Spring Cleaning Your PC

Pat yourself on the back for having made it through yet another Chicago winter but as every Illinoisan knows there is plenty to do now that the weather permits. One of those things should be spring cleaning, and this year might finally be time to clean out that old PC – both virtually and physically. If you aren’t particularly computer saavy, you might opt to let someone else physically clean it out as it could, if done incorrectly, destroy your computer. That said, below are some simply steps you can take to clean all the dust and debris out of your computer using a can of air:

  1. Shut down your computer fully, then unplug the cables. Take your computer to a well ventilated room or outside if possible.
  2. Remove the side panel of the computer. There may be a small thumb screw in the rear of the case that needs to be removed.
  3. Using your can of air (or an air compressor if you have one) blow out the computer starting at the top and working your way down. Blow the fans and all the openings from the inside of the PC to the outside.
  4. Once all the dust and big debris is out of the PC, use a vacuum to clean up your workspace. DON’T USE THE VACUUM FOR THE INSIDE OF THE PC. If there is still dust or stuck on crud you can try using a lint-free, microfiber cloth to get at it.
  5. Put the side panels back on.
  6. Plug in the PC and enjoy a clean PC.

Now, you should also take this opportunity to clear up junk from the Operating System. Here are some things you can do:

  1. Click the start button, search for disk clean up and run a disk cleanup. This will remove junk from your drive and leave you with more storage space. Be sure to click, “Clean up system files” to get everything.
  2. Review the installed applications on your PC and uninstall apps that you no longer use or need.
  3. Empty your recycle bin. Either navigate to your desktop and right click the recycle bin, or double click it for more options.
  4. Run CCleaner and remove general junk.