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How to Clean Your Mac Keyboard



A dirty keyboard is never a good thing, so if you’re wanting to make it look like new again, here’s how to clean your Mac keyboard.

Apple’s keyboard is one of the best-looking keyboards on the market, with it’s aluminum design and the bright white keys that contrast the aluminum color nicely. However, dirt and grime show up incredibly well on white surfaces, meaning that your Mac keyboard can look way dirtier than most other keyboards.

Dirty keyboards look gross, and it doesn’t help that your keyboard is a cesspool for all kinds of germs to begin with. This means that it’s a good idea to clean your keyboard every so often so that it stays free of germs, but so that it also remains free of dirt and grime so that it looks brand spankin’ new at all times.


Unfortunately, there’s only so much you can clean on a Mac keyboard, as you can’t disassemble it completely, but you can remove the keys to get rid of anything that’s been festering underneath them.

Without further ado, here’s how to clean your Mac keyboard.


Before you begin ripping apart your MacBook Pro, you’ll need a few materials to get you started:

  • Compressed air spray can
  • microfiber cloth
  • Spudger (or just your fingernail)
  • Q-Tips
  • Water & mild dish soap


The compressed air is to blow any dust that has built up underneath keys. The microfiber cloth is for wiping down the keys themselves using the water and dish soap solution. The spudger (or your fingernail) is to pry up the keys and remove them from the keyboard, and the Q-Tips are to remove any stubborn grime on the keyboard that the compressed air can’t get.

Now that you have the materials that you need, let’s finally get started cleaning your Mac keyboard. Be sure to unplug the keyboard, or if it’s wireless, shut it off and remove the batteries.

Do a Quick Wipe Down

Before you remove anything and start tearing apart your Mac keyboard, take your microfiber cloth and get it damp using water and mild dish soap. You don’t need to use a lot of dish soap — a single drop will do the trick.

Begin wiping the exterior of the keyboard to get rid of dust, dirt and grime. You may have to pay more attention to the keys, especially if they look really dirty. Don’t be afraid to scrub the keys down with a bit of force, but make sure your cloth is super wet, as you don’t want excess water to drip down into the cracks.

Remove the Keys

After you cleaned the exterior of the keyboard, you’ll now want to get inside to get rid of dirt and grime. This means you’ll need to remove the keys.


To do this, take a spudger or your fingernail and set it inside the crack between the keyboard body and the key. From there, carefully pry up the key to remove it. Do this for all the keys if you really want to.

Scrub Down the Inside

Once the keys are removed, take your compressed air and gently blow out any dust or dirt that’s settling inside the key receptacle. If there is stubborn dirt or grime, you can use damp Q-Tip to scrub it off. However, be sure to let the area dry thoroughly before putting keys back on.


To put the keys back on the keyboard, simply place a key over its receptacle and firmly press down until it snaps into place. Some of the keys are bit more complex, including the space bar, but it just takes a bit more effort to snap it back into place.



  1. Sue

    03/21/2016 at 6:49 pm

    “but make sure your cloth is super wet, as you don’t want excess water to drip down into the cracks.”
    Shouldn’t this be is NOT super wet?

  2. Ken Court

    04/02/2016 at 12:52 pm

    I would certainly think so!

  3. Jon

    04/05/2016 at 6:49 am

    Way to type, no type.

  4. kopzinski

    04/07/2016 at 3:40 pm

    Thanks!!! I really need clean under my the keys…

  5. Priya Agrawal

    04/17/2016 at 11:09 am

    how to clean my macbook keys.?

  6. sylvi

    05/24/2016 at 9:44 pm

    i took my space key off and now i can’t get it back because it has weird metal things

  7. Akseli

    06/16/2016 at 2:09 am

    This is a very bad tutorial since Mac keyboards are notorious of being destroyed if ANY water gets under the keys. So I wouldn´t suggest using water at all.

  8. Brent

    01/11/2017 at 4:20 pm


  9. Paul Wilson

    08/30/2017 at 3:48 am

    Hmmmmm. removed one key. Now it does not work. It’s sitting lower than the others and does not ‘press’!!!

  10. Jim

    09/04/2019 at 8:39 am

    Nice guide, I wibt be removing anything but dirt from the one I just brought as I have had so much trouble with buttons before.

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