View Full Version : Dust tips?

08-05-2010, 10:06 PM
Hey so today I decided to clean the inside of my pc because I found that my 4850 was at 80C after playing a game and 47C idle. Now idles at 37C

I toke out the graphics card and there was a dust layer covered all over the heatsink and on the fan blade. I tryed to blow out the dust as best I could and used ear buds to strip away the dust that was stick to the metal of the heatsink and got it looking near good again.

How ever on the ghx card board (PCB?)there is dust like powder that is stuck underneat and near the heatsink. Is this a problem? and how do I remove it? I thought as long as the heatsink blades and fan are near dust free it is ok. I didnt wanna use my hands or ear bud on the ghx card board incase I damaged it.

What do you think?

Also how often should you and how long do you clean your pc? I probaly last cleaned it about 8-10months ago and the fans and fan cages where completely covered in layers of dust. My true-120 was covered in mm's thick of dust and can still not get the rest of the dust of to make it look like new again.

Any tips for preventing dust? And do certain cases prevent more dust then others? BTW i got an antec 900 case


08-05-2010, 10:55 PM
Dislodge the dust with a smallish (5mm) paint brush and suck it up (simultaneously) with a vacuum cleaner (don't get too close with the nozzle, can suck up parts if you're not careful, and can set up static electricity discharges if you touch the board (an antistatic wrist strap (http://search.dse.co.nz/search?w=anti+static+strap) is a good idea), hold it about 2 cm away so you're just catching dust. You can also buy cans of compressed air (http://search.dse.co.nz/search?w=compressed+air&af=cat:ctg0000183), quite expensive though.
Do you have your case sitting on (or near) the floor/carpet?, if so, this will be why it's collecting so much dust as most cases draw air in at the bottom/front.
And if you're a smoker, that makes the surfaces sticky and makes the dust problem worse.

08-05-2010, 11:16 PM
Like this (copyright Wainuitech?)

08-05-2010, 11:34 PM
lol not like that, but the fans were geting near that

Computer is on top of desk and above the floor, although theres a bed about a metre in front of it.

Phil B
08-05-2010, 11:41 PM
My work one looks like that about once a year. I take out the hard drive, jam up the fan blades, take it outside & give it 110psi, vacuum the hard drive & good to go for another year

08-05-2010, 11:55 PM
today it toke hours to take out all the dust from the fan cages take out the graphic card, clean the heatsink and all the fans. Can I get a vacumm with a small nozel to suck up the dust?

08-05-2010, 11:56 PM
I cleaned mine today, was only gonna install a temp extra hd but couldn't help it, only been 3 months and mine is on the carpet my room is quite small 3.5x2.5m.

I had dust everywhere, all the fans, had to use cotton swabs. You take the cover off and you see dust on the inner wall smothered around the side wall grill window. Not just where the grille is but around it on the flat metal wall area. It looked like someone vomited on it .. and looking flakey ..

Dust filters userful?


08-05-2010, 11:57 PM
theres a bed about a metre in front of it.
Probably why, lots of dust produced by beds and the people in them (skin flakes
there is dust like powder /blanket fluff etc), and it gets stirred up when the bed's made.

Particles from people are dispersed:

1. From their skin
2. From their normal outdoor clothing

The mixture of skin flakes and fabric fibers fragment into smaller pieces, so that the total number of particles is:

* 10 BILLION EVERY 24 HOURS. This figure is dependent on activity rate, work activity, more particles.

Demonstrations have indicated that typically this means:


They disperse into the air from exposed skin, through the apparel fabric and also out through the neck, waist, trouser opening and wrists.

09-05-2010, 12:03 AM
Me thinks it might be better to not have a video card, have it onboard or just have a laptop.

Phil B
09-05-2010, 12:05 AM
You can use dacron as a filter. Just take the case apart & stick it everywhere air gets in. You have to make sure that you've got plenty of exhaust fan power to create air circulation

09-05-2010, 01:56 AM
How to not get as much dust: use fans that suck air at a lesser speed, less air speed = less dust (I think). So try and use a big slow fan instead of a small fast one.

09-05-2010, 08:55 AM
Can I get a vacumm with a small nozel to suck up the dust?

Yes, a handheld vacuum will do. Combination of paintbrush and vacuum is what I use.

Son's PC was so filthy with dust and grime I took the entire thing apart so I could get at it all. He one front fan which was a bit fiddly to get at but man, the dust build up in that one!!!

09-05-2010, 09:09 AM
Like this (copyright Wainuitech?)

Must be from the deep south ... we tend to put as much insulation as possible in our computers to stop them freezing up in winter :thumbs:

09-05-2010, 10:26 AM
By far the best way to reduce dust is to turn the darn thing off when it's not being used - that can cut the dust sucking time down by two thirds or more.

Otherwise, try to keep the case as far as possible away from wherever you walk, as your movement helps to stir up any dust that has settled.

09-05-2010, 11:14 AM
Personally I use a Compressor, its set to 30psi Enough to blow out dust, yet you can put your hand over the nozzle and stop it, so generally not to high to damage PC components. Take the PC outside, both sides off the case, air line out the window - and clean.
For harder / stuck dirt on fans etc, I have a small paint brush to clean them first.

NEVER use a normal household Vacuum cleaner as they create static electricity -- Which is a NO NO to PC components. As Pctek said "hand Held" only.

Some Helpful Hints (http://www.cnet.com.au/how-to-clean-your-pc-240055521.htm) on how to clean out a PC safely.

kahawai chaser
09-05-2010, 02:01 PM
I think you can get a plug in dust ionizer/zapper thing, of which I recall one work mate used a few years back.

09-05-2010, 08:45 PM
Where abouts can i get some dust filters for my intake fans?

And about using a small paint brush, can I be rough on the graphics card board / mobo?

09-05-2010, 08:56 PM
And about using a small paint brush, can I be rough on the graphics card board / mobo?

Gentle cleaning is preferred depends on what you mean by rough

09-05-2010, 09:13 PM
like firm strokes over the bumps and stuff.

09-05-2010, 09:15 PM
Enough pressure to just dislodge it should be sufficient.

09-05-2010, 09:21 PM
Thats why you blow out a PC, not go to town with brushes.

You only use a brush on "stuck" crap, like the build up on fans.

If a person is going to
like firm strokes over the bumps and stuff. Then maybe they shouldn't be going inside to clean them - as they obviously have no idea what they are doing.

09-05-2010, 09:30 PM
No point in getting obsessive-compulsive about how dust-free the inside of your computer is, just an occasional vacuum/blow out + soft brush for the stuck-on bits fairly regularly is all that is required, if the heat build up is that critical and dependent on the dust build up then I suggest a bigger heat sink/fan/better air-flow management.

10-05-2010, 08:48 PM
Dislodge the dust with a smallish (5mm) paint brush
Make sure it is a real bristle brush not synthetic.

11-05-2010, 05:47 AM
I use the air compressor with the tank filled a few days before (static) and with a moisture trap and gently dust sensitive componants and with a pen placed on the fan/fans to stop uncontrolled high speed rotation ,a good Air duster attachment which controls air delivery is a must

11-05-2010, 10:49 PM
I only really bother with dust in my GFX card and CPU cooler.

I use canned air and a dedicated head for my electric toothbrush (not on, just that it's smaller so gets in between the fan blades easier). I keep the vacuum around to pick up all the dust bunnies afterwards.

A quick burst over the motherboard and other components is enough to get rid of the rest, I find.

I try to do it every few months. Mostly when I get bored and am stuck in whatever game I'm playing or have some work to put off. It's cleanest when I should be busy with other things.