How to Clean Laptop Fan Without Compressed Air

You can be a gamer who likes to stream or an artist who uses heavy-duty programs such as Adobe After Effects, Illustrator or Photoshop, the one thing you should know is that it is always important to ensure that your laptop fan is running well and performing up to its full capacity! Keeping your laptop cool is an important aspect of everyday computing. If your laptop fan is constantly running then it could be a sign that the fan needs cleaning.  Even if you just like to Netflix and chill, you still need to maintain your device!

In order to do this, you must remove the build-up of dust from your laptop fan every few months. Cleaning stuff with compressed air is pretty easy, however, it is not something we would recommend since you do not have any control over air pressure. If the fan spins too quickly, it can get damaged permanently! and the last thing you want is a broken laptop fan!

Also Read: How to clean dust from laptop without compressed air

You don’t have to worry though. There are plenty of other effective alternatives available for you to remove dust properly from your laptop fan. Once you try the methods below, you will definitely feel like a pro when it comes to taking care of your laptop!

how to clean laptop fan without compressed air

Table of Contents

How to Clean Laptop Fan Without Compressed Air

Method #1: Disassemble the Laptop

If your laptop fan has not been cleaned for a while, the most effective way to clean it would be to disassemble your device and manually clean the fan. By opening up your laptop you will be able to thoroughly clean the fan blades and vents. While this may be time-consuming, the good thing about this procedure is that do not have to worry about cleaning your laptop fan for a while.

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Start by turning off the laptop and removing the battery. Once your laptop is powered off, remove the screws from the bottom panel. Make sure that you have the right screwdriver. Place the screws in a bowl so that you do not lose them. Once you have located the fan on the laptop, hold it firmly before you start cleaning it to avoid any damage. Get a soft microfiber cloth to clean the dust particles off the fan and the blades.

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If you haven’t cleaned your fan in a while, then it’s probably going to be covered in dust. If that is the case, you’re going to need multiple pieces of microfiber cloth for cleaning. Once you are done cleaning the fan blades, use the cloth to clean the vents and other areas of your laptop. As a last step, blow into the fan with your mouth to get rid of any excess dust. Finally, reassemble the laptop and make sure the screws are in place tightly.

If you still notice some dust on the fan, you may use a napkin, Q tip, paint brush or makeup brush to wipe away any extra dust from the fan blades and the heat sinks.

Allows for extensive cleaning of the laptop fan  
Requires patience and care to avoid damage to any vital component of the laptop
Cheap, doesn’t really cost much

Method #2: Use a Vacuum Cleaner

A vacuum cleaner is an easy solution for your laptop’s dust build-up issue. There are primarily two different ways to use vacuums, the most common way is to actually vacuum(suck) the dirt off, and the other is to use the vacuum as a blower (this setting is not available on all vacuum cleaners).

For cleaning your laptop fan we would recommend using a lightweight cordless handheld vacuum since it offers a lot more comfort due to its small size and you can approach your computer delicately with caution. Make sure that the vacuum cleaner is earthed to avoid any static electricity damage to your laptop. Also be gentle with placing your laptops since these machines are prone to hinge damage!

Also Read: How to prevent laptop hinges from breaking

Start by making sure that your laptop is turned off. Place a non-metallic object such as a small piece of wood between the hole and the fan blades to block the fan from spinning. Set your vacuum cleaner at a low-pressure option and then then turn it on. Try not to put the vacuum cleaner directly over the fan blades, instead bring the vacuum to the vents at an angle. Always use the vacuum near the fan vent hole for a few seconds at a time. Repeat the process for all the vents on your laptop, while avoiding direct contact of the vacuum tube with the vents on your machine.

Although the pressure of a hand held vacuum will not be as strong as using a compressed air can, this method will effectively clean your fan and allow steady airflow.

A quick and cheap process  
Must proceed with caution to avoid any static electricity building up
No need to take the laptop apart  

Method #3: Use a Hairdryer

Who would think that a hairdryer could be used to clean a laptop? Well, it’s not as surprising as you think! A lot of people use hairdryers to clean their laptop fans. They are a great alternative to using a vacuum! Since you’re going for precision, we would recommend choosing a small compact hairdryer. They’re great for blowing dust off all sorts of electronics, a good idea to keep one handy at all times.

Before you start, make sure that your computer is powered off and the battery is removed. Start by placing a non-metallic object in between the fan intake grill and the fan blades to prevent excessive spinning, as this could result in the bearings of the fan being damaged. Keep your hairdryer on a cool or no heat setting, as hot air can melt the plastic components of the laptop. Make sure that the hairdryer does not touch any part of the laptop while you’re cleaning the fans!

Also Read: How hot is too hot for a laptop

Always clean parts of your laptop fan a few seconds at a time. It always pays off to be gentle with electronics!

Easy process using only a hairdryer
High damage risk, must be careful with the hairdryer
No additional costs/equipment required

Method #4: Use a Silicone Blower

A silicone or hand blower works just like a can of compressed air, however, it is a much cheaper and easier alternative. Like a compressed air can, a hand blower can be used to clean dust in the nooks and crannies of your laptop.

When using a blower, ensure that you are in an open space. If you plan on using it in your room, make sure you do it by a window or just consider going outside. The blower works when you press down on the container, releasing pressure for getting all the dust off the fan. If not done properly you will end up making a mess!

Easy to control with your hand
May not clean all of the dust in your laptop if the pressure is low
Cheap and durable

Final Words

All of the methods mentioned above are a quick fix for cleaning your laptop fan without using compressed air. If you have not cleaned your machine for over a year, it is very likely that dust has accumulated on the inside and you must get rid of it. Failing to do so will result in overheating and permanent damage.

Therefore, make sure that you regularly clean your fans so you can avoid common issues such as overheating and slow performance!

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