How often do you clean out your computer (physically, wrt dust)?

Discussion in 'Cases & Cooling' started by mikeymikec, Oct 8, 2012.

  1. OVerLoRDI

    OVerLoRDI Diamond Member

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    Once every other month. I have quite a lot of air flow and my radiators get filthy. If I'm draining the loop for whatever reason I also will take the radiators and rinse them to truly get them dust free.
     
  2. Skott

    Skott Diamond Member

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    As needed. About 2-3 times a year. Depends on which case though. Some get dirtier than others and some are harder to clean. Ideally I guess it should be at least inspected inside once a month.
     
  3. Cerb

    Cerb Elite Member

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    One every few years. I vacuumed around the heatsink once a few years ago, and gave it a good cleaning with a compressor just a few months ago.

    I've got big heatsinks, slow fans, positive air pressure, and a long-haired cat all in my favor, though.
     
  4. pandemonium

    pandemonium Golden Member

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    I clean it as often as needed - when it's dirty and temperatures seem higher than they should be. :p

    A regulated cleaning schedule would be better, I'm sure. But when I clean, I get out the Qtips and isopopryl alcohol and remove everything and clean everything thoroughly. Simply removing the cake dust just doesn't cut it for me any more. :eek:
     
  5. mindwreck

    mindwreck Golden Member

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    every other month with a compressor. don't like dusty computers :)
     
  6. WoodButcher

    WoodButcher Platinum Member

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    Of all these only #6 and # 37 seem to be built or customized in any way, aftermarket heatsinks and a power supply. People buy pre-builts because they are ignorant or simply can afford to.
     
  7. mikeymikec

    mikeymikec Diamond Member

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    Oh ****, not again. I noticed the CPU temp hitting 40C (needless to say, noisier fan) when I'm hardly doing anything and CPU usage has been at zero for some time, and sure enough I found a thin layer of dust over part of the heatsink. I decided I've finally had enough of this stupidity (as the last time I vacuum-cleaned it out was when I started this thread in August), found a thin piece of packaging sponge, tested it for air throughput (vacuum cleaner), and taped it to the side of my case to cover the vents. CPU usage is now at 32C (dropped steadily from 36C after boot). I'm happy to secure the sponge a bit more thoroughly once I've run the system for a bit longer.

    One interesting thing is that every time I've checked the graphics card (which is right at the bottom of the system), it has never needed vacuum cleaning.
     
    #32 mikeymikec, Nov 11, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2012
  8. nickbits

    nickbits Diamond Member

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    only when things get upgraded.. which is rare, so maybe every 3 years and then i just give it a quick blow*

    *that's what she said
     
  9. C1

    C1 Golden Member

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    When it shows that it needs cleaning; ie, visible dust in case, on components and in heatsink fins. I just use a vacuum cleaner and for heat sink fins and fan blades, I use an art paint brush (about 1" wide) to scrub between the fins and on the fan blades while the vacuum catches the dust. Works pretty good, but haul'n out the vacuum is PITA. Be nice to have a smaller hand held battery unit instead.
     
  10. Charlie98

    Charlie98 Diamond Member

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    I started covering most of the unused vents in my CM HAF922... I used a sheet of sticky paper to cover the opening on the side cover, duct tape over the unused front panel covers and around the 200mm fan up top. And then I bought some magnetic dust filters from FrozenCPU for the front and bottom that work pretty well. I hit them with a can of compressed air I have setting next to the case every week or so.

    The goal was to get it as tight as I could and achieve positive case pressure... I don't know how well I'm doing on that, but the case sees a lot less dust when I pull the side panel off for some reason.

    To do it over again I would have bought a smaller case or one with built in filters (like the Corsair 550D ) but hindsight is always 20/20...
     
  11. ravenvox

    ravenvox Junior Member

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    once a year
     
  12. Shephard

    Shephard Senior member

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    to my knowledge you should not vacuum a desktop whether it's on or off... static electricity could kill your parts, especially RAM.

    also using regular compressors are very strong and could destroy the fans if your not careful. Oil and water can also come out of them compared to the little hand dusters made for computers.

    I think a good way would be a Leafblower a pretty good distance away.
     
  13. WhoBeDaPlaya

    WhoBeDaPlaya Diamond Member

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    Around once every two months.
     
  14. dirksquarejaw

    dirksquarejaw Member

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    About every six months. Full clean out. My antec 1200 three front case fans require a bit more attention like every two months.
     
  15. dave_the_nerd

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    This. If I upgrade/swap a component (every 6-12 months) I'll take the panels off and blow out with canned air.
     
  16. Revolution

    Revolution Senior member

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    Once every two months.
    My case have no dust filter. :(