Computer cleaning issue




I would like to know if anybody knows cleaning products for the internal parts of a computer. The house where I lived got almost burned last week. The apartment where I lived didnt burn. However, there is a black residue on everything. It is very sticky but it comes off easily in most surfaces with the help of water or a cleaning product. Every part of my computer( motherboard, graphics card, cd writer, etc) is covered by the smoked or residue left by it. I am pretty sure that the computer works but I do not want to use it until I clean it.

Please let me know any suggestions or feedback on this.

Thanks a lot


hardware monkey
i say you're being smart by not using it until you clean it.

but how you would go about smartly cleaning a video card or motherboard escapes me. i don't think you can dunk the parts in anything or else water could maybe get in the capacitors..? everything else i can imagine would be fine, as long as you removed the fans beforehand and let everything dry for days.
I don't think there's any problem with water i capacitors, unless you have some strong solvant in the water. Just let it dry really well and watch out for possible pockets inside bigger parts where stuff can stay. Don't submerge hdd:s and such.


OSNN Advanced
Use an Airduster to blast away the dirt and a very soft brush to brush away the bits stuck to the surface of the boards.


Thanks everybody for ur feedback. I think I will try the Airduster and water in most parts. Lets just hope it works. I let u know how did it go.

dave holbon

OSNN Veteran Addict
Don’t use an air duster as they electro-statically charge the motherboard in ways that could be damaging especially if some parts are damp. If your MB has suffered from (say) a chip-pan fire where grease or other things have been deposited on it I would use a solvent spray (Isopropyl Alcohol) remembering that this is highly inflammable and must not be breathed in, COSH regulations.

Remove all the modules from the board including the CPU and memory modules, apply the spray, wait for about ten minutes and the wipe clean. Then wait for about twenty-four hours and re-clean the board. It should then work but don’t bet on it so use a power supply that you can afford to lose.


OSNN Veteran Addict
Never use water to clean electronics. It is a very bad idea. It does not evaporate near fast enough and tap water has minerals in it that will leave conductive deposits on the MB. Worst is when the water gets underneath ICs. It takes for ever to get out.

Use Isopropyl alcohol with a soft brush then flush it throughly. Its what we use on $100 million dollar airplanes. Pressure sprays just force the debris under the ic's and between pins.

The sprays can be bad too. Static electricity, dissolved parts or labels, evaporate too fast thermally shocking the components. They are also toxic. Don't beleive me, spray a ****load in a small room and see how fast you start coughing and how long the cough lasts. An idiot did it in the office areas a few weeks back. He was hacking for an hour.


OSNN Veteran Addict
PS If you have renters insurance you get a new PC, clothes, etc. from the smoke damage. :)

The Optical drives may not clean up, possibly the HD too if smoke got inside (they're not hermetically sealed. They may work now but will wear out or die in a while. The carbon deposits will act as abrasives.

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