Mac Keyboard Clean




Did you know your keyboard has 400 times as much bacteria as a toilet seat !!!
That alone is a good enough reason to clean your keyboard !
Also nobody wants to type on a grubby keyboard :P

So follow these steps to typing heaven :D

The pictures are of a Mac keyboard but this process works on all keyboards

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Step 1: Cleaning Tools

You could just use a Q-Tip to clean your keyboard, but I decided to use a Dremel with three cleaning attachments.


Soft cotton circle,
- Good for picking up dirt between the keys

Small plastic brush,
- Gets to hard to reach places

White abrasive bit,
- Gets muck off tops of keys

Step 2: UN-PLUG IT!!

Before you start removing keys you need to un-plug your keyboard !!

Step 3: Clean Key Tops

I Decided to clean the tops of my keys whilst they were still attached, its easier that way because they don't move as much.

So now put the white abrasive bit in your dremel and put it to about 1/3 full power.
Now just gently brush over the keys and the dirt will be cleaned off

When you are cleaning make sure you don't hold the abrasive bit in the same place for too long or the heat will build up and you will melt a hole in the key.

Step 4: Take the Keys Out

Now we have cleaned the tops of the keys we need to take the keys out to clean underneath.

To take the keys off a Mac keyboard slide one finger under the side of the key and gently lift upwards.
There are two small clips you have to be careful not to break when lifting the key.

When you are removing the larger buttons like the space bar, be gentle because there is a hidden metal clip as well as the two small clips.

It makes it easier to put the keys back on after if you lay them out in the right order above the keyboard.

Step 5: Clean Under the Keys

Now we have removed the keys we can clean underneath them.

To do this put the small brush bit into your dremel and turn it on,
Working from the top down brush all the muck into one corner then either hoover it up or just empty it into a bin.

Step 6: Convert to Dvorak ?

Since all the keys are already off your keyboard you may want to consider converting to Dvorak.

The Qwerty layout was designed because it makes your typing slower. Back in the 1800's when Christopher Sholes created the Qwerty layout, it solved the problem of the the key bars colliding during typing.

Dvorak is an alternative to the Qwerty layout. It's designed to cause as little hassle as possible. The most commonly typed keys are placed under the fingers and then this makes it easier to type common combination of letters and words.

In Qwerty, approximately 31% of typing is done on the home row. In Dvorak it's 70%. The Dvorak layout also has 37% less finger travel.

All this greatly helps to reduce stress on the fingers, hands and wrists which lessens the chances of getting RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury).

Dvorak doesn't take long to learn either :D

Step 7: Put the Keys Back

Now you have finished cleaning you just have to put the keys back.


Thanks for reading, hope this helps !

The steps would have been longer but i switched to Dvorak and its taken me two whole days to write it as it is.

Leave a comment and tell me how your cleaning goes :D

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    32 Discussions


    5 years ago on Introduction

    I like to take a picture of my keyboard before I take it apart, to make it easier to put back together correctly.


    Does anyone know how to pop the clear back off this style keyboard? preferably with out damaging the rest of the keyboard.


    7 years ago on Step 8

    "i switched to Dvorak and its taken me two whole days" ... LOL!


    9 years ago on Step 6

    I actually prefer Colemak.  What made me choose it instead of Dvorak was the ease of switching from qwerty.  According to Carlpax, Colemak is a little bit better than Dvorak anyway, and it is much easier to learn, so I see it as a win-win situation.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    One thing I know from experience, is even if some sites say you can, DONT put your keyboard in the dishwasher. It completely destroyed it.

    4 replies

    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

    Who the hell want to put their keyboard in the dishwasher??? Dishwashers are designed to wash dishes, not electronics!

    That's not even half as dirty as my mac's keyboard. It's used and someone spilled something brown and sticky on it. I don't even want to open it up!


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    It wasnt hard to change the keyboard, its taken me about 5 hours to learn the key layout. i would reccomend doing it though :D


    Reply 10 years ago on Introduction

     don't you have to reconfigure the computers settings to switch to Dvorák?


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Just wondering, why did you change? Is it easier or something, or just to look "cool"?

    or geeky


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    lol, its a better layout, easier to type than Qwerty and faster too, It also reduces Repetitive strain injury. and yes lol it is geeky, i like that and its something most people cant do :D


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Just did this today. I have two Apple keyboards, one white and one black keys. I switched some of them around, it looks really cool.