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How often do you clean out your PC?

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Technique    35

By clean out i'm talking something like compressed air or similar approach. Just a post from yesterday which made me wonder how often others tended to their machines?

 

I try to do mine once per year in that - the tower gets disconnected, taken downstairs & i start removing various components, giving everything a wipe down and a blow out with compressed air before replacing, putting back together & refitting.

 

Throughout the year i'll remove the mesh cover to the front fan and blow out the collected dust but the 'big clean' generally gets done when i take 2 weeks off work in December. unfortunately i was really busy this December so i didn't get round to it.

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Brandon H    2,917

i can tell you I don't do it nearly often enough. especially since I own a cat for about a year now.

 

probably been a year or 2 since i cleaned out my tower :blushing: I need to go buy a can of air haha

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tsupersonic    1,804

I don't use my desktop much (once a week if that). When I do use it, I use compressed air on the fans. I don't take it apart to do any thorough cleaning though. The case has a window, and it looks pretty clean inside. I do dust my house regularly, and run an air cleaner. I'll also take compressed air to laptops a few times a year. 

 

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+jnelsoninjax    11,855
1 hour ago, Brandon H said:

i can tell you I don't do it nearly often enough. especially since I own a cat for about a year now.

 

probably been a year or 2 since i cleaned out my tower :blushing: I need to go buy a can of air haha

I happen to have 4 cats, so I find myself cleaning the case out every 3 months or so. I also do not have to use compressed air in a can, I have an electric pump that was used to inflate airbeds, and it puts out allot of air and works very good for that purpose.

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Mindovermaster    1,983

I do mine about every 2 months. The inside is usually rather clean, It's the dust filters on the front and bottom that get filthy.

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DevTech    1,517
2 hours ago, Technique said:

By clean out i'm talking something like compressed air or similar approach. Just a post from yesterday which made me wonder how often others tended to their machines?

 

I try to do mine once per year in that - the tower gets disconnected, taken downstairs & i start removing various components, giving everything a wipe down and a blow out with compressed air before replacing, putting back together & refitting.

 

Throughout the year i'll remove the mesh cover to the front fan and blow out the collected dust but the 'big clean' generally gets done when i take 2 weeks off work in December. unfortunately i was really busy this December so i didn't get round to it.

Your procedure is ridiculous, inefficient, and wasting time out of your life you could invest in being a proper Mad Scientist. :)

 

Build Stuff, Don't Clean Stuff!

 

Easy as 1, 2, 3:

 

1. Don't take your computer apart, that just slightly increases risk of damaging it for zero benefit.

 

2. Unless you live in Chernobyl, dust is not harmful to electronics, so don't let it "bug" you. Once a year is usually fine for a 1 minute air blow.

 

3. A blanket of dust can act as an insulator and inside the tiny fins of heat sinks can block air flow. So all that is needed is a can of air to blow dust out of CPU heat sink (or water radiator), clear the dust of the mobo (power regulators to CPU) and blow it off the top of the hard drives and finally clear out the fins of the GPU heat sink. It can still look quite dirty inside the case after all that and really just leave it that way. Your job is done!

 

---------------------

 

Note: Laptops live in a thinner margin in terms of heat dissipation and need more attention.

 

 

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ThaCrip    597
Posted (edited)

My computer is running pretty much all of the time.

 

with that said... I use a portable air compressor to blow out the dust from my PC at least twice a year, maybe three times or so. I noticed dust accumulates a bit quicker inside once I added a intake fan (blows across the hard drives) as it was just a exhaust fan for years.

 

bottom line... if someones computer is running 24/7, blow it out 2-4 times a year (i.e. at least once every 6 months or no more often than once every 3 months) but three times a year (i.e. once every 4 months) is probably the sweet spot.

 

p.s. I agree with DevTech in that you don't want to physically remove anything inside your tower as it just raises risk of physical damage. just opening case and blowing out the heatsinks and general case is enough.

