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How To Clean Your Electronics At Home

Woman in cleaning gear holding a mobile phone out to the camera

How To Clean Your Electronics At Home

Our beloved smartphones and other electronic devices are with us at home, work, in the car, and just about everywhere else. We use our mobile devices when we eat, head outdoors, and even use the bathroom. That’s way too much exposure to dirt and germs for us to not be in the habit of cleaning our smartphones and other electronics often.

According to Time magazine, research shows smartphones carry more germs than toilet seats, and your other electronic devices can be almost as bad. The germs on your phone can easily transfer to your face, nose, and mouth, either by direct contact or from your hands. In case you haven’t called on The Maids to help keep your things clean and sanitized, we’ve created this guide so you can do it yourself. Here’s how to clean and disinfect your smartphone and other electronics to keep them clean and healthy.


  • Always check the product manual before you clean any electronics.
  • Never spray cleaner or water directly onto electronics or smartphones.
  • Remember to disconnect electronic devices from power sources or remove the batteries before you start cleaning.

How To Clean A Smartphone

When you’re learning how to clean your smartphone, the first thing to know is that many of them have a fingerprint-resistant or protective coating. Instead of using a commercial cleaner that can damage those coatings, use water for cleaning to avoid damage to the screen.

  • Remove your smartphone from its case and if possible, remove the battery.
  • Dampen a microfiber cloth with water; clean the screen and housing.
  • Remove buildup from crevices and the edge of the screen with a damp cotton swab.
  • Use fresh cotton swabs and a clean section of your microfiber cloth to clean the phone case.
  • Spray the water and alcohol onto a microfiber cloth and wipe down the screen and housing.
  • Use a fresh section of your microfiber cloth to wipe down and sanitize the phone case.
  • Reinsert the battery if it was removed and put the case back on your phone when everything has dried.

How To Clean A Laptop

Laptops are mobile just like smartphones and we use them at home and the office for all kinds of tasks. But that mobility and convenience also make laptops vulnerable to dirt, dust, and bacteria. Here’s how to keep your laptop clean and healthy to minimize the spread of germs and dirt.

  • Turn the laptop upside down and firmly shake out the dust and debris from the keyboard.
  • Use a can of compressed air to blow the rest of the dirt out of the keyboard and from sealed ports like HDMI and audio connections.
  • Unplug the laptop and remove the battery.
  • Use a microfiber cloth dampened with only water, and wipe down the laptop surfaces inside and out.
  • Rub fingerprints and spots off of the screen.
  • Sanitize your laptop using alcohol and water.
  • Once everything dries, reinsert the battery.

How To Clean A Desktop PC

Desktop computers have more peripherals and parts, so you may need a little more time and effort to get them clean. Start by unplugging your computer tower and give it a minute to discharge any remaining electricity before you start cleaning. Here’s how to get your desktop computer clean again.

  • Clean your desktop monitor screen with the same procedure you used for your laptop. Wipe down the back of the monitor and the bezel with a microfiber cloth dampened with water.
  • Vacuum the air vents and ports on the back of your tower.
  • Wipe down your computer tower and the cords that are connected to it.
  • Turn your keyboard upside down and shake out the dust and debris.
  • Use compressed air to loosen the embedded dirt and dust.
  • Clean the keyboard and your mouse with a cloth dampened with water.
  • Finish up with a sanitary wipe down using your alcohol and water solution.

How To Clean A Flat-Screen TV

Like many handheld electronic devices, LED and Plasma TVs usually have a protective coating on the screen. Skip the glass cleaner and other commercial cleaners and clean the screen and the rest of the TV with water only. Here’s how to clean your flat-screen TV.

  • Dampen a microfiber cloth with water and wipe down the screen first.
  • Get into the corners of the screen and crevices using a dampened cotton swab.
  • Wipe down the back of the TV housing, the screen bezel, and the TV base.
  • Clean any peripherals like DVD players, gaming consoles, and streaming devices with your damp microfiber cloth.
  • Remove the batteries from the TV remote and use compressed air to blow out dust and debris.
  • Use a dampened cotton swab to get in between the keys on the remote.
  • Reinsert the batteries for the remote and wipe it down with alcohol and water to disinfect

How To Clean Fitness Trackers And Smartwatches

Anything you wear around your wrists or neck during a workout will be exposed to sweat and the dirt and germs it contains. While many fitness trackers and smartwatches are made with synthetic materials for durability and sweat-resistants, it’s a smart (and healthy) idea to clean and sanitize these items frequently. Here’s how to keep your smartwatch or fitness tracker clean.

  • Use a microfiber cloth dampened with water to wipe dirt and dust from the screen and casing.
  • Clean any crevices and buttons with a damp soft-bristled toothbrush.
  • Remove the wristband if possible for cleaning.
    • Clean nylon bands with dish soap and water.
    • Use alcohol and water for silicone wristbands.
    • Wipe down metal bands with a dry microfiber cloth.
    • Clean up leather bands with a dampened microfiber cloth, followed by a leather conditioner.
  • Reattach the band to the device once everything is dry.
  • Wipe down the screen, housing, buttons, and band with alcohol and water to disinfect your device.

How To Clean Headphones And Earphones

Earphones and headphones are susceptible to dirt and germs from our hands and sweat and earwax from our ears. Keeping all that yucky stuff off your earbuds and headphones should be a priority, so here’s how to get earphones clean and fresh.

  • Disconnect your headphones or earphones and remove any batteries before you start cleaning.
  • Remove the tips or covers and wash them in the sink with dish soap and water.
  • Use a damp microfiber cloth dampened with water to wipe down the rest of the headphones and any cords.
  • Clean crevices and grooves with a cotton swab dampened with water.
  • Put the headphones back together when everything dries.
  • Wipe down the surfaces of your earbuds using alcohol and water.
  • Reinsert the batteries, and you’re done.

Keep your smartphone and other electronic devices clean and healthy on a regular basis to stop the spread of germs. Your electronics, and your health, will appreciate your efforts!

About The Author
Jessica Samson is a cleaning expert for
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