Introduction: Introduction to Hardware: Cleaning and Starting Work

Today I'm going to show you how to clean your computer, get the case off, and start work. This probably should have come before my previous tutorial [Click Here] but I forgot that you might need this help. Please do leave any comments with your thoughts, and feel free to check out the ads in the youtube video. It'd really help me out because doing these tutorials costs money, so I need to earn it.

Today you will need:
Canned air
You might need:
Screwdriver (Depends on computer case)
Vacuum cleaner (Up to you)
And you need one of the following:
String/Thread of some sort (preferred)
Identity/Credit/Debit card (Less preferred)
Laminating pouch and laminator (Not recommended)

Video version

Step 1: Exterior Cleaning: Method 1

The first method of cleaning the exterior case of your computer is using string/thread of any sort. This is my favorite method because it is the most efficient, and damages the paintwork the least.

Find any marks on your computer, take the string beneath your finger on top of the mark, and massage the blemish with the string until it starts to fade. Use reasonably firm pressure, but make sure it's even so you don't get a glare similar to one of a dent on your case.

If your paintwork scratches, take some toothpaste and rub it over some undamaged paintwork then slide it over to the damaged paintwork and repeat until the scratch becomes less visible.

Step 2: Exterior Cleaning: Method 2

My second preferred method of cleaning exterior blemishes is using an identity card such as a debit or credit card.
Go ahead and scrape the marks with the card until they are removed. If the paintwork is scratched, once again, use toothpaste to remove it by rubbing it over a non damaged area then wipe it over the damaged area

Step 3: Exterior Cleaning: Method 3

My least favorite method (laminated pouches) is something that would need its own instructable, so I can't explain it here in detail. The video could definitely explain it though. [Video]

Step 4: Case Opening Preperation

Before we open up the case, we need to ensure that we don't get a face full of dust because of all the dust floating around.

To do this, take a step back from your computer and spray all the gaps in the case with  your canned air.

SAFETY NOTICE Canned air sprays a freezing liquid when upside down which could cause frostbite, or critically damage your PC components. ALWAYS use canned air with the nozzle pointing up.

Lots of dust should now come out. Proceed to the next step to get the case off

Step 5: Taking the Case Off

Your system could have one of 3 ways to get the case off:
Handscrews (Common in new systems)
Screws (Common in older systems)
Clips (Common in servers and crazy expensive gaming cases)

Work out which of these your computer uses by taking a look around. Mine uses handscrews, as pictured, so I don't need any tools. This may differ for you. If you have any problems, leave a comment or refer to manufacturers instructions.

Once the screws are out, try sliding different things until the case comes off. Usually on newer computers, giving the side panel a bash towards the back side will get you in. Older systems generally require the whole outer to be taken off.

Step 6: Cleaning the Inside

Find every fan you can see, and spray it with canned air. Sorry, I have to repeat this:

SAFETY NOTICE Canned air sprays a freezing liquid when upside down which could cause frostbite, or critically damage your PC components. ALWAYS use canned air with the nozzle pointing up.

When you've sprayed everything to get the dust free, you're probably going to want to get rid of it all. Use a vacuum cleaner to suck all the dust away. Keep the tube on the cleaner just in line with where the case panel is supposed to be to prevent static electricity and damage to components.

Step 7: Thanks for Reading

Thanks for reading this instructable. I'd really appreciate it if you leave feedback in the comments.
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