Tag Archives: spill

Protect Your Laptop Keyboard from Liquid Spills


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About a year ago, I spilled coffee on my desk, and ruined the video card in my Gateway. Liquid and hardware just don’t get along.

A community member at large sent me a frantic Email earlier, saying that he had spilled soda pop on his laptop, and wondering what he can do. Unfortunately, you may not have any luck. It’s quite possible you’ve damaged something beyond repair. It depends on how well your keyboard is enclosed.

If you do spill things on your keyboards, make sure you unplug the keyboard or laptop immediately. If it’s a laptop, pull the battery out as well. Attempt to dry the keyboard off as best you can. I know that Kat had success cleaning her regular pc keyboard after spilling soda on it. She took all the keys off, and dried it really well. Then she used a cotton ball soaked in alcohol to clean up the stickiness, and voila. Keyboard worked again. However, you can’t really take the keys off of laptop keyboards.

If you have a newer laptop, your keyboard may be able to be easily replaced. However, if you have an older style, or even one with vent holes in it, you could have irrepairable damage to it.

Preventing this from happening is easy. You could simply not drink near the computer, or keep a lid/cap on your beverages. You can also get a keyboard skin (cover) specifically made to protect your particular model.

What other tips and tricks do you have for protecting your keyboard, or cleaning it up after a spill? Be sure to let me hear from you!

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I Spilled Coffee All Over My Computer!

Ugh. This week is not off to a very good start. Then again, it’s almost halfway finished now. I was just exchanging instant messages with my dad (who just got broadband this afternoon) – getting ready to help him through a few software issues. To clear my mind, I needed caffeine – so I reached over to pick up my full mug of home-brewed Peet’s. My periphery vision is not what it used to be, apparently. KLACK! SPLOOSH!

In less than a second, the creamy concoction had covered my computer desk – and without hesitation, I reached down to turn off the PC sitting at my feet. No doubt about it – this was one helluva mess. I could see that some of it had splashed onto the rear of my machine, still dripping from keyboard and monitor cables. Panic mode!

I grabbed paper towels and a dry washcloth, hoping for the best. During the cleanup process, I even invented a few new obscenities (which I dare not repeat here). Took me a good hour before I was able to reverse 90% of the damage. Holding my breath, I booted up the system – and everything seemed to be back to normal. There are still a few stains on the wall, but they should quickly disappear with a squirt (or two) of Formula 409.

I may still have to test Gateway’s hardware exchange policy – assuming that spilling coffee is not considered an “Act of God.”