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Laptop Cooling Pad Keeps Your Laptop Running Cool

But you still need to clean out the dust and dirt

Besides keeping your laptop computer clean, it helps to use a cooling pad under it. Laptops can get very hot with extended use, and the heat can be damaging. A cooling pad eases the workload on the computer's own fan.

The single fan on this Cooler Master X2 is surprisingly quiet as it blows plenty of cooling air through the metal mesh. The height of the back edge is adjustable so you can have your laptop at the angle you prefer. The cooling pad connects to your laptop via a USB cable. This could cause a shortage of ports, but the pad has another USB port you can use. That's a real plus for me. It's also very sturdy, with no twisting when you pick up the cooling pad with the laptop on it.

Cooler Master NotePal X2 Laptop Cooling Pad with 140mm Blue LED Fan (R9-NBC-4WAK-GP)

Cooler Master NotePal X2 Laptop Cooling Pad with 140mm Blue LED Fan (R9-NBC-4WAK-GP)

Users have enjoyed 10-degree cooler temperatures when using their laptops on this cooling pad. That leads to more comfortable gaming or surfing, as well as longer life for the laptop computer.

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Step 1: Remove Screws

Before you can clean your laptop computer, you have to get inside

a.) Turn the laptop computer over and remove the screws. This is easy enough, even though there are about 327 screws. They will be different lengths, so you might want to separate them in empty egg carton compartments and label them so you remember where they came from.

b.) Run a magnet across the carpet surrounding your work area to locate all the screws after you accidentally knock the egg carton off the table.

c.) Gently separate the bottom of the laptop from the top. Note the spots that aren't coming loose and search for the screws you missed. This will take, more or less, fifteen minutes, and you won't find any more screws.

d.) Remove all components from the laptop to find the screws hidden inside the compartments and remove them. This picture shows my battery compartment with hidden screw.

e.) Again gently try to separate the parts of the laptop. Walk away to cool down after discovering that something is still holding the pieces together.

Step 2: Find Screws You Can't Get To

They don't make cleaning your laptop easy

a.) Locate screws under the hinged side of the monitor where you can't get to them. Spend about ten minutes looking over the entire laptop to convince yourself there really aren't any other screws.

b.) Very carefully pry up the plastic pop-in panel adjacent to the monitor.

c.) Remove the screws from the monitor hinges and then the previously inaccessible screws. Of course, the monitor is still attached to the laptop by wires that run under the keyboard.

d.) Once again try to separate the two halves of the laptop shell, finding that it still doesn't come apart. This might be a good time for a glass of wine.

clean your laptop computer

clean your laptop computer

Step 3. Remove Keyboard

a.) Remove the screws that hold the keyboard in place and slowly lift the keyboard out. It is attached with a connector that you can easily disengage, believe it or not.

b.)Realize that you still can't disconnect the monitor, so you'll have to work with it hanging precariously by its wires.

c.) Set the keyboard aside, being careful not to pop off any keys. They're a real bugger to put back on. Ask me how I know.

how to clean your laptop computer

how to clean your laptop computer

d.) Under the keyboard find a simple panel attached by only one or two screws.

e.)Realize this panel is where you access the fan and you didn't have to remove all those screws to separate the bottom of the laptop at all.

f.) Forget the wine. Get out that bottle of Patron.

clean your laptop

Step 4: Remove The Panel And Unscrew The Fan

Now we're getting somewhere

a.) Remove the panel under the keyboard. Remove the screws holding the fan in place.

b.) When you drop the tiny screws into the body of the laptop where no fingers will reach, consider that you can no longer turn the unit upside down to shake it out because your monitor is hanging by fragile wires.

c.) Attempt to tease the screws out with the smallest screwdriver you have, succeeding only in pushing them further into the crevices.

Ullman HT-5 Pocket Telescopic Magnetic Pick Up Tool with Powercap

Ullman HT-5 Pocket Telescopic Magnetic Pick Up Tool with Powercap

A telescoping magnet would come in real handy right about now to draw those renegade screws out.

This one has a cap that prevents it from sticking to the laptop parts alongside the loose screws, and the textured grip will help you hang on to it even though your hands are now trembling from agitation.

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Or you could just use a refrigerator magnet shaped like Idaho like I did.

Step 5: Lift The Fan Out And Clean It

Here's your chance to really clean your laptop computer

a.) The fan is connected by wires. You might be able to keep on taking out screws until you get to a place where you can disconnect the wires, but I'd reached my limit.

b.) Clean all the dust, cat hairs, and cake crumbs off the fan and out of the compartment, as well as the intake and exhaust vents. All I had to work with was a little brush and a Dyson vacuum cleaner. A vacuum isn't the best way to clean your laptop computer. There's a risk of static buildup. Instead, blow the dirt out with compressed air.

Compressed Gas Duster, 10oz Can, 2/Pack

Compressed Gas Duster, 10oz Can, 2/Pack

Don't just take a deep breath and blow the dirt out. You don't want moisture inside your laptop.

Keep a couple cans of compressed air handy for cleaning those tight spots. Use short bursts to avoid icing and to make the air last longer.

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Step 6: Reassemble

a.) Now it's time to put it all back together. Here's where you curse yourself for not taking digital pictures of each step when you took it apart.

b.) If you're lucky, you'll have a screw for every hole, and none left over. If you come up short of screws, just make sure all four corners of the laptop case are secured and call it good.

c.) See if there's any Patron left in the bottle and relax for the rest of the day. You deserve it.

Step 7: Disregard Steps 1 Through 6

The best way to clean your laptop computer

Just take the dang thing to the computer store and let them hassle with it!

If you've ever taken apart a laptop computer, you know why they charge what they do.

Next time, I'll take mine to the pros and just go straight to the Patron.

Photo by iBjorn at flickr.com

Thumbs up for the computer pros!

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