How to Clean the Inside of a Laptop? 5 Simple Steps!

Your laptop may look clean on the outside because you always make sure that you are dusting it out whenever it’s possible. However, that might not be the case with your laptop’s internals as the insides might actually be quite dusty. This can lead to performance problems on the part of your laptop as dust can actually make it harder for the machine to cool itself down. So, how do you clean the inside of a laptop?

Clean the inside of a laptop by opening it and by using a small dusting brush that will dust any dirt off the insides. You can also use a small and gentle can of compressed air to blow the dust off. For those who can’t open their laptops, you may want to use a can of compressed air near the vents.

Cleaning the inside of a laptop can actually be an easy job for those who can open their laptops as this involves minor dusting on your part once you discover how to open it. But we can’t say the same for those who have laptops that can’t be opened as you might need to do some extra things if you want to keep the insides of your laptop clean and free from dust and debris.

Dusty fan inside the laptop during servicing

Can the insides of your laptop get dirty?

When you own a laptop, the fact that you basically use it so much and carry it around makes it so prone to getting dirty on the outside. You will certainly notice this when the dust starts to settle on the laptop’s screen or when it can get on the keyboard and in between the keys. And no one wants to have a dirty laptop because of how it can actually hinder the visibility of the screen and also make it look aesthetically ugly.

Cleaning the outsides of the laptop is quite easy if you have a handy and small duster or brush that you can use to brush off any of the dust that has accumulated on the screen or on the keyboard. And if you have the sticky and slime-like material that you can use to clean the parts that are difficult to reach in between your keyboards, this can also be a good way for you to clean your laptop.

It certainly is easier to clean the outside of a laptop. So, if the outside of a laptop can get dirty, does that also mean that the insides can get dirty as well? After all, there are openings where dust can easily enter.

So, in that regard, yes, dust can actually get inside the laptop and make the internals dirty and dusty. In fact, dust isn’t your only problem because ants or other similar insects can actually get inside your laptop and try to make a home out of it whenever they want to find shelter and warmth. As such, it is needless to say that the insides of your laptop can get dirty. That also means that you also need to clean the insides of your laptop.

Now, it is important for you to understand that you need to keep the insides clean as well because this can affect the laptop’s performance. The laptop’s cooling system relies on venting the heat out of the laptop via the small openings where air can pass in and out.

Your laptop uses those air vents to keep the heat out of the laptop so that the internals won’t overheat and possibly get damaged. And even if your laptop’s internals won’t get damaged as a result of the heat, you would certainly notice a drop in its performance when the laptop is warmer than usual.

In that sense, it is important for you to also consider cleaning the insides of your laptop from time to time so that you can get the dust and the debris out of the air vents and from some of the more important parts of your laptop (especially the moving parts that need to move smoothly).

Cleaning the laptop cooler

How do you clean the insides of a laptop that can be opened?

If you are using a laptop that can be opened, follow these steps to clean your laptop’s insides:

  1. Open the bottom panel. Laptops with bottom panels that can be opened are usually kept in place by screws that you can safely unscrew using the appropriate screwdrivers. Meanwhile, some laptops may not have screws but can still be opened by prying the panel out a bit. Make sure that the laptop is turned off and that the battery is removed when you do this.
  2. After opening the laptop, flip it over and make sure that you are working on a gentle surface that will not damage the laptop’s screen while it is flipped over.
  3. You can use a duster or a brush to clean off some of the debris that has accumulated in some of the areas of your laptop. If there is large debris, you can use the duster or maybe even your bare hands. You won’t get shocked because the battery is not connected to it.
  4. When only scattered dust is left, use a can of compressed air to blow the dust out of the laptop. Make sure that you blow the dust out and not throughout the laptop because this basically means that the dust is still inside the machine. Do not use a vacuum cleaner when dusting your laptop because doing so can create static electricity that may end up damaging the laptop’s internal circuitry.
  5. After that is done, put everything back in place and make sure that you screw the panel back securely. Place your battery back and try turning the laptop on to see if it was left undamaged after cleaning it.

How do you clean the insides of a laptop that can’t be opened?

There are plenty of different laptops that cannot be opened because the manufacturer doesn’t want you to tinker with the insides on your own or replace parts with new ones that may be cheaper than the ones that the manufacturer sells. As such, laptops that cannot be opened are more difficult to clean. But you still can do your best to clean the laptop or, at the very least, dislodge some of the dust that may have built up near the air vents that are important for keeping your laptop cool.

So, the only thing you can do here is to grab a can of compressed air. Face the can of compressed air near the cooling vents and give it a few bursts to dislodge or possibly allow some of the dust to escape through the vents. With some luck, you will be able to remove some of the dust that has built up close to the air vents. But the thing you need to know here is that you won’t be able to take all of the dust out of a laptop that can’t be opened.


If your laptop is still under warranty and has free servicing, you can take it to the service center to have the internals cleaned. This is probably the safest way for you to clean the insides of a laptop that can’t be opened.


I'm Rob, the founder of I’m a Marine Corps vet with a master’s degree in Information Systems and have been working in the technology field for over a decade.

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