Laptops get dirty fast and need cleaning. This is specifically for Apple macbook but it is probably safe for other laptops too if they have a glass or hard plastic screen cover.
For a basic cleaning you will need. You may as well just go buy these and put them aside if you’re a regular laptop user. It’s cheaper than buying a cleaning kit from the store. The materials for this should cost no more than $15 including a gallon of distilled water and soap, and it should last for many cleanings.
1) Two soft pieces of cloth – I recommend buying a yard of flannel and cutting off small pieces.
2) Water – Distilled, Reverse Osmosis, Filtered – You can use tap water if it is low in mineral content. If you are getting streaks on your screen after cleaning you should use distilled, RO or filtered, water.
3) Mild liquid soap (optional) – a very mild liquid soap (like Dr. Bronner’s) is good for cleaning off oil and grease. (Note: Apple recommends using water only, so do this at your own risk.)
4) Small cup
- Turn computer off and unplug it.
- Put your distilled water in the cup, enough to moisten the cloth. If there is grease or oil on your computer add a drop or two of mild liquid soap ( careful with this – too little soap is better than too much).
- Wet cloth lightly. It should not drip.
- Clean screen with the cloth. Push all the dust towards a lower corner and remove it.
- Rewet cloth and remove excess water.
- Now clean the keys and body
- If you used soap, get fresh (distilled) water , no soap, rinse cloth, rewet, remove excess moisture, and give it a fresh water wipe down to get any soap traces wiped clean.
- Using dry clean cloth, wipe off any remaining streaks and excess moisture.
The soap is only necessary for oily build up on the computer (because you thought you could eat barbeque chicken clean while working, you fool), and then too little is better than too much, so be careful if you use it. Water alone is fine in most cases.
For reference here is Apple’s instructions for cleaning Macbook: http://www.apple.com/support/macbookpro/care/ .