Now we all clean our computers out from time to time, we even go as far as washing our heatsinks, radiators, water blocks, hoses, fans, reservoirs, Lap our heatsinks if it is needed replace the thermal paste on our heatsinks, etc. etc. (The list goes on forever).
There is one area that most people probably never do is clean the connectors that our computer components use to get hooked up to the motherboard, (These items I am talking about are the video cards, memory, PCI/PCI-E expansion cards). Is it out of fear, why most don’t clean these areas? Probably yes, a lot of us worry if we even look at the components sideways or even cross-eyed for that matter, that component will go up in flames. In reality this simple cleaning method is pretty safe to do (providing you take your time and don’t rush it or press really hard while you clean these areas). Well lets get on with this simple little cleaning guide.
If you are not sure you can properly do this the right way, or are completely afraid of doing this then don’t do it. Practice on older/broken hardware first to get an idea on how to do it properly. Or locate a electronic guru friend and have them assist you. As always I do not take any responsibility for your actions regarding your computer.
Things we will need to perform this little task. The item we are going to clean up, in this case I am using an 4870X2 video card that I felt it was time for a good decent cleaning. You can perform this on your memory, or any item that has a simple connector like we see here on this video card. We will also need a soft pink eraser, I picked this up and Wal-Mart, as you can see it is petty much the standard large eraser we all used through out our lives just make sure it is soft. A soft rag, I am using a Micro-Fiber cloth here, any rag or cloth works just make sure it is soft. And finally a bottle of 91% Rubbing Alcohol, the 70% stuff works as well, I prefer the higher % because it evaporates quickly and leaves very little residue.
This is the connector I was mentioning about, it is kinda hard to see how dirty this connector is because I just could not get the light to work with me. Any who on with the show.
Now time for us to grab our pink eraser, to make sure it is clean itself just run it up and down your pant leg to remove any residue off the eraser. (I suggest not to do this on bare skin because it will be rather painful, but if that’s your thing I wont say anything. Your secret will be safe with me 😉 )
Now gently, erase all of the dirt on the connector, use light pressure. if you have to use multiple passes then do that. The key thing here is to take your time and use soft hands.
Now flip over the card or item you are cleaning, and do the other side as well. Just repeat the same exact steps you did on the first side you cleaned.
Hmm, I told ya the connectors on my 4870×2 video card were dirty.
You will have small bits of eraser on your items connector, do not fret we will clean that up too. this is the first side.
And now the backside of the video card. Looks a lot cleaner then what it prior to me cleaning them.
Now grab your soft rag and put some Rubbing Alcohol on it, like so.
Then wipe down both sides of the connector. Again use soft hands and do not rub to hard. take your time, we have all the time in the world.
What this does is remove any eraser debris from the connector also polishes the connector itself. We can see I removed a bit more dirt off of the connector itself.
And now we are all finished up with the cleaning.
It is not hard for us to clean the connectors on our computer components. The true trick is taking our time and do it right the first time. Now the question I should answer, should you clean these connectors every time we clean our computers? No,it greatly depends on the area you live in. In high humid areas, I suggest cleaning these about once a year or six months, use you judgement if it looks way to dirty then clean it but if it looks a little dirty then no. Dry areas,I say at least every year, Look at the connectors when you clean out your computers, and use your judgement.