Friday, April 27, 2012

Cleaning 101

People often ask what they can use to clean off their computer screens, iPods, iPads and cell phones.  Sometimes they ask if it's ok to use...water, window cleaner, Clorox wipes, eyeglass cleaner, scotch tape, etc.  The usual aim of the cleaner is to get rid of those pesky fingerprints and light dirt film that accumulates on the screen.

This discussion about the best cleaning product was actually brought up during one of my tech integration meetings at Essdack this year.  The best solution was the microfiber cloth sold by Walmart© in the automotive department.  Seeing as the cloths were bigger than than one would need for a computer screen, it was recommended to cut them up in fourths; however, the edges have a tendency to fray leaving lint residue on the computers.  This issue was resolved thanks to Ann Smith, who used the Surger© to sew the cut edges.  I have started distributing these microfiber cloths to the teachers, secretaries and administrators in the various buildings.  (If you have not received one yet, please send me an email.)

You should not need to add any product or water to these cloths; however, if you have something sticky on your screen, you can get a corner of the cloth damp, get the sticky off and then wipe the screen with a dry area on the cloth.  These cloths can be washed, but make sure you DO NOT use fabric softener.

The other essential cleaning tool for your computer is the Magic Eraser© by Mr. Clean.  This handy product gets rid of those black fingerprints on your external or laptop keyboard.  They are easy to use - pull out an eraser, get it wet and then wring all the access water out until it feels pretty dry.  Now start scrubbing those keys and watch the dirt come off.  I usually keep a dry cloth handy to wipe up any water that comes out of the eraser as you are scrubbing.  (There isn't much water and if there is, then you didn't wring out your eraser enough before starting.)  Depending on how hard you scrub, you will get some eraser residue left behind.  I either blow it off the keys, wipe it off with another cloth or use some canned air when I'm finished cleaning the keyboard.

Disclaimer:  make sure you either turn the computer off or unplug your keyboard before you start cleaning.

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