How to Clean a Touchscreen Device the Safe Way

How to Clean a Touchscreen Device the Safe WayWhether it be a smartphone or a tablet, we have all experienced those grimy fingerprints on our touchscreens. Cleaning a touchscreen device is fairly simple and you most likely have everything you need already. But the most important part of cleaning a greasy screen is remembering what you shouldn’t use.

Products such as Windex do a great job of cleaning windows and sliding glass doors. But in order to get the glass extremely clean, these kinds of products may contain minor amounts of abrasives, ammonia, or alcohol to get that glass squeaky clean. Some tissue products may actually contain small amounts of lotion to protect sensitive noses, but can add to the grime on the touchscreen. There are commercial products you can buy to clean your screen, but these products are generally not needed.

In addition to glass cleaners, one should not use any abrasive types of cloth, paper towels, or even tissue paper. These products can actually leave behind small scratches, which can, over time, build up and dull the touchscreen. You must also be aware of whether your touchscreen device is made of plastic or glass. Glass, in general, is easier to clean, while plastic screens can actually dull from excessive use of abrasive cleaners.

The easiest way to clean any touchscreen device is to follow these simple steps. Purchase a microfiber cleaning cloth. These types of clothes come in a variety of sizes and shapes. I bought my wife a microfiber cloth that is actually glove shape and which makes it very easy for her to clean her beloved Apple iPad. Amazon offers a 12-pack in multiple colors for under $10, which will provide you and your family with enough wipes to keep all of your devices and eyeglasses clean.

So why use microfiber cloths? The answer is simple: microfiber cloths are highly absorbent, and can suck up that grease right off of the screen. Plus, they can be washed hundreds of times and still clean up your touchscreen. For those really fingerprint-encrusted screens, you can use a small amount of plain water to clean up the prints. Just place a small amount of water on the microfiber cloth, rub gently, and wipe with a dry cloth. As a side note, do not spray water directly onto the touchscreen.

So how can you avoid the greasy fingerprints in the first place? Do not eat and play on your smartphone or tablet at the same time, especially when eating potato chips. In addition, it helps to wash your hands before you use your smartphone or tablet, but that is usually difficult for us to do. Less oil on your hands will mean less fingerprints — it is as simple as that.

Comments are welcome.

CC licensed Flickr photo above shared by ansik

Article Written by

I have been writing for Lockergnome for eight years.

  • gbyers72

    The funny thing is that I can move my fingers around better on a greesy screen. I too use water instead of overpriced screen cleaners, all they are at best is deisoned water in a bottle (means at the water contains no minerals). If u want to keep the water handy I reccomend putting it in a spray bottle, I just reused an old monster screen cleaner bottle which fits the job, thanks for the article :-)

  • Dane Reynolds

    i never really clean my screen because i’ve never really needed to. i can just wipe away any smudges with my thumb or trouser leg. :)

  • Clisty

    Just make sure to nix the fabric softener when you wash your microfiber. It ruins the absorbency and is greasy.

  • Larry

    Windex or an eyeglass spray – like you can get at Sears are preferred. Microfiber without a Windex or similar lube can allow scratching when abrasive particles are picked up and rubbed around.

  • Gabe Coury

    I find it easiest to use something cheap, like maybe a little bit of Windex, or a glasses/screen cleaning cloth, that you can find for relatively cheap. But I also find it very useful to have a good pair or couple of really nice, high quality microfiber cloths that you can clean all of your devices with. And I prefer to wear some sort of screen protector on the font and back, and there are anti-fingerprint and anti-smudge screen protectors that I have used before, but they tend to mess with the display quality of the device, or end up adding some sort of discoloration if your device happens to be white. I am yet to find a good quality screen protector that can do the whole job.

  • Matthew James McLaren

    Currently rubbing the white iPhone 5 around with my hands and it isn’t as bad as the black iPhone 5, the only place fingerprints that are noticeable is on the Apple logo and on the front glass. The aluminium shows up next to no smudges at all and since I am 15 I tend to have oilier hands than most adults so 8/10 for the white phones resistance 😀

  • frostythesnowman

    I exhale on my phone’s screen to add some moisture, then rub off on a soft clean surface like my shirt. Works well enough, probably clean it more seriously every 3-5 weeks with an extremely small amount of soap on a damp cloth and another rub with a non-soaped damp cloth to remove some suborn grime.

  • kcl182003

    You’re good advertiser for microfiber cleansing cloth, why not just using ordinary eyes glass cloth plus a little bit of dishwasher fluid, it serves well the same purpose.

  • Kaamil

    Thank you. This post helped me