How to clean a gaming mouse

Squeaky clean.

three computer mice in a row
Photo by Bruno Yamazaky

Hands are often considered the dirtiest part of the human body since they come into contact with so many things throughout a typical day. Just like how our keyboards, monitors, and controllers can get dusty, it is safe to assume your gaming mouse is covered in dirt and oil after long hours of use. Here is a step-by-step guide to show you how to clean a computer mouse to help keep your mouse sanitary and working properly.

What you need to clean a mouse

When prepping to clean your mouse, you will need a few tools. Be sure to grab some toothpicks, compressed air, a dishcloth, or a roll of paper towels.

Cleaning a gaming mouse

Always use care when cleaning sensitive components. Before cleaning any computer accessories, make sure they are unplugged from the computer. If the mouse is wireless, remove any batteries from the mouse itself.

  • Use a toothpick to dig out any dirt or grime from the small nooks and crannies in the mouse.
    • Whether it’s a standard mouse or an elaborate gaming mouse, they all have lines and crevices in their design. Toothpicks are ideal for digging out build-up.
  • Clean out the computer mouse with compressed air after removing or at least loosening some of the gunk from the mouse. 
    • Compressed air is a common method for blowing out unwanted dirt and dust from all kinds of computer accessories. Use caution when cleaning with canned compressed air. It may damage sensitive components.
  • Wipe down the computer mouse with a cleaning wipe or alcohol-based wipe after detailing the mouse with a toothpick and compressed air. 
    • These wipes are commonly used for getting dirt out of those hard to reach spots on a mouse. Wipes are also better to use than soap and water because the excess moisture from the soap and water can damage your components.
  • Thoroughly dry off your mouse with a cloth or paper towels before plugging it in and getting back to gaming. Your mouse will thank you.