Edited by ThaCrip
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Mindovermaster    1,983
5 minutes ago, ThaCrip said:

but basically I think anyone who leaves their computer running 24/7 or close to it almost surely has to blow it out AT LEAST once a year

 

5 minutes ago, ThaCrip said:

but for those people who have really dusty places and leave their computer on all of the time (or thereabouts) you might have to blow it out every 3-4 months or so.

 

That's a double negative. If your computer runs 24/7, you should clean it more often than once a year...

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bikeman25    63

I usually clean mine about every 3 months,  Desktop runs almost 24/7, with off a few times a year, or when gone

 

Uses the XPower Air Duster

 

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ThaCrip    597
Posted (edited)

@Mindovermaster

 

I already said I do mine 2-3 times a year (maybe 4 times tops) basically as I know my PC's dust accumulation pretty well. I was just saying even for those lazy types of people who have their computers running 24/7 who like to slack off should do a BARE minimum of once a year although I suggest at least twice (i.e. blow out PC case at least once every 6 months if you leave it on all of the time) as a general rule although 3 times should be pretty safe given your looking at around 4 months between cleanings.

 

but what's wrong with the second quote I said? ; as I said for people with really dusty houses, and leave their computer on 24/7, to blow their computer out once every 3-4 months or so. surely, you can't think this is bad advice because even the dusty places I can't imagine their heatsinks would be so packed full of dust in 3-4 months of time to where their hardware would become damaged over lack of cooling.

Edited by ThaCrip

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Mindovermaster    1,983

Well, unless you are in a clean room, you are going to get dust in your system no matter what. No matter if it's in a clean house or a woodworking room, you are going to get dust.

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+JHBrown    13,183

Every two weeks. 😎 It's my military OCD dust issues. You will always catch me cleaning something around the house. It's a quick process with my trusty, DataVac.

 

lnh1qQ7.jpg

 

 

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Mindovermaster    1,983
Just now, JHBrown said:

Every two weeks. 😎 It's my military OCD dust issues. It's a quick process with my trusty, DataVac.

 

lnh1qQ7.jpg

 

 

@warwagon uses that, too :)

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ThaCrip    597
Posted (edited)

@Mindovermaster

 

Agreed, but no one is questioning that.

 

let me bottom line it... if someone leaves their PC running 24/7, I suggest blowing the dust out of it thoroughly 2-4 times a year, 3 times (i.e. once every 4 months) is probably my suggested default for most people although once every 6 months might be okay in some situations especially if someone wants to slack a bit and cleaning it more often than once every 3 months is overkill for the vast majority of people in my estimations.

Edited by ThaCrip

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+JHBrown    13,183
4 minutes ago, Mindovermaster said:

@warwagon uses that, too :)

They're awesome. I've been using it for about 10 years now. I've only had one go bad in that time (short in the cord where it connects to the body). Saves so much money compared to those compressed air cans.

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techbeck    6,873
Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, JHBrown said:

Every two weeks. 😎 It's my military OCD dust issues. You will always catch me cleaning something around the house. It's a quick process with my trusty, DataVac.

 

lnh1qQ7.jpg

 

 

I have one of those at work.  Loud but much cheaper that buying compressed air.

 

As for desktop clean outs, I keep mine up on my desk so it does not get dirty often.   I know people who keep theirs on the floor and it picks up everything.  I never take apart the PC at all.  To much work and to much of a risk of damaging something.  I hit the fans, heat sinks, and the PSU the most.

 

And be careful with air compressors unless they have a moisture trap.    The ones at my work (i work at a manufacturing plant) does.  So when I am on the shop floor doing work, I will just unplug the PC, remove the cover, and take it over to the air compressor.  Luckily we mostly have thin clients in the shop that are fanless.  Desktops get this moist???  thick dust coating at times.  I opened desktops where all fans are seized.  That is a fun time.

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wrack    455

When I had a desktop tower, I had a custom cloth cover made for it which pretty much ensured that it was clean as new for at least 3 years.

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ThaCrip    597
2 minutes ago, wrack said:

When I had a desktop tower, I had a custom cloth cover made for it which pretty much ensured that it was clean as new for at least 3 years.

