Blowing out your computer and catching all that dust?

I can tell my computer needs to be blown out again as the fans are running harder. In the past I’d wear a mask, use blower, then my wife waves vacuum hose around trying to catch stuff. It’s like a bad carnival game and my room ends up coated in dust. There has to be a better way right?

Well, obviously I’d suggest you stay as far away from the dust as possible!

I am extreme, so I take my case outside, remove the side panels and point my leaf blower at it for a minute or so. But I accept I may cause damage that I am prepared to pay for.

But you are on the right track with the blower, just get it outside the house and wear your usual face protection.

Yeah just take the pc outside and do it there?

I’ve always vacuumed my PC and used a bushy broom or paper towles to wipe it (carefully) since blowing it can cause serious issues.

I take my PC outside and use a DataVac.

I take mine outside and use canned air, works fine. Never had any problems or serious issues.

I go outside and use the 2.5 gallon shop vac I have, just hook up the hose to the exhaust side and blow away.

Outside sounds like a plan.

My case doesn’t get dust inside of it in any appreciable amount. Glad I don’t have to deal with that.

Long story as to why I have a monster case I’m way too weak to carry out (it’s 55 lbs, deep, very large)

Many many years ago I wanted to OC my CPU to get more out of aging CPU and RAM. Looking at all the major case manufacturers no one was making what I deemed the most efficient way to keep your case cool - have every component directly blow their heat out the top of the case, and only draw in air via fans installed to the underside of the case as this is where the air in a house is coldest (near the floor). I got a free CAD program, designed it from scratch, then shopped it around to a bunch of custom case builders. Finally found one that would work with me doing Acrylic. We came to an agreement that I would give them the rights and ownership of the design if they made it for me for half price.

The motherboard sits at a 90* angle vs. norm so the graphic card can vent out the top, same for PSU, hard drives install on the walls of the case so their heat can vent up/out with an unobstructed flow, w/c radiator up top where it doesn’t block other devices. The air is pulled in through 3 120mm fans on the floor of the case to get the coolest air possible. Short little stand I made for it is actually a “frame” so no air is blocked to the underside fans.

Long story short this thing is too unwieldy and heavy for me to transport anywhere.

Just had an idea. I wonder if I could cover it with a a large leaf garbage bag. Mostly close off bottom and blow it out while wife holds vacuum tube near closed bottom. Kinda like laparoscopic surgery. A lot of dust would want to resettle on the computer so it would take longer to vacuum, but then it wouldn’t be all over my office.

It would be so much easier to just carry it outside and blow it.


Oh - heck why not. Wife and I are going to try carry it out together, put towels on patio table and lay it on it’s side for liposuction eerr dustoblowction. See ya inawhile

Yup, this is what I do too. The only real downside is having to unplug all the shit and dig the PC out of its cubby hole thing.

You have a Silverstone FT-01? You shouldn’t be getting dust inside. One of the major points of that case is to have positive air pressure, which helps keep the dust out. Are you turning the PC off when not in use? That could be the reason.

D’oh! Just realized this was a custom build. Not the Silverstone case. That’s what I get for not reading the whole post. But anyway, this is exactly what my case does: vents out the top, with 3x180mm intake fans (with dust filters) at the bottom and a single exhaust fan up top. That case was introduced in 2008. They made a smaller one the year before.

I use Swiffer Dusters for odd jobs like this. They’re microfiber fluff like incredibly soft, fine cotton wool, and once dust gets caught in the fibers it stays caught. They you just throw it away, and it’s gone instead of just moving around your house.

I use 'em when I brush LPs. Use my special brush to get the dust out of the grooves without creating new static, but a tiny bit of existing static is usually enough to keep some of it on the “lands” of the record (lands being the elevated parts between the grooves). Then lightly flick the Swiffer Duster around and presto.

So the last time I used an air can to blast out my PC, I used a Swiffer Duster to partially block the case door, then lightly flicked it around inside to actually gather up the dust. Worked real well.

HOLY COW you guys rock.

That was a thousand times better than anything I’d done before. Was so happy I did my keyboard, the tray, my mouse, and a bunch of other dusting too. This is the cleanest my computer and office have been since forever. It looked like it had lightly snowed on our table when I got done. So nice to not hear my fans straining as well. God, I’m just so happy with how clean this all this. I should have asked this 20 years ago.

@misguided - I got rid of my small diameter dust screens as they increased the noise level so much. Fans had to run harder, the whine was intense trying to pull that much air through such tiny mesh. I wish I’d had them do 200 mm fan slots instead of 120mm. It actually had enough space for them too :(

Sounds like you could use a piano dolly.

edit removed Amazon link, it’s getting screwed up somehow. But they’re not expensive, and can be very handy for moving large, heavy objects.

I’d love to see a picture of your custom design case, honestly. That sound awesome to have all the air blow upward.

Thanks will post one soon

Yes please. I also was very intrigued at what you were describing.

As for my own technique, I used to take mine outside to clean it out, but then discovered that I didn’t need to take it outside, or even unplug anything as long as I cleaned it fairly frequently, as in every 3 months.

I’ve got the rig on it’s own little table with just enough room on it that I can turn the PC sideways, remove the panel, blow out everything I can reach that way, then lay it on its side and hit all of the other areas that way (special attention to the graphics card, and the many hard-to-reach areas behind certain other components). Done frequently enough, not much dust accumulates. I also schedule the cleaning for just before I clean everything else (desktop, keyboard and monitors), and vacuum the floor.

Speaking of dust:

That Fractal Design R5 case that @stusser recommended, which I bought, is great at dust prevention, if this video is any indication. My own experience with the case, after just 3 months, is that the dust filter is doing a good job!

Yes and even more importantly it’s easy to remove the filters to clean them. If that’s a hassle, you’re less likely to do it.