How to Clean a Motherboard? Alcohol, Petrol or Water

The motherboard is the main part of a computer, be it a desktop or a laptop, and the performance of a PC is totally dependent on that, so we need to make sure that the motherboard is in good condition. This will affect your system’s overall performance, so you should clean your motherboard regularly to keep it in good working order.

As your computer ages, dust accumulates inside. The exhaust fan collects dust and then builds up near the vents and on the motherboard. If not removed regularly, dust can cause the computer to overheat and crash. It can even short-circuit and damage the motherboard.

Over time, dust, splashes, and sticky substances build upon your motherboard, which can ultimately affect the lifespan of your PC. So, in this article, we have explained how to clean and use a motherboard with any liquid.

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Equipment Required for Cleaning Motherboard

You must ensure that all of the following things you have, before starting the cleaning process. You can consider it as motherboard cleaning kit.

Some Steps on How to Clean a Motherboard:

  1. Lock out and completely shut down the computer, change the main electrical connection, and disconnect the plug and cables. If you don’t, then you are in danger and short circuit. But turn off the device motherboard, you will be safe from danger.  
  2. Disassemble its components on the PC and remove the motherboard. It helps if you do not need to root out all the removed stains; constantly, it will stimulate significant and powerful damage.  
  3. Use a blower to blow away stains and dirt, and use compressed air to remove dust and stubborn substances. Do not use a brush with stiff bristles, which could damage your computer.   
  4. After compressing the air, use isopropyl alcohol to thoroughly and thoroughly clean the motherboard. Alternatively, you can use a cotton swab to clean the motherboard with isopropyl alcohol. This method of dust removal may not be possible with compressed air.  
  5. You can dip the motherboard in rubbing alcohol for further cleaning.  
  6. Before installation, you can completely drain the motherboard and then set up the motherboard on your PC and connect it.  
  7. A well-thought-out and organized PC rollback comes back again to ensure the results of your work.

4 Best Ways to Clean a Motherboard

While some may ask if the motherboard can be vacuumed or cloth cleaned, these methods have risks: Vacuum cleaners can cause static electricity and damage the motherboard, and cloth can leave lint, and pressure may require for proper cleaning. This is not recommended. So, here are some best methods to clean the motherboard you should adopt. 

1) How to Clean the Motherboard with Compressed Air?

How to Clean the Motherboard with Compressed Air
  • The easiest and safest method to clean the motherboard is to use compressed air. You can buy a can of compressed air or use a so-called “blower” that compresses the air without heating it.
  • Then, after completely turning off the computer and disassembling it, blow away the dirt with compressed air. Sometimes, you may find that some of the dust particles are difficult to remove.
  • To do this, you can use a soft-bristled brush to aid in the process, use a soft brush to wash away the dust particles, and then use compressed air again to remove them completely. 

2) How to Clean a Motherboard with Alcohol Isopropyl?

  • If you are dealing with sticky spots, compressed air may not help. To remove these stubborn stains, wipe the motherboard with rubbing alcohol. This is a delicate process and must be done carefully to ensure the best results.
  • Note that the isopropyl alcohol you use for cleaning should be above 90% pure, ideally 99%. This liquid form is non-conductive and dries very quickly. Read below to understand the cleaning process better.

How to Use Isopropyl Alcohol to Clean Motherboards?


There is always debate about the best way to clean motherboards with alcohol. While some pour the liquid onto the motherboard by placing it in a bath of alcohol, others recommend using a cotton swab to absorb the liquid. The exact procedure depends on the type of stain/blemish you are dealing with.

To remove any sticky materials or large particles that are difficult to remove, we recommend using a cotton swab to apply isopropyl alcohol to remove dust particles. However, in extreme cases, some particles, such as coal or solder waste, may remain. This is when you can saturate the motherboard. You can also apply this method when the motherboard is completely discharged or malfunctioning due to a lot of dirt. 

3) How to Clean Motherboard with Thinner?

  • You can clean the motherboard with thinner solvent in the same way as with alcohol. The first step is to remove the motherboard from the PC. Next, remove the processor cover and remove the motherboard. 
  • Now use a cloth to remove dust from the surface of the motherboard. The cloth will remove dust, and you will see stains underneath. If you like, you can try rubbing off stubborn stains with a rag, but don’t be too harsh.
  • Thinner is an excellent solvent, mostly containing alcohol. Thus, it can easily remove stubborn stains and remove them easily. If the stain is small, you can dip Qtip in the solvent and rub gently. 
  • If the motherboard is too dirty, it should be cleaned with solvent. You can soak the motherboard in the solvent for about 5 minutes to dissolve the stain. 
  • Soaking the motherboard also spills into delicate areas that are difficult to clean. After dipping the motherboard in thinner, wipe off excess thinner with a cloth, then place it on a dry surface to dry. 
  • When the motherboard is completely dry, you can reinstall it on your computer.  

