air as you risk damaging components.
NEVER tilt you compressed air can as the can will release freezing cold CO2 which can damage sensitive components on your notebook!
6. Clean I/O Ports
The back of your notebook PC has a series of ports. After cleaning the cooling vents, take your compressed air and blow out any debris that may have accumulated in and around these ports. Again make sure to never touch these ports directly with the nozzle of the air can.
7. Cooling Pad
A cooling pad might be the best investment for someone who uses a notebook. Now if your like me, and overclock and push your notebook to the max, a notebook cooler is a must-have. I have the Antec Cooling Pad that i picked up on sale at Staples and it has been a solid cooler. Things to look for in a cooler is make sure that its built solid. I have seen coolers that are built about as solid as magazines. Make sure and look for a cooler that has more than one fan. The model I use has 2 fans, 2 speed settings, and a nice ambient blue LED on the back. I haven't done any test yet concerning the actual difference my pad makes but I will update once I do. Overall a notebook cooler is not a bad investment for $20.
8.Watch Placement Surfaces
This simply means be smart about where you place your notebook when you use it. Do not leave your notebook running on a poorly ventilated surface, such as wood or metal for too long. Once the wood or metal heats up from the heat of the laptop, it will retain the heat and not allow your notebook to cool properly. Another often over-looked placement is on the couch or bed. The bedding and fabric acts as a cover for all the vents and fans on the notebook and extremely hinder the notebooks cooling.
9. Stress on I/O Ports
Try not to let heavy power cords, USB cables, or any other cables that are plugged into your notebook hang. Over time, it could damage plugs in your notebook that could result in costly repairs. I have read stories where AC adapter were hanging and actually broke the power adapter that was soldered onto the motherboard.
10. Keyboard and Touchpad Care
Use the keyboard and touchpad lightly. Notebook keyboards and touchpads are not built as heavily as desktop keyboards and mice. Keeping the keyboard and touchpad clean and lightly tapping instead of â€œpunchingâ€ the keys or touchpad will help increase the notebookâ€™s life expectancy.
Never take your laptop anywhere without the carrying case
Do not leave your laptop sitting in the car for extended periods of time
This applies during both hot and cold weather. Prolonged exposure to extremetemperatures can result in a number of glitches and possible hardware damage.
Do not place anything heavy on the laptop
For example, a textbook. The screen is made of liquid crystal, and it doesnâ€™t take much to crack the screen. Also, try not to touch the screen because the oil on your fingers can ruin the screen.
Move the laptop as little as possible while in actual use.
Even though its a laptop, while its running you still have a hard drive spinning and other components working that are happier when still.