View the complete, original article at: electronics.howstuffworks.com
By: Alia Hoyt
Your mousepad is pretty dirty, but fortunately easy to clean.
You probably already know that your computer keyboard is dirtier than the average toilet. The next time you get around to sanitizing this all-important workspace, don’t forget to clean its equally nasty next-door neighbor, the mousepad.
Mousepads simply don’t show a lot of grime, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t all kinds of germs hanging out on the surface. Whether used for work or gaming, mousepads take a lot of punishment, so they definitely need some TLC.
Fortunately, it’s not a cumbersome chore to clean a mousepad. The following method (from gaming website Glorious) can be used for any fabric or plastic mousepad that doesn’t include any sort of tech, like a USB port.
- First, soak the mousepad in a sink or bowl filled with water and a gentle soap. A nice, mild shampoo or even a squirt of hand soap will do the trick.
- Using a soft brush, sponge or washcloth, gently scrub the mousepad.
- Rinse the mousepad with cold water until all the soap is gone.
- Finally, pat the mousepad dry with a clean towel. Allow it to fully air-dry before using it again. This takes at least 24 hours.
Some fabric mousepads are even machine washable! If this is the case with yours, follow these steps:
- Place the mousepad in the washing machine and add a small amount of detergent.
- Using only cold water, run the machine on the gentle cycle.
- Remove from the washing machine, then air dry for a minimum of 24 hours.
Plastic mousepads can be quickly cleaned, no water required. Try this method from Real Simple:
- Using a cleaning spray, lightly spray the surface of the plastic mousepad.
- Wipe the cleaning spray away with a clean cloth. If any areas are obviously dirty, use a little extra elbow grease.
- Finish it up with a swipe of a disinfecting wipe.
- Allow it to air-dry before using the mousepad again.
There’s no hard-and-fast rule as to how often you should clean the mousepad, but a minimum of once every three months, as well as after any illness, is a good start.
Now That’s Helpful
There’s no excuse for a filthy keyboard, as they’re even easier to sanitize than mousepads! Simply wipe the keyboard with a sanitizing wipe, making sure that it’s not so damp as to leak fluids into the keyboard itself. Then, dry with a clean towel.