Q&A: Dusting down

Q My Mac Pro appears to be getting quite dusty internally. Can I clean it out using an industrial vacuum cleaner, or is there something better?

A It is a good idea to periodically remove dust from inside the case of Macs, particularly desktop models with air intakes and fans.

Shut the Mac down, disconnect it from the mains and all peripherals, and move it to somewhere suitable for cleaning. Rather than using a vacuum cleaner, which tends to suck dirt into internal nooks and crannies, use a clean air line from a compressor (at reduced pressure) or canned air to carefully blow air through the coolings ducts, fans, and interior, until they are clean.

Once done, take the opportunity to ensure that all internal sub-assemblies and memory modules are properly seated, and any internal cabling is correctly routed. And don’t forget to give the desk where your Mac sits a good clean before replacing it.

Updated from the original, which was first published in MacUser volume 27 issue 16, 2011.