It is a proven fact that a build-up of dust & dirt can shorten the life of computer hardware. This is caused by the dirt preventing the system from properly cooling itself. A dirty computer’s processor & graphics card will run 10-25% hotter when compared to a clean system. And for any electronic system, heat kills.
Over the last several years, I have been cleaning (vacuum & blowout) PCs at work just as I notice them getting dirty. Typically it is when I hear the fans having to spin up to their higher speeds that I stop and look to see if they are dirty. But, I don’t know how long they have been in that state and if any damage has occurred.
Lately, I’ve been considering a proactive approach to cleaning the computers. Something along the lines of going around with the vacuum twice a year and cleaning EVERY computer in a methodical & organized fashion. My belief is that by doing this on a regular basis, I will be preventing the build-up of dust and dirt, prolonging the life of our equipment, and possibly identify and resolve issues before they have a chance to grow into major problems.
As I begin to form this plan, I want to hear what you do at your company. Does your company proactively go around and clean the computers or do they clean them out once they start exhibiting issues? If you do proactive and routine cleanings, what schedule do you follow? Or have you done that math and found that it just isn’t worth the labor to visit each of the computers for which you are responsible?