A keyboard is an accessory that almost everyone uses on a daily basis, whether in the office or at home. As a result, it is heavily used, and sometimes falls victim to our clumsiness, potentially leading to its malfunction. But in this case, how to repair your computer keyboard?
There are several solutions for this. Sometimes, a simple regular cleaning can be enough to keep it working properly. But in some cases, more complex operations will be required.
We therefore propose to review the various precautions and solutions that will enable you to repair and maintain your equipment.to ensure the proper functioning of your computer keyboard.
Simple maintenance methods for your computer keyboard
You've probably heard the saying "Prevention is better than cure"? Well, this is especially true if you want your keyboard to be trouble-free. The best way to do this is to clean it regularly, so that no dirt accumulates between your keys.
Not only can this dirt damage your keyboard, but it is also a real hygiene hazard. Your keyboard is an ideal breeding ground for bacteria. To remedy this problem, here are a few simple ways to clean your computer keyboard.
1. How to clean the keys of your keyboard
Start by unplugging the USB cable connecting your keyboard to your computer. For old school keyboards with a PS2 port, you will need to turn off your computer first before unplugging it.
Next, provide an easily cleanable surface, or lay out a towel on your table, then turn your keyboard over. Tap on your keyboard to knock the dirt off. If you have a can of compressed air, then use it to blow out the dust hidden between the keys. If there are still stubborn bits, take a cotton bud, soak it in alcohol, then run it along the sides that haven't been cleaned enough.
In case you want to clean your membrane keyboard thoroughly, carefully remove the keys one by oneYou can do this with the help of a screwdriver. We recommend that you first take a picture of your keyboard to keep a visual of the position of each key. Once you have removed the keys, use a spray can to remove the dirt, then clean it with a slightly damp cloth. Finally, replace your keys in the correct order.
2. Clean your keyboard after spilling liquid on it
This happens more often than you might think, and it can seriously damage your keyboard, especially if the spill is of the sticky kind, like Coke or coffee for example.
To clean your keyboard, unplug it, then turn it over with the keys facing down. This should be done quickly so that the moisture does not damage the electronics. Take a cloth and dry your keyboard while holding it upside down. It is advisable to leave your keyboard upside down overnight.
If the liquid has already dried, then it is still possible to repair your computer keyboard by cleaning the keys with alcohol. If the liquid has only leaked onto the top of the keys, then use a cotton swab soaked in alcohol to clean them. Rub until the keys no longer stick. Then wait for the alcohol to dry, and check your keys one by one to make sure they all work perfectly.
Another trick is to place your keyboard in an airtight box containing raw rice. This may sound like a crazy idea, but rice is able to absorb spilled liquid and moisture. So put your keyboard in the box, sprinkle it with rice, and let it sit for a few hours.
While this method is effective in drying your keyboard, it does have one drawback: grains of rice may get stuck between your keys, even after you have tipped and shaken your keyboard. In this case, you will have to gently remove the stuck keys with a screwdriver to get rid of the problematic grains.
3. How to clean the keys of a laptop?
The way to clean the keyboard of a laptop is different, as it is directly integrated into the device. Here you will not be able to remove the keys, especially the space bar and the Enter key. The cleaning of your laptop keyboard is therefore done with a cotton swab and a can of compressed air.
How to repair your mechanical keyboard?
A membrane keyboard is generally easier to repair, partly because there are only a few parts to it. However, things become more complicated when it comes to repairing a mechanical keyboard. Here, each key is independent and has its own mechanism made up of several parts.
So how do you repair your computer keyboard if it is mechanical? We offer you several solutions here.
1. General rules for a thorough maintenance of a mechanical keyboard
If you are planning to carry out a thorough maintenance of your mechanical keyboard, then you should be aware that you will usually have to remove all the keys. Once this has been done, you can clean the mechanisms with a brush or scrubber.
To avoid getting lost in the order of the keys, you have two solutions:
- You take a picture of your keyboard, then remove all the keys for cleaning. You then use your photo to put the keys back in their place.
- you perform the cleaning per key removed. This will take more time, but you will be sure to put each key in its original place.
Removing the keys from a mechanical keyboard can be tricky. You should not force anything, as you may just make it worse. If you can't remove the keys, then you can remove all the screws from your keyboard and clean it from the inside.
2. Cleaning the switch with a blower
On a mechanical keyboard, key failure can be caused either by dust or by a switch malfunction. In these cases, the spring mechanism or the slider can get stuck.
In order to remedy this, you can blow out the faulty key with compressed air. This will remove whatever is blocking the activation point. If blowing does not solve the problem, then you will have to dismantle the switch, which is a much more complex operation.
3. Removing the switch
Be warned: this is a more difficult operation, and we advise you to entrust it to a professional if you do not feel able to do it yourself. Nevertheless, we will explain here the different steps to follow.
Remember that on a mechanical keyboard, each key is an independent unit, consisting of a small plastic box with a spring, a slider and an electric switch.
Some keyboards with PCB-mounted switches allow you to remove the top, then remove the slider and spring, and finally clean the switch and plastic casing manually. Repairing your computer keyboard in this way is risky though, as you could break the switch in the process.