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Robbie1979
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Posts: 20
Registered: ‎03-18-2015
Location: UK
Views: 2,094
Message 1 of 8

X220 Keyboard Cleaning

Hi guys. Sorry if this has been asked before but I couldn't find anything in the search results.

 

I need to clean an X220 keyboard (has never been cleaned in it's 3-year life!). I've given it the once over using some household cleaner sprayed onto lint free cloth and then gave it a dab of Purells as well. I took the keyboard off and did it and everything works fine upon reconnection. But the real problem is all the junk under the keys themselves. I'm going to get a can of compressed air to try and tackle this.

 

With that in mind, does anyone here have any better tried and tested suggestions for getting into those nooks and crannies and just cleaning the keyboard in general? Cotton buds (Q-tips for our colonial readers) are too thick. I came across this video where the guy basically drowns his keyboard in isopropyl but it doesn't look very safe, although he gets it to brand new condition - I wasn't even aware you could get that much liquid all over the keyboard without ruining something!

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7za8WpqVbQ

 

Thanks for any help.

Guru
Posts: 9,598
Registered: ‎12-26-2009
Location: CA
Views: 2,087
Message 2 of 8

Re: X220 Keyboard Cleaning

I used to just pry off all the keycaps on my W520, but it was way too time consuming and broke enough of the plastic nubs to realize it wasn't the best way.

Right now I just take the keyboard out and run it under the tap (shaking it while it has water in it seems to dislodge about 50% of the gunk under the key). Leave it to dry for a few hours (overnight) before reattaching it.

I tried the isopropyl rinse twice, but it killed the keyboard both times (don't know why).

W520: 2960XM, Q2000M @ 1091/1380, 32GB RAM, 500GB&750GB HDD & 500GB SSD, FHD&MB168B+
X61T: L7500, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, XGA screen, Ultrabase
W550s: 5600U, K620M at 1164/1281, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 3K touchscreen
X200s: SL9400, 6GB RAM, 64GB SD card, WXGA+ screen
TPT1: 1839-23U
Robbie1979
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Posts: 20
Registered: ‎03-18-2015
Location: UK
Views: 2,077
Message 3 of 8

Re: X220 Keyboard Cleaning

Wow so it turns out you can run water over it?! Won't it cause any damage?
Community Moderator
Community Moderator
Posts: 3,830
Registered: ‎07-24-2013
Location: CH
Views: 2,070
Message 4 of 8

Re: X220 Keyboard Cleaning

I also used the water method, it's safe as long as you care that the back doesn't get wet, and you let it dry in a dry (doh!) place.

 

I'd clean some very dirty and disgusting dirty looking keyboards like that. I let them dry around 24h...

 

For those keyboards that are not that dirty I use this: 

 

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Robbie1979
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Posts: 20
Registered: ‎03-18-2015
Location: UK
Views: 2,066
Message 5 of 8

Re: X220 Keyboard Cleaning

Thanks guys.

Still seems pretty daunting to put water over it. Does the water actually go through to the silver-coloured back side? Is there a particular method to it?
Guru
Posts: 9,598
Registered: ‎12-26-2009
Location: CA
Views: 2,060
Message 6 of 8

Re: X220 Keyboard Cleaning

As long as it's totally dry before any power goes through it, it should be safe.

Water won't be able to get all the way behind it, but no debris should be able to get there either.

I just run water in near the left/right side, tilt the keyboard 45 degrees, and have the water flow through it and out the right/left.

Mashing the keys while the water is flowing should dislodge some debris too.

W520: 2960XM, Q2000M @ 1091/1380, 32GB RAM, 500GB&750GB HDD & 500GB SSD, FHD&MB168B+
X61T: L7500, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, XGA screen, Ultrabase
W550s: 5600U, K620M at 1164/1281, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, 3K touchscreen
X200s: SL9400, 6GB RAM, 64GB SD card, WXGA+ screen
TPT1: 1839-23U
Robbie1979
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Posts: 20
Registered: ‎03-18-2015
Location: UK
Views: 2,022
Message 7 of 8

Re: X220 Keyboard Cleaning

Thanks, I'll give it an (apprehensive) shot!
Community SeniorMod
Community SeniorMod
Posts: 3,282
Registered: ‎12-01-2007
Location: US
Views: 2,001
Message 8 of 8

Re: X220 Keyboard Cleaning

Hello,

 

In the past with the classic 7-row keyboards, I have just removed the keyboard and then cleaned it with a small bristle brush, can of compressed air.  An old business card or index card can be slid inbetween the keys to dislodge any junk.

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 



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