Cleaning you case fans. How to do it properly?

Hi there. As per topic title, how is it done? I've heard people using Q tips and slowly cleaning off each of the fan's blades and the interior. I've also heard about immersing the fan in dish washing liquid and water overnight, then letting it dry 2 to 3 days. Question is, would soaking the fan in dish washing liquid damage the motors or cause rust? Or is it different for ball bearing and sleeve bearing fans? Kindly enlighten me here :D And if, IF you happen to have 1 liter of 90+% alcohol, would it be better to soak the fan in it instead of using dish washing liquid? I know some would advise cleaning using the Q tips but I'm looking for a more effective way..
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  1. ixeT,

    I would not recommend soaking the fan in any liquid. Water can short out contancts, cause rust/corrosion, and mess with bearings. Alcohol is flamable, and could mess with any bearing lubricant.

    Use canned air or a vacuum to remove a great majority of the dust. I use a bristled nozzle, insert a portion of the bristles in the rear of the fan and rotate the front of the fan (by hand). the bristles make contact with the fan blades and scrape off some/most of the dust. I let them go with a little bit of dust left. If they have to be really clean, try a towel or q-tips dipped in soapy water.

  2. personally i would rather use q tips and a good ol can of air than clean with soap and water. I usually just take some tissue paper and wipe off the fans. I sometimes take off my heatsink fan and clean out my heatsink and fan using the same methods. You should think about buying some filters if you dont already have some because they significantly reduce the amount of work you have to do when cleaning your case. All you gotta do is take out the filters and soak them in water or run them under the faucet. Of course some dust gets through and you clean that out as you normally would.
  3. This is how I clean the whole insides:

    1) A 1" paintbrush to losen old dust that humidity has "cemented" in place.
    2) A pipecleaner to clean all heatsinks.
    3) Q-tips with Alcohol as a last step in cleaning fan blades.
    4) Last step...a short blast of canned air.

    If you follow these steps not only will the computer be cleaner than air alone....a can of air will also last over 25 cleanings!
  4. I use a toothbrush. (small hobby brush can work well also.) Remove the fan and just brush it clean. Do the same to the heatsink, and you should be good to go. I find it doesn't take long at all doing it this way.
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