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We keep our office at Acme Business and any machines we work on clean as possible. This keeps our devices – and our clients’ devices – safe and functioning. There are many threats to all sorts of tech devices. But believe it or not, computer dust can cause serious damage.

We know when it comes to your business technology, you’re likely more concerned with the larger-scale things that seem to be of the utmost importance. As a business leader invested in elevating your organization to the next level, you’re often busy researching technology integrations that improve operations to better serve clients and employees alike.

But, even if you enjoy a relatively clean environment, how often in your day-to-day are you thinking about computer dust? Probably not a lot.

Here’s why it’s important to combat this tiny menace.

What Can Computer Dust Do To Tech Devices?

In a computer or other device, the electrical components generate internal heat. The computer’s cooling system optimizes the inside temperature. The majority of computers use fans to keep cool, but this can bring in dust and other airborne particles. It’s usually not an immediate issue, but long-term exposure without care can cause irreversible damage.

Heat damage causes crashes, data loss and service outages. Computer dust that coats the components inside prevents heat from dissipating. A build-up of dust impacts performance by making it retain more heat and makes it more difficult for the fans to do their job.

Without proper care, dust can cause the fan to start slowing down, clog the air vents, and stop the fans over the processor. Not allowing hot air to be blown out of the computer stops cooler air from being drawn in. Essentially, the computer can no longer cool itself effectively, trapping heat inside.

But What’s the Problem with Too Much Heat Caused by Computer Dust?

Here’s the kicker. Heat causes electrical resistance of computer components, which increases the electrical current running through its sensitive components and increases the electrical load. Heat also damages components over time – sometimes permanently.

The environment plays a factor because high humidity can also cause more damage in these conditions. Dust attracts moisture and moist dust in a computer can corrode circuit boards. Moist dust is a partial conductor and can cause shorts and high-voltage discharges that destroy electronic components.

In the long run, computer dust causes devices to age prematurely, to become slow, and to function poorly.

How Do I Know There is an Issue with Computer Dust?

  • The computer fan is running louder than usual. This usually means that the fan is running at a higher speed than usual after the usual speed no longer works effectively to cool internal components.
  • The computer or device is warmer than before. It may even feel dangerously hot. It cannot bring cooler air and expel it as it used to, so air inside the device remains stagnant and growing ever warmer while the device is in use.
  • A good indicator is if the device itself is dirty or blanketed in dust. If there is dust buildup on the outside there are likely dust deposits inside, as well.

How Can I Prevent Dust Buildup?

  • Keep desks as clean as possible. Any unnecessary clutter should be removed to avoid attracting dust. Overall, keeping a well-maintained space will ward off most of these issues and keep your computer going smoothly.(Helpful hint: cleaning regularly actually makes cleaning easier and less overwhelming.)
  • Keep computers off the floor so that it stays away from the dirt that can be brought in by foot traffic.
  • DO NOT BLOCK THE AIR VENTS! Blocking the air vents increases the chance of computer dust buildup in and on the device and simultaneously hinders

Fighting Computer Dust – The Tiny Menace – To Keep Your Business Technology Running Efficiently

These are some of the tactics we apply to our own devices so we can keep the longevity of your business’s devices. We strongly urge our clients to adopt them as well, so their business devices run smoothly and efficiently. With regular upkeep, their devices often function well up to (and beyond) their expected lifespans. And in this “new normal” of remote and hybrid work environments, it’s helpful to recommend your team members maintain their home office environments, as well.

Acme Business, a business tech firm in Olean, NY, is here to help your business survive – and thrive – in the 21st century digital world. We can guide your IT needs, or provide managed IT and managed cybersecurity services so you can focus on growing your business or organization.

If you ever run into any issues, call Acme Business at (716) 372-1325 or visit our website. To see more of these types of articles, be sure to follow us on LinkedIn for regular updates!