Let’s be honest: Part of the reason we love Macs so much is their sleek design and look. So keeping your laptop or desktop machine looking fresh — regardless of its age — should be just as important as making sure your hardware is operating smoothly. Whether you use your Mac for school, work or casual use, it’s nice to have a device that looks brand new.
Using these tips can quickly give your machine a much-needed refresh. Your friends and coworkers might even ask how you did it. Before we dive in, be sure to always keep these things in mind when cleaning the exterior of any Mac product:
- Use only a soft, lint-free cloth, such as one made with microfiber. Avoid abrasive cloths and towels that might cause damage. Even paper towels are not recommended, as they can leave lint on the surface.
- Don't spray directly from a spray bottle (aerosol or pump) onto the surface of your Mac .
It’s important to know that cleaning your Mac with a liquid may end up doing extra damage — and that liquid damage isn’t covered under the Apple product warranty or AppleCare Protection Plans.
How to Clean a Laptop Screen
For use with MacBook, MacBook Pro and MacBook Air
So is that all you’re supposed to do: Wipe the screen using a dry cloth?
Actually, Apple does recommend using a damp cloth to clean your machine. The word “damp,” of course, is up for interpretation: damp with what? Water? Window cleaner? Acetone (nail polish remover)? You want to use something more effective than water but not as harmful as a commercial cleaning agent, which might contain bleach or ammonia.
We have come up with our own homemade screen cleaner, which you can make using products you most likely already have on hand at home. An added bonus? There’s no need to store it and it’s much less expensive than a premixed screen cleaner.
Homemade Screen Cleaner
- 2 tablespoons (1 fluid ounce) isopropyl rubbing alcohol
- 2 tablespoons (1 fluid ounces) warm water
Mix together in a small glass or non reactive dish.
If your resulting mixture looks small, don’t worry. Remember that you want to use a microfiber cloth that is just damp, not soaking wet. You’d be surprised how little you actually need.
After you’ve made your screen cleaner, it’s time to get down to business. Here are the steps to cleaning your laptop screen:
- Make sure the laptop is powered off. Unplug the power adapter and disconnect all cables and peripherals.
- Dampen the microfiber cloth with a little bit of the alcohol solution. Wring out any extra liquid.
- In a small circular motion, wipe the screen from side to side; repeat downward until you have wiped the entire screen.
- The solution should dry quickly by itself. However, if you’d like, you can wipe again with a dry microfiber cloth.
- Make sure the screen is completely dry before turning your computer back on.
You can follow the same steps as above to clean the monitor connected to your iMac screen or the screen of the monitor you use with your Mac Pro. However, because the screen is larger, you may need a bit more of the alcohol solution.
How to Clean Apple Touch Screens
You can also follow the same steps to clean the screens of your iPhone or iPad. However, because these devices are smaller, you will need less of the alcohol solution. Additionally, you may want to remove any protective case you have over these devices before cleaning the screen. Oftentimes, dust or dirt collects in the ridges between the case and the screen.
Due to the sheer amount of use these screens get — and especially considering everything the screen of your iPhone might pick up in the course of a day —it’s wise to get into a regular cleaning routine. Health professionals suggest giving your phone a quick wipe down once daily.
How to Clean a Keyboard
Use the same screen cleaner solution, and again, use a microfiber cloth. Rather than using a circular motion, though, lightly pass the damp cloth across the keyboard. Allow it to dry naturally or wipe with another dry cloth.
It’s important to note that this can be a tricky process. You want to clean the keyboard as well as you can, but you also want to be careful not to get any moisture into the cracks and openings of your Mac.
Before wiping the keyboard, it might also be a good idea to use a spray from a can of compressed air to help you get any crumbs or dust out of your keyboard’s nooks and crannies. That way, you can rely on the cleaning solution as a simple disinfectant.
Keeping your mac looking like new depends as much on how you use it as it does with how you clean it. So be sure to take preventive care of your laptop or desktop by avoiding using liquids or eating near your computer (we know, this one is tough!) and keeping your Mac away from excessive heat or cold. Storing your MacBook in a case or sleeve will provide valuable extra protection from dirt, moisture, or potential scratch-causing objects. Covering your desktop with a drop cloth while you aren’t using it is another great way to help protect it from dust and other particles.
When combined, these simple procedures will restore your Mac to looking (and feeling) like new. You’ll find yourself happier working on a sparkling, out-of-the-box-looking computer. But if you’re still ready to invest in a sparkling fresh upgrade, check out RenewedMac’s selection of top-of-the-line Apple products today!