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The keyboard is one of the most important pieces of equipment in any office environment, but over time it gets clogged up with dirt and grime, to the point where it is practically unusable. Dust is one of the key culprits, and can be easily dealt with, using a soft brush or small vacuum cleaner.

Germs, however, are a different story. An alcohol solution is usually best, but don’t use ethyl solutions as they will gradually remove the lettering on the keys – anything that is about 60% alcohol or more is fine. Also make sure you don’t pour the alcohol onto the keyboard directly as it could damage the inner workings – instead, use a damp cloth.

A dirty keyboard is one of the leading contributors to illness in the office, and so it is vital to know how to keep them clean. Don’t become comfortable with disinfectant sprays, as many of them are very strong, and it is not a good idea to have your hands in contact with them for very long – so they aren’t ideal for use on a keyboard.

Something else that is a high contributor to germs on keyboards are spills. Not only does this affect your hygiene, it also leads to sticky keys, a hugely irritating problem. If you spill something on your keyboard, the first thing to do is unplug it and, after moving the keyboard, mop up the liquid. Avoiding sticky keys is the real task; to do this, simply remove the keys and clean the keyboard thoroughly. This is easy to do with either a butter knife or your fingernail, as long as you are careful not to break the brittle plastic. Next, wash the keys with cotton swabs, and press the keys back into their allocated position.

Another spillage that may occur on your keyboard is food; these crumbs can stick under keys, and are a huge source of bacteria. You can clean this in a similar way to before, but after popping off the keys you have the option to use a vacuum to flush everything out.

The final keyboard cleaning method is using a soft-bristled toothbrush to clean it out, using a little bit of alcohol on the keyboard, and some soapy water for the keys.

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