How to thoroughly clean a laptop after sugary spillage?

Sep 14, 2018
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I just had my worst nightmare come true! :(

I've managed to spill a whole cup of tea with LOTS of honey in it all over my brand new $2.000 laptop, my dear Acer Predator Helios 500! *weeping*

Immediately I lifted the laptop upside down, turned it off, pulled out the charger and anything else I had connected to it.
Then I got a towel to lay it down on (still upside down, but with the screen going down from the end of the table as the screen doesn't fold all the way back) and unscrewed the service panel in the back so I could remove the battery and SSD.

Now I have it standing on top of the towel, face down, leaning on the top of the screen and the bottom of where the touchpad is so it makes like a pyramid shape.


After googling around I've come to understand that sugary spillage is even worse than I thought, not only will it probably make some of my keys sticky, but the sugar will start to corrode my components when electricity is added *I'm pretty much crying at this point*

I've checked with the shop from where I bought the laptop and they say it will probably cost well over $100 to get it all cleaned up and have thermal paste reapplied to the CPU....so I'm close to deciding that I might try cleaning it myself.


To open the main panel I'd have to unscrew 17 more screws and then even more to remove the heatsink and I don't even know how to go about opening the front in order to release the keyboard....but maybe I could do it with some serious dedication to making a system for knowing what screw goes where when it comes to reassembly.

I've understood I need to get isopropyl alcohol and a tiny brush, thing is tho that I still haven't been able to find a video showing exactly how to clean the parts properly and I don't know what comments to trust.
Some say it's better to just flush everything with distilled water, others say you should pour the alcohol all over your laptop, some say you should spray the components and some say you should use a microfiber cloth and apply the alcohol only to that and then clean with the cloth.

That last option seems to me the most reasonable one, but I don't know...maybe I wont be able to get everywhere using just the cloth and a brush, maybe it's better to submerge the parts completely in a bucket filled with isopropyl alcohol?



So that's why I've come here, does anyone here have experience completely cleaning a new or expensive laptop to remove sugary spillage?

Only video I found showed a dude just rinsing a motherboard under his sink and submerging the keyboard in his sink that was filled with water....he did that with an old laptop belonging to the daughter of one of his workmates, I highly doubt he'd do that on a brand new $2.000 machine.


PS: I know it was stupid to bring this extremely sugary drink to my laptop desk, I'm not thinking straight today cause I've gotten sick...which is why I was drinking tea with honey.
 

USAFRet

Illustrious
Moderator
It absolutely needs to be taken apart fully, and cleaned.

If this is your first time taking a laptop apart, and it is a brand new $2,000 system, and they only want ~$100 to do that?
That is absolutely the way I'd recommend.
Even if it were $200.

Laptops are tricky. And if this is your very first time...
 

USAFRet

Illustrious
Moderator
It absolutely needs to be taken apart fully, and cleaned.

If this is your first time taking a laptop apart, and it is a brand new $2,000 system, and they only want ~$100 to do that?
That is absolutely the way I'd recommend.
Even if it were $200.

Laptops are tricky. And if this is your very first time...
 
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