Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
PC Maintenance. Removing Interior Dust Buildup.
Old 03-20-2013, 12:16 PM   #1
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
John Galt III's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,283
PC Maintenance. Removing Interior Dust Buildup.

Has anyone out there cleaned out the dust buildup near the fan?

I opened up my 12(?) year old IBM NetVista PC (I know, its old, but it works) and I see some dust accumulation on the fan blades and on the fins the fan blows air through, that cool the motherboard.

Some articles on the Net say to use a can of compressed air to blow away the dust from the fan and the fins, but what if the dust just gets stuck in between some other, more susceptible electronic connection?

The passages between the fins are still open, so air is getting through, but they have a layer of dust on them.



Thanks,

JG3
__________________

__________________
John Galt III is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 03-20-2013, 12:37 PM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
walkinwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Denver
Posts: 2,675
I use my vacuum cleaner and so far, it has't sucked anything out of the computer. Your computer, if it has a variable speed fan, will run much quieter after you clean out the dust. Also look for a fan on top of the processor - that accumulates dust too.

Be careful using the vacuum cleaner on your keyboard though - the chicklet keys get sucked out pretty easily.
c.
__________________

__________________
walkinwood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2013, 01:59 PM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
easysurfer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 7,882
I used both a small computer vacuum and a blower (not compressed air, but a rechargeable blower I got a few years back). I've found the blower worked better. Not 100% on all the dust but better than vacuuming.

This is what I use (for about $10 several years back):

http://www.amazon.com/Turbo-Air-Comp.../dp/B002OXMMY8
__________________
Have you ever seen a headstone with these words
"If only I had spent more time at work" ... from "Busy Man" sung by Billy Ray Cyrus
easysurfer is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2013, 02:05 PM   #4
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 13,249
I used air from my air compressor...

The fan went from being real loud to quiet...
__________________
Texas Proud is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2013, 02:25 PM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
sengsational's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 3,815
I routinely use a leaf blower. Looks like new!

I take the cover off, set the box and cover outside, and hit 'em from all angles.
__________________
sengsational is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2013, 02:27 PM   #6
Full time employment: Posting here.
Tyro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Upstate
Posts: 699
Many sources warn against using vacuums for cleaning, yet some places sell attachments intended specifically for cleaning computers.

We've used a combination of compressed air and the small computer vacuum attachments, depending on components, accessibility, and practicality.

I guess my suggestion would be to read up on the subject and proceed with caution and common sense.

cleaning computer guts - Google Search

Tyro
__________________
Yeah well, that's just, ya know, like, your opinion, man. ~ The Dude
Tyro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2013, 04:33 PM   #7
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern IL
Posts: 18,255
Watch out for static electricity. I think some of the cautions with a vacuum are the nylon brushes and air currents can build up a lot of static. I would not attempt this during dry weather - esp if you are getting even small shocks after walking across a carpet.

Touch something grounded on the chassis as you go. Ground anything you are using as well as you can.

-ERD50
__________________
ERD50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2013, 05:31 PM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
ls99's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 4,792
Just a couple of days ago opened the case on the Dell Precision 650 Xeon tower. Using a fine bristled brush stirred the dust and let the vacuum collect it. Last was done about 5 years ago.
__________________
There must be moderation in everything, including moderation.
ls99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-20-2013, 06:13 PM   #9
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
imoldernu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Peru
Posts: 4,616
My experience has been that desktops are much less fragile than you would think. I use Qtips and alcohol on fans that are really crudded up. Toothpicks on fins. The only part that I've had problems with is taking the heatsink off the processor chip. The silver paste is necessary for good contact. Normal care in changing drives, memory or cards is enough. Diagrams on wiring, if necessary. Usually, the hardest part is taking off the cover, since each manufacturer has their own idea about that.

Now... laptops are a very different story. Taking one apart to replace the Cmos battery, or any part other than the hard drive or the memory chips is not for the faint of heart. You need a good light, a magnetic screwdriver, good eyes, steady hands, and a lot of courage to take a laptop apart. Screen problem?... fugeddaboutit. If you've ever stripped a laptop, you understand why the cost is so much higher.
Just opening the case of a laptop can be exciting... never just screws... always snap in plastic tabs... That first snap, when one breaks, is a real downer.

I'd use an air can on a laptop but only on the keyboard, and only on parts that have a cover. Opening the case is a last resort.

YMMV...
__________________
Today is the oldest you've ever been, and the youngest you'll ever be again. - Eleanor Roosevelt
imoldernu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-21-2013, 04:46 AM   #10
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
bUU's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Georgia
Posts: 1,901
The real danger from dust is not build-up on the fan but rather on the CPU. I think the best approach would be compressed air to get the dust airborne, and a vacuum nozzle set safely apart from the device trying to pull the dust away.
__________________
bUU is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-21-2013, 08:27 AM   #11
Moderator
Walt34's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Eastern WV Panhandle
Posts: 16,494
I just use an air compressor with the regulator set to about 20 psi, outside of course.
__________________
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
Walt34 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-21-2013, 09:55 AM   #12
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
John Galt III's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,283
Thanks for all the suggestions and experiences. What I finally did was just unplug it, wipe down the flat smooth surfaces (no electronics) with a damp paper towel, then put a newspaper in the bottom of the pc, then used a plastic drinking straw to blow the dust off the circuit boards, then blew the dust out of the fins above the heat sink, which was where the major dust problem was. Removed newspaper, deposited all the lint-like debris into trash can, and repeated the process a few more times.

Did all this inside, at the usual computer location, since there wasn't really a ton of dust, and I just vacuumed up the rug afterwards, and wiped off the computer table.

Started it up, and listened to the fan. The fan sounds about the same, maybe a little bit quieter.
__________________
John Galt III is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-21-2013, 10:10 AM   #13
Full time employment: Posting here.
Tyro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Upstate
Posts: 699
Quote:
Originally Posted by Walt34 View Post
I just use an air compressor with the regulator set to about 20 psi, outside of course.
...You mean you're dispersing all that dust & dirt into the ENVIRONMENT‽‽‽‽‽
__________________
Yeah well, that's just, ya know, like, your opinion, man. ~ The Dude
Tyro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-21-2013, 11:01 AM   #14
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
ls99's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 4,792
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyro View Post
...You mean you're dispersing all that dust & dirt into the ENVIRONMENT‽‽‽‽‽
Is it not where it cam from?

Return to sender. Um, there is a song about that, isn't there.
__________________
There must be moderation in everything, including moderation.
ls99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2013, 04:54 PM   #15
Full time employment: Posting here.
Redbugdave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Columbia, SC
Posts: 959
I also use the air compressor on the computers, fridge, freezers, dryer, TV's, dog, shoe insides, auto air filters, etc.
__________________

__________________
"I either want less corruption, or more chance to participate in it." Ashleigh Brilliant
Redbugdave is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:34 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.