In Part 1 of this article, some of the potential problems your computer may encounter as a result of dust and its associated build-up were discussed. Part 2 will focus on preventative measures that can be taken to minimize the effects that dust and debris build-up can cause. Additionally, there is an ongoing discussion topic “Computer Filters- do I need them and where can I get them” that you can join to find additional information and have these and other questions answered.
The following recommendations can help reduce the likelihood of dust and other debris from becoming a problem to your computer.
- Try to avoid having the case set on the floor. Although dust and other debris will be airborne in nature, most of the particles are heavier than air and will eventually settle to the lowest point. Also, many newer cases have ventilation holes on the bottom of the case which can become blocked if the case is setting on a floor that is carpeted.
- Make sure there is adequate clearance between the other case ventilation areas (top, rear and sides) and their surroundings to allow proper airflow into and out of the case. This will maximize the cooling effect they are intended to provide and help minimize debris build-up.
- Try to avoid placing the computer case near any windows or doors that could allow outdoor air to be drawn into and circulated within the case. This is because outside air typically has more airborne particles than does indoor air.
- Make sure that all of the case intakes (fan locations and other ventilatation areas) that are intended to draw air into the case for cooling have filters. To determine if an opening is an intake or exhaust, simply take a piece of tissue and hold it up to the area. If it is drawn to the opening, then it is an intake area and should have a filter. If the tissue is pushed away from the opening, then that area is an exhaust and should not be covered by a filter.
- Does your computer case have filters? If so, they should be cleaned periodically. A weekly cleaning is recommended. If your case has no filters, it is recommended that you acquire filters for all the intake areas. You are invited to join the discussion “Computer Filters- do I need them and where can I get them?” and provide your input or ask questions you may have.
- Do a weekly inspection of all case openings to check for accumulated build-up. The longer between checks, the more accumulation will occur.
- Wipe down the outside of the case on a regular basis. However, you should first check to make sure that none of the openings have any kind of visible build-up. If there is any build-up present, it is recommended that you open the case and remove the build-up from the inside of the case towards the outside. Otherwise, if you attempt to just clean from the outside, you may inadvertently force any build-up present into the case.
- The inside of your computer case should be cleaned on a regular basis. Typically, 3 to 4 times a year is sufficient. Special care should be taken when cleaning the interior of your case. There are a number of articles available on the internet that explain how to safely clean your computer. If you are uncomfortable with the idea of cleaning the inside of your case, there are several local businesses, both storefront and home-based, that offer computer cleaning. The cleaning service can usually be performed at their place of business or at your home, although in some cases, home visits may incur a slightly higher fee.
For additional information or questions you may have about computer cleaning services or where to acquire computer dust filters, contact the author or visit his website.