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Prolong the life of your system by dusting

Is your computer slowing down or making a lot of noise as it tries to work? The problem could be due to dust. Thanks to your system's intake fan, dust continuously settles on internal components, which in turn, traps heat. If left unchecked, this can result in overheating. Dust also increases the chances of static electricity damage. While you can't entirely eliminate this problem, you can certainly lessen the impact by routinely dusting your system.

Computer Dusting 101

The easiest and most effective way to dust your computer is by using a can of compressed air, which can be purchased at most computer and office supply stores. Depending on how dusty your system is, you may need more than one can. When using the can of compressed air on your system, follow these five steps:

  1. Power down and unplug your computer. Open the case and investigate – if your system has never been cleaned, there's a good chance it'll be very dusty.
  2. Follow the directions on the can and when spraying, hold it upright. Tilting the can or holding it at an angle can cause a buildup of condensation inside your system, which can cause damage if left unchecked.
  3. Spray the front vents, fans, CPU cooler, graphics cooler, heat sinks, power supply, rear vents, hidden/concealed spaces, and any other place where there is obvious buildup.
  4. Continue to spray until all of the dust is gone. For larger clumps of dust, you may need to remove these by hand.
  5. Close up your case and reboot. Upon rebooting, you should notice a difference in the way your fans respond. In most cases, they will spin faster, keeping internal components cooler over time.
  6. Repeat this process every three to six weeks. With less dust buildup, you will improve your computer's longevity, but if you avoid dusting, you risk fan failure and system overheating

Why we recommend the use of canned air

While it might seem easier to dust you computer without the help of canned air, we strongly advise against any other "home" remedies.

  • Using the upholstery attachment on your vacuum might quickly remove dust, but it will also create a great deal of static electricity, which can cause serious damage to internal components.
  • A feather duster, rag, or other household dusting tool will leave a residue on your components, and you will risk damaging them.
  • A handy wipe, wet rag or simply blowing on the system yourself is also not recommended, as you'll want to keep your components away from anything remotely damp.
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