Laptop cleaning kits
Though it’s tempting to give laptops a much-needed deep cleaning, it can be stressful choosing the right products. After all, laptops are expensive, and certain chemicals are harsh enough to permanently damage them. Fortunately, dedicated laptop cleaning kits exist.
These kits include sprays, wipes, scratch-free cloths, and tools to clean keyboards. Formulas for sprays and wipes are made with gentle yet effective ingredients, some of which are plant-derived. Cloths and devices are also gentle enough to remove surface dirt, dust, hair, or crumbs.
To find the right kit for your laptop, read our buying guide. We’re covering popular products and devices found in laptop cleaning kits, and we’re including a few recommendations at the end. Our favorite, Tech Armor’s Pro Cleaning Kit, features a water-gel formula that’s safe to use on all types of screens, including LCD, LED, AMOLED, and Retina.
What to know before you buy a laptop cleaning kit
A cleaning solution is considered a staple accessory in laptop cleaning kits. Formulas are usually sprayed, though some are gel-based or infused in pre-moistened wipes. It’s important to compare ingredients to make sure they’re conducive to cleaning the type of screen you have.
Many consumers gravitate toward formulas without alcohol, ammonia, or phosphates, since these are known to damage screens and surfaces with prolonged use. Some consumers with kids and pets prefer non-toxic or plant-derived formulas.
Microfiber cloths are super soft and won’t scratch or damage screens. They help dissolve oil and pick up dust, and remove tiny dirt particles. Microfiber cloths can be used either on their own for simple dusting, or in conjunction with a cleaning solution for deeper cleaning.
Brushes are useful for cleaning hard-to-reach areas, such as crevices between keys or inside fan vents. Certain brushes have long, far-reaching bristles, while others feature dual-sided designs. These may have bristles of different materials (such as plastic and silicone) to offer more than one method of cleaning.
Air blowing tools are either compressed air cans or hand-operated blowing devices. Compressed air cans offer an exceptional cleaning experience, but they’re not as cost-effective as blowing devices. In fact, the gentleness of blowing devices is a good thing, because their lower pressure means they’re less likely to damage fragile electronics.
What to look for in a quality laptop cleaning kit
Special cleaning solutions
Those who travel with their laptops — whether to a café or on a plane — may choose antibacterial cleaning solutions to keep germs at bay. Some people prefer using plant-based solutions since they’re non-toxic, alcohol-free and low-odor. Unfortunately, they’re far less effective at sanitizing.
Keyboard vacuums are adept at removing virtually anything that gets caught between keys: crumbs, hair, dust, and dander. They have slender nozzles to seamlessly maneuver between keys without causing them to pop off. Laptop users who are heavy beverage drinkers may prefer wet/dry vacuums capable of cleaning up accidental spills.
Cleaning gel consists of a gooey, malleable compound that’s sticky enough to remove surface dirt from keyboards. The gel offers a quick, mess-free method of cleaning, though it isn’t as far-reaching as brushes or vacuums. Many of these gels are non-toxic, eco-friendly, and biodegradable.
How much you can expect to spend on a laptop cleaning kit
Single products or kits that contain a couple of cleaning items cost $10 or less. Laptop cleaning kits closer to $20 typically include improved formulas as well as wipes, cloths, and some cleaning tools. Those priced above $25 may come with keyboard cleaning vacuums.
Laptop cleaning kit FAQ
Are compressed air cans safe to use?
A. They are, provided they’re used appropriately. Cans stipulate how far away to hold them from devices during sprays, as well as how to spray them — a series of short bursts of air or a single stream. Unfortunately, there are a few chemicals in compressed air cans. In the event they leak onto skin, it may result in a chemical burn.
Can I use laptop cleaning kits on video game consoles?
A. Many laptop cleaning kits can be used on consoles. With that said, refrain from using the cleaning solution near the disc trays and cartridge holes. Their chemicals, even gentle ones, may damage internal components.
What’s the best laptop cleaning kit to buy?
Top laptop cleaning kit
Our take: Comprehensive set that provides several options for cleaning laptops as well as devices and phones.
What we like: Alcohol-free formula fights bacteria and is safe for all electronics. Cleaning wipes can be used more than once.
What we dislike: Unreliable spray pumps can put a damper on use.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top laptop cleaning kit for the money
Our take: Affordable plant-based formula that’s a bestseller for its non-toxic formula.
What we like: Formula is free of VOCs and solvents. Leaves a residue-free and streak-free shine. Lasts through 1,500 sprays.
What we dislike: Some users feel the e-wipe cloths could be better quality.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
Our take: Reliable screen and electronic cleaning formula good at removing stubborn fingerprints.
What we like: Safe to use around kids since it’s odorless and free of ammonia and alcohol. Costs less than one cent per use.
What we dislike: Formula is not antibacterial like comparable laptop cleaners.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Sign up here to receive the BestReviews weekly newsletter for useful advice on new products and noteworthy deals.
Sian Babish writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
Copyright 2021 BestReviews, a Nexstar company. All rights reserved.