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How to Clean a Laptop Screen

Even at the cleanest of desks, a laptop screen can attract dirt and dust particles that you'll notice as you work or watch movies and TV. Enjoy your high-resolution laptop screen to the fullest by cleaning it periodically. While the LCD and LED screens on laptop computers are made of layers of delicate plastics, coatings and other materials, it's actually relatively easy to keep them clean without scratching or damaging the screen's surface as long as you take a few precautions.

What you'll need:

  • Clean microfiber cloth. It's important not to use paper towels, tissues or other abrasive surfaces.
  • Distilled water. Tap water can leave filmy mineral deposits on the screen.
  • Spray bottle. You don't want to get the cleaning cloth too damp, so an atomizer or spray bottle may be helpful.

Step 1: Turn off your computer.

Before doing any cleaning or maintenance procedures, it’s always safest to completely turn off and unplug your computer. Wait for any moisture from water or cleaners used to fully dry before you turn your PC back on.

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Step 2: Dust the screen softly.

It's important to get any large dirt particles off the screen so that they aren't pulled along the screen, potentially scratching it, when you wipe it with the microfiber cloth. Very gently dusting the screen will remove these particles.

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Step 3: Mist or lightly wet the cleaning cloth.

If you don't use a spray bottle, be sure to only lightly dampen the soft cleaning cloth. You don't want the cloth to be so wet that it drips or leaves behind water on the surface of the screen, where it could run under the surrounding plastic bezel. If water gets in this space, it could damage important electrical components.

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Step 4: Wipe the screen gently.

Use wide side-to-side or top-to-bottom movements instead of small buffing motions to avoid leaving streaks or small scratches. You only need enough pressure to keep the cloth touching the screen. LCD screens are extremely sensitive and can develop discolored or dark zones if too much pressure is applied. If a fingerprint or mark isn't coming off, don't press harder on it. Instead, use a 50/50 mixture of white vinegar and distilled water, again lightly wetting a soft cloth with the solution. It will be safe for the screen material but dissolve stuck-on dirt better.

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