How to clean a MacBook screen

How to clean a MacBook screen
(Image credit: Mahod84 / Shutterstock)

To clean your MacBook screen, you should avoid abrasive items such as clothes, towels, paper towels, or similar materials. Instead, use a soft, lint-free cloth to get the job done. Apple products – even the best MacBook – are made from various materials that are susceptible to damage if they contact certain liquids or products.

Don't use aerosol sprays, bleaches, or abrasives on your computer. And never spray cleaners directly onto the device. Do use a 70% isopropyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes to gently wipe hard, nonporous, external surfaces such as the display or keyboard. Never submerge your Apple product into cleaning agents or water.

Regardless of whether you have a MacBook Pro 13-inch or a MacBook Air, here's how to clean a MacBook screen.

MacBook with cleaning wipe

(Image credit: Future)

1. Everyday cleaning

Through regular use, your Mac becomes the home for annoying streaks, spots, and stains. Bacteria, which could make you sick, is also present, although not to the naked eye. 

To get a handle on all of this, be sure to rub a clean cloth over the MacBook’s display and other flat surfaces. Hold it steady with your other hand. Don’t forget to clean the laptop’s top and bottom as these areas can become breeding grounds for germs. 

MacBook with rubbing alcohol for cleaning

(Image credit: Future)

2. Weekly cleaning

End each week by taking your MacBook cleaning to another level. To clean the MacBook’s display and other flat surfaces, use a suitable cleaning spray along with a lint-free cloth. When finished, use a microfiber cloth to remove any residue. 

You can also use wipes designed to kill bacteria and surface stains, but are safe to use on electronics. Because of COVID-19, these now come from various companies around the world. Alcohol or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes are perfect for cleaning these surfaces. Use a microfiber cloth to remove residue from these wipes. 

MacBook Pro keyboard

(Image credit: Future)

3. Keyboard cleaning tips

How many hours of the day are your fingers using your MacBook keyboard? Do you ever find yourself eating and working at the same time? Don’t let the grime build up; instead, use a clean sponge with some purified or distilled water to clean each key. Wring out the sponge until it’s almost dry before using it. 

To remove dust, lint, and other materials, consider buying a can of disposable compressed air. These are great in a pinch and ideally suited for cleaning your keyboard and workstation area also. Today’s “canned air” products are 100% safe for the environment and don’t contain CFCs. 

5. For stubborn stain removal

Add a slight drop of gentle dish soap to the water to remove stubborn stains. Don’t go overboard, however, and make sure to wring out the sponge before use. 

When finished cleaning, you’re good to go. Your MacBook is ready to get back to work.

Bryan M Wolfe

Bryan M. Wolfe is a staff writer at TechRadar, iMore, and wherever Future can use him. Though his passion is Apple-based products, he doesn't have a problem using Windows and Android. Bryan's a single father of a 15-year-old daughter and a puppy, Isabelle. Thanks for reading!