Cleaning laptop and smartphone spills and stains
Things you’ll need:
- Microfibre cloths
- Dry rice of silica gel
- Distilled water
- Screwdrivers or disassembly tools
- Electronic circuit cleaner
Swift Action is Key!
- If possible, turn off your electronic device and remove the battery or charger plug. This is to prevent your laptop or smartphone from short-circuiting due to the spilt liquid.
- Flip your device upside down and shake it gently to allow liquid to drain.
- If you have tools at hand, disassemble your device to separate the wet components from the dry parts.
- Fill a bowl or bag with dry rice and place the wet components in it. Alternatively, you can place packets of silica gel on top of them. These will help to absorb the moisture. For smartphones or devices that are hard to disassemble, place the entire device in dry rice or silica gel.
- Make sure that all components are completely dry before you remove them. Apply some electronic circuit cleaner onto a microfibre cloth and clean the components gently to remove any stains. Alternatively, you can use distilled water, but do not use any substances on internal components.
- When all components are clean and dry, reassemble your device.
This process may take as much time as two days, especially if the spill is severe. There is no harm in trying these methods to save an expensive device, especially if you have a budget constraint. Meanwhile, general surface spills can with easily cleaned with a microfibre cloth and left to air dry.
Some Warnings to Keep in Mind
- It is better to seek professional help if you’re in doubt—regardless in the disassembling or cleaning process.
- Before you proceed, be mindful that disassembling your device may lead to the invalidation of the manufacturer’s warranty.
- Never disassemble an electrical device if it is still connected to a power socket.
- We strongly advise against the use of hairdryers or any other devices to quicken the drying process. You could potentially damage your device.