5 Simple Steps to Keep Your Computer Humming

5 Simple Steps to Keep Your Computer Humming

(Part 2 of a series)

Hopefully, Part 1 of this series convinced you of the importance of keeping your computer system clean and dust-free, so your Mitchell 1 management software (and everything else) will keep on humming. Ready to get started?

Here are the simple step-by-step instructions:

  1. First, back up everything. I know, all you’re going to do is a little cleaning, but accidents happen, and you could drop a screwdriver on your hard disk, or even drop the hard disk. Play it safe, back up. Don’t wait – do it now.
  2. Next, shut down the system and unplug it. If you don’t have plenty of room to work, disconnect all of the cables and take the box to a large table.
  3. Now take off the cover and ground yourself to the box. For $5 or $10 you can pick up a grounding wrist strap (try Radio Shack or similar), which wraps around your wrist and clips to the computer. It’s a very important tool, since cleaning the machine will generate static electricity, which can seriously damage the chips.
  4. Use a small paintbrush (1-inch wide is good) to dislodge the dust on the components, and then vacuum it off. You can get a mini vacuum cleaner designed for computer work, or small attachments for a regular vacuum cleaner. Use an attachment with a brush on the end to suck out as much dust as possible. You should take off the CPU fan so you can get into the heat sink, and you will probably have to remove cards to clean them.
  5. After you have vacuumed out the dust, reverse the cleaner and blow off the remaining dust. Then check to make sure you got it all, clean up any dust you missed, and reassemble the machine.

Sparkling clean!

That’s it! Please consider making this simple task part of your regular computer maintenance routine. Think of it as spring cleaning for your computer. It’s quick and easy, and could save you untold time and money if your system were to overheat and crash.

About the Author

John Dwulet

John Dwulet is the Senior Product Manager for Mitchell 1’s shop management software systems, including Manager SE and Manager Enterprise. He also serves as a trainer for Mitchell 1’s popular Management Training Workshops, and is an administrator of the shop management discussion forum. He joined Mitchell 1 in 1992 as a tech support agent and has held a variety of positions including quality assurance engineer, system integration analyst and corporate trainer.