August 24, 2020

Information Technology equipment cleaning guidelines

With a goal of employees working in a safe and healthy environment, the Office of Information Technology (OIT) is recommending cleaning supplies and procedures for equipment. 

Cleaning supplies include: 

  • lint-free cloths.
  • monitor/screen wipes (recommended for technology equipment).
  • isopropyl alcohol.
  • disposable gloves.

Here are some helpful guidelines 

Before starting to clean any electronic device, it is important to turn off the main power source. Computer monitors are particularly sensitive and harsh chemicals can damage screens. To prevent damage, use a lint-free microfiber cloth and cleaners specifically formulated for screens and monitors.  Avoid using paper towels, rags, or fabrics; although soft to the touch, these can be abrasive to delicate surfaces. 

When cleaning a keyboard, mouse, or phone always use a new disinfectant wipe or soft microfiber cloth with isopropyl alcohol for each device.  Because these are the most touched surfaces, it is important to clean them thoroughly. Clean the surface and bottom of the mouse or keyboard thoroughly, and make sure to rub the top and sides of each key. Do not spray cleaners directly into devices; spray into a cloth and then apply. 

Employees should clean devices in their offices regularly. The timeframe depends on how often employees leave their office. Going into common spaces and touching surfaces, devices, and doors, brings the outside world into otherwise private offices. Visits outside the office should determine the cleaning schedule within the office. 

Devices in shared/public locations should be cleaned/disinfected frequently—theoretically after each new user. To ensure that a device is cleaned between each user, the person taking over use of the device should clean it rather than the person leaving. With this method, each new user can be certain the device is clean before use. 

Finally, it is always prudent to refer to the manufacturer’s recommendations before cleaning any technology device.

The OIT has developed an infographic on cleaning technology equipment that can be printed and/or shared with more detailed information also available. For general information on cleaning and disinfecting your office, visit SIU’s Coronavirus Information website. 

For specific cleaning recommendations for cleaning technology equipment, refer to these articles from Apple, “How to Clean your Apple Products” and Dell, “Guidance for Keeping Your Dell Technologies Equipment Clean".