If something blocks dust that well it almost seems like it would put a decent load on the fans pulling the air in or out of the case. don't seem like it would be good for the fans(?)

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+JHBrown    13,183
6 minutes ago, wrack said:

When I had a desktop tower, I had a custom cloth cover made for it which pretty much ensured that it was clean as new for at least 3 years.

A cloth cover while using the PC? Unless you mean dust on the exterior.

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DevTech    1,517
46 minutes ago, ThaCrip said:

@Mindovermaster

 

Agreed, but no one is questioning that.

 

let me bottom line it... if someone leaves their PC running 24/7, I suggest blowing the dust out of it thoroughly 2-4 times a year, 3 times (i.e. once every 4 months) is probably my suggested default for most people although once every 6 months might be okay in some situations especially if someone wants to slack a bit and cleaning it more often than once every 3 months is overkill for the vast majority of people in my estimations.

That's even a bit too much attention to the matter!

 

I run 10 computers 24/7 and I'm sure I will add more, just running various servers and stuff and some on desk and some on floor and most with clear windows on sides so I can peer inside so they are lucky if they get that 1 minute air can once per year. 

 

On my main computers, I mount the water radiators externally so I can air blow them whenever I see dust accumulating.

 

Looking around my home office, I can see 3 air cans visible right now, so they are always handy, but mainly it is laptop intakes that might clog.

 

The main thing is not to obsess over it. If you see dust, blow it away in seconds and then forget about it.

 

Again, as long as you don't live in Chernobyl, dust is a NothingBurger!

 

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cork1958    1,668
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, techbeck said:

I have one of those at work.  Loud but much cheaper that buying compressed air.

 

As for desktop clean outs, I keep mine up on my desk so it does not get dirty often.   I know people who keep theirs on the floor and it picks up everything.  I never take apart the PC at all.  To much work and to much of a risk of damaging something.  I hit the fans, heat sinks, and the PSU the most.

 

And be careful with air compressors unless they have a moisture trap.    The ones at my work (i work at a manufacturing plant) does.  So when I am on the shop floor doing work, I will just unplug the PC, remove the cover, and take it over to the air compressor.  Luckily we mostly have thin clients in the shop that are fanless.  Desktops get this moist???  thick dust coating at times.  I opened desktops where all fans are seized.  That is a fun time.

All of my computers are well off the floor. Don't really get to dirty. Have seen computers inside the lower compartment of computer stands that are absolutely so filthy I can't believe the fans can still spin.

 

As far as cleaning out computer I can't even remember the last time I did! I know I never have any of my laptops! All 4 of my desktops are brand new, so don't have to worry about those one's! Never had any heating issues or anything I could relate to dirty computers. Heck, I've never had a hardware failure in my life. Kind of a lie. I did have 1 monitor go dead on me several years ago. Was a used one to start with.

 

Should add that none of my computers are ever on all day and on a different one every day. Have relatives and friends that use one of them, here at house, every once in a while, but not often or for long.

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techbeck    6,873
3 minutes ago, cork1958 said:

As far as cleaning out computer I can't even remember the last time I did! I know I never have any of my laptops!

I rarely see a really dirty laptop.  We have 15 or so year old laptops at work running some legacy software.  I have to open these up from time to time to repair something, but they have always been pretty clean.

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DevTech    1,517

My conclusion after reviewing this thread:

 

1. Silicon Lifeforms don't have an opinion about dust and it generally doesn't bother them in any way.

 

2. Dust is much more connected to illuminating the individual psychology of Humans that care for their Silicon Friends.

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cork1958    1,668
1 hour ago, techbeck said:

I rarely see a really dirty laptop.  We have 15 or so year old laptops at work running some legacy software.  I have to open these up from time to time to repair something, but they have always been pretty clean.

"It's not that I am lazy, it's that I just don't care"

 

A quote from what's under your name, techbeck. Kind of fits my opinion of the subject of this thread! LOL

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Mindovermaster    1,983

6e5.gif&f=1

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