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Computer maintenance is an important part of having a smooth running computer. Cleaning a motherboard, in particular, is a task many people avoid because it can be confusing and difficult. But don’t worry- we’ve got you covered.

You may clean the motherboard using compressed air and isopropyl alcohol. Also, you can clean it using a blower or a vacuum cleaner. Start by shutting down the computer, opening it, and using a bristle brush to loosen the dust. Blow compressed air across the motherboard to remove the dirt.


Is It Safe To Wash The Motherboard?

Washing the motherboard is risky. It can create short circuits and result in an accident. Worse still, it could damage your computer. But you can still clean it using an alcohol-based solution. However, you can never wash the motherboard with water. Water will damage the components on the motherboard.

However, you can clean the motherboard using isopropyl by following the following steps.

First, you may need to have the right concentration of isopropyl alcohol. It should contain 99 percent Isopropyl alcohol. Isopropyl is less conductive if it is 99 percent. Anything less may contain too much water that it could damage your motherboard.

Before you apply the liquid, you must dust off the motherboard. It is a delicate process that requires the use of a soft brush.

Sometimes, it may require that you pour a bit of the alcohol on the motherboard to remove certain types of stains.

If any sticky materials are difficult to remove, apply isopropyl on the cotton swab and remove the dirt. However, it’s recommended to use a cotton swab instead of straight up pouring the alcohol to clean the motherboard. That way you don’t pour too much isopropyl.

Here is the summary of the steps involved:

Step 1 – Before you clean the motherboard, ensure to shut down the computer and plug it out of the power source.

Step 2 – Remove the motherboard from the computer.

Step 3 – Blow compressed air across the board to remove dust particles and air

Step 4 Use a clean bristle to remove any sticky particles

Step 5 If you use isopropyl alcohol onto the motherboard, ensure that it dries completely before connecting it to the source of power. You may use a cotton swab or a cotton ball with some isopropyl on it to clean it.

Step 6 You will then need to assemble the computer back.

But never clean your computer using water. It will damage the motherboard and may even lead to an accident . If water finds its way into the motherboard, you will see water spots, including corrosion around the soldered joints.

You will also see discoloration on the board, which is a sign of corrosion.

So, if water gets on the computer by accident, ensure to hold it upside down and wipe it dry. Also, you may need to remove the battery and other peripheral devices when cleaning the motherboard. It ensures that all the components remain dry.

Can I Use A Brush To Clean The Motherboard?

You can use a paintbrush to clean the motherboard gently. First, you need to blow the dust off using compressed air. Also, you may use a vacuum cleaner to suck the dust particles before cleaning it using a brush.

But the brush must be soft and bristle before you use it to clean the motherboard. Also, it requires that you remain cautious since you can easily damage some components.

Further, you must ensure that no brush hairs remain behind after cleaning. Last, check and ensure that the brushes don’t carry static electricity.

How To Clean A Motherboard?

The best way to clean your motherboard entails many steps. But the most important ones are:

1. Turn the PC off and remove it from the power socket

2. Open the case and unscrew the motherboard

3. Use compressed air to blow the air off

4. Use the cotton swab to remove any dust build-up on the fans

Before you clean the motherboard, it may be necessary that you prepare beforehand. Firstly, you may need to remove the cables and any other peripheral devices attached to the unit.

The peripherals include video cables, audio cables, and USB cables. You may keep the power cable connected because it grounds the PC.

However, if there is any canned air or moisture, it can be problematic if the components remain connected to the power source during the cleaning exercise.

Gather the tools you will need to open your computer to allow you to access and clean the motherboard. You will need a compressed air can, screwdrivers, and a soft bristle brush.

Other items you may need include a cleaning cloth, cotton swabs, thermal paste, and scissors.

You will then need to move your computer to a well-ventilated area and subject it to a thorough cleaning (recommended to do it outside). This will help you blow out dust without risking inhaling it.

Also, if you blow the dust in an enclosed environment, it may settle back on the motherboard.

Use the brush to clean the motherboard and soften the dirt. You may then need to blow off the dust using the vacuum can. Blow the dust out of the PC while allowing the vacuum to suck the most stubborn dust.

Clean the peripheral parts of the motherboard and release a burst of air in areas with a lot of dust build-up. Remove the dust particles that have attached themselves in the RAM and around other components.

If there is still some dust, dip a piece of cloth in isopropyl alcohol and wipe it gently.

Also, remember to clean the ports, fans, and other enclosures that may hide dust particles.

Also, clean the fans, the ports, and any other enclosed area. If the fan is cranked up, use a cotton swab with isopropyl to clean the blades. Once you finish, give the fans a quick spin.

It helps you to test if the blades are moving freely. If they are not moving freely, it may be necessary that you replace the fans.

clean motherboard

How Often Should You Clean Your Motherboard?

Cleaning the motherboard as often as possible is a good thing. It keeps your PC healthy and ensures that it serves you efficiently.

However, make it a habit to remove the dust regularly. Do it at least once in 3-6 months. Also, if you live in a dusty environment or you keep pets at home, it may be necessary to dust the motherboard every three months.

Further, if you keep your computer on the floor, you will need to clean it often. Keeping it on the floor allows dust, skin cells, hair, and carpet particles to be sucked in. These particles are likely to affect the performance of your computer.

If you also smoke, burn tar, ash, or any other gunk, it may build up in the computer and make it inefficient.

So, cleaning the computer of these elements should be done every 3- 6 months. If a pet sheds often, you may need to clean your motherboard regularly.

But if you don’t smoke and you keep the PC off the ground, you do not need to clean the motherboard often. Also, if you do not keep pets, then cleaning the motherboard can be done once every 6  months.

But if your PC heats and gets hotter than normal, consider cleaning it to remove the build-up or any accumulated dust.


Cleaning a computer is essential if you want it to remain efficient and offer you quality service. Ensure to clean the motherboard every 3-6 months.

Using a damp cloth can give better results. But as you clean the motherboard, it is vital to ensure that it does not contact water.

Droplets of water conduct electricity and so they can easily damage the motherboard. Regular cleaning removes spills and other sticky substances.

You can also choose to clean the motherboard using compressed air. Lastly, you can use a dust buster or vacuum cleaner. But cleaning using a vacuum can result in static which could damage the computer.