4) How Do I Clean the Motherboard with a Cleaning Spray?

  • Power off the PC and remove the side CPU cover. Removing the cover reveals the motherboard. Next, use a screwdriver to remove the motherboard from the PC. 
  • After removing the motherboard from the processor, use compressed air to blow the dust off the surface. You can also use compressed air with a brush to remove dirt from cracks and thinner areas on the surface of the motherboard. 
  • After removal, you can use a cleaning spray to brush the dirty areas of the motherboard lightly. Cleaning sprays often have a long, narrow tube-like extension so that users can easily reach the corners of the motherboard.
  • The stain should loosen as you spray. However, if the stain does not completely disappear from the surface, use a swab or cloth to remove the stain from the surface gently. 
  • After removing the stains, wipe the motherboard with a clean cloth to remove any remaining cleaning spray, make sure the motherboard is completely dry and reinstall it on your processor.

Check the Required Equipments for Cleaning

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Can You Use a Vacuum to Clean a Computer?

Can You Use a Vacuum to Clean a Computer

Never try to do this with a household vacuum cleaner. The suction force on the exhaust fan is too high. You can bend axes. You can try portable vacuum cleaners for this purpose. Do not use a vacuum cleaner. Vacuum cleaners can generate static electricity that can damage computer components. Vacuum cleaners can also produce enough suction to keep the fans spinning hard enough to damage them. Also, do not use napkins or rags.

Why Do I Need to Clean My Motherboard?  

Many people try to protect their computers from viruses and other malware, but most of us are not vigilant when it comes to cleaning and maintaining our computers. 

Stain Removing: 

We are not aware of this, but over time, dirt and grime tend to accumulate on various parts of the computer, such as the motherboard. If not cleaned properly, dust can also lead to stubborn stains. 

Preventing Corrosion: 

Dust can also cause corrosion and rust on various parts of the motherboard, which can cause permanent damage and reduce the performance of the motherboard. 

Saves You Money: 

Motherboards sometime fail and even require complete replacement. If you don’t take care of the motherboard, replacements can become more frequent, and the amount can be significant. Cleaning your motherboard can be a lot of work, but it will save you a lot of money and hassle in the long run.  

Preventing Disease from Dust Particles: 

Occasionally, germs from dirt on computer equipment can also cause illness in users. When the computer’s cooling fan spins, dust particles can be thrown into the air. As a result, when a person breathes this air for too long, dust particles can become sick over time, especially those with breathing problems. So, if you want to get the best performance and keep your computer running smoothly without any problems, clean your hardware regularly, especially your motherboard.  

When to Clean the Motherboard? 

Now that we have discussed the need to clean the motherboard and have outlined the step-by-step process, the most important question is how often the motherboard should be cleaned. The frequency of cleaning the motherboard depends on the use and environment in which you are installing the computer.


If you place the CPU in a cabinet or part of a computer desk, the chances of dust getting into the CPU and accumulating on the motherboard are greatly reduced. But if your processor is outdoors, dust can accumulate much faster on the surface of the motherboard. Therefore, the motherboard will need to be cleaned regularly.

Likewise, if you use your computer frequently and for a long time, your motherboard will need to be cleaned more frequently than a computer that is not used much. However, cleaning your motherboard is just as important as looking after another computer. Because the performance of your computer depends a lot on its efficiency.

Remember Some Cleaning Motherboard Tips:

  1. First, be sure to clean the motherboard at least once a year. 
  2. If your computer is still under warranty, talk to the manufacturer before applying any liquid to the motherboard. Ask them for help with the cleaning process, as the warranty may be void if you use rubbing alcohol to clean yourself. 
  3. Make sure the computer is completely turned off and off before cleaning. 
  4. Be sure to use 99% isopropyl alcohol to clean the motherboard.  Allow the motherboard to dry completely before turning the computer back on. 
  5. When in doubt, seek professional help to clean the motherboard. 
  6. Some fans will only rotate if you try to clean them with compressed air. Try using QTip or other objects to remove dust. 
  7. Compressed air is also good for cleaning the keyboard
  8. Use a blower to clean and dust the motherboard quickly. 
  9. Do not exceed 50 psi when using an air compressor.
  10. If the dough does not expand at this nominal pressure, remove the particles with a soft-bristled brush. 
  11. Be sure to discharge all static electricity. This can be done by touching the computer’s metal chassis or by using a commercially available ESD wrist strap (available online or at electronics stores). 
  12. Do not try to turn on the power to clean it. 
  13. If you have any questions about cleaning the motherboard, contact a technician or manufacturer for further instructions.

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Every computer enthusiast should learn how to clean a dirty motherboard, but be careful. Your best bet is to start with a non-working motherboard, so you must figure out the methodology before working on your computer.