Author Topic: Cleaning laptops - dusty environment  (Read 643 times)

Cleaning laptops - dusty environment
« on: April 15, 2019, 10:20:45 am »
OK a simple question that's probably common sense but here goes.

I work in an industrial environment where dust and fibre is inevitable. This is obviously not good for computers of any kind. So I think I need to pay more care to cleaning my laptop.

What is the best way to clean out the airflow channels in the laptop? Is it possible to just get one of those compressed air cans and blow through? We have airlines with oil and dust traps, would this be safe?

Basically I'm not sure what's best for the laptop. Desktop units get opened up and airline but I doubt you can do that to a laptop as easily. Or at least easy enough for me to bother.

BTW if I did nothing what is the likely outcome? Overheating I guess. Right now the cooling fan gives out a bit of noise occasionally which led to my query. That's possibly due to dust I reckon. I did hear that laptops have better designed airflow channels due I compact size. The guy who told me that said they mostly blow dust straight out rather than depositing it like desktop units. Possibly a load of BS.

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: Cleaning laptops - dusty environment
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2019, 10:35:49 am »
Laptops are hard because they're much less easy to access the internals than a tower

Is it possible to part-disassemble your laptop? Then you can get in there with the cleaning tools. The problem with canned air is you can end up blowing the nasties inside the guts.

The guys on tour in Iraq and Afghanistan used to take cooling trays with them which can help a lot. Basically the symptoms were performance slowdowns or sometimes outright crashes.

To be honest I think the best option is to use a low-intensity device like an iPad where possible and keep it in a hermetically sealed case. The guys on the sites used ones like these https://www.amazon.co.uk/d/Tablet-Cases/Griffin-Survivor-Case-iPad-Translucent/B06XZ3CF25

Might not fit your requirements though you could experiment with having a tablet which does the actual legwork in off site computing (i.e. the cloud).
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
https://bit.ly/2Xg8pRD


Re: Cleaning laptops - dusty environment
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2019, 01:03:08 pm »
Office based but the nature of the business means dust in the air. Below levels for H&S issues but it is enough to build up. Unfortunately a tablet doesn't work for us / me. It's a desktop use, general office work.

I think there is an overheating issue occasionally. There certainly a slowdown. Mind you it's very old laptop. Unlikely to get a replacement though so need to keep it usable. Typical smaller business (50 employees mostly shopfloor) don't spend unless you have to and then it has to be cost effective / cheap (large capital equipment expenditure apart).

Morat

  • I tried to HTFU but something went ping :(
Re: Cleaning laptops - dusty environment
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2019, 08:34:40 pm »
An air-can is the way to go. Sometimes you can get away with blowing the dust back out the way in came in (laptop off so you don't stall the fans). If it's too clogged you'll need to get the case apart. After the first PC I air-canned, now I wait for a dry day and do it outdoors :)
Tandem Stoker, CX bike abuser (slicks and tarmac) and owner of a sadly neglected MTB.

Gattopardo

  • Lord of the sith
  • Overseaing the building of the death star
Re: Cleaning laptops - dusty environment
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2019, 04:37:24 pm »
Strip laptop and clean. 

It is the best way, as air can can dislodge fluff and move the fluff to another place.  But cleaning a keyboard should be enough.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Cleaning laptops - dusty environment
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2019, 06:10:29 pm »
Ob-earworm:

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/OpCJzdWxEbQ&rel=1" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/v/OpCJzdWxEbQ&rel=1</a>
https://youtu.be/OpCJzdWxEbQ
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...

Re: Cleaning laptops - dusty environment
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2019, 09:45:01 pm »
I usually vac mine. Use the nozzle and flex pipe on the Dyson to suck any Dust or whatever out, I hope.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Cleaning laptops - dusty environment
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2019, 10:59:26 pm »
I've generally found that while vacuuming is much less messy and often sufficient, blowing is more effective at dislodging fluff from heatsinks, fan blades, etc.
Careful, Kim. Your sarcasm's showing...