Good to Know: Apple’s Support Doc on How to Clean iPads and Apple Products

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Apple has a support document that outlines their recommendations on how to clean Apple products including iPads, Macs, iPhones, displays, keyboards and more.

Keeping your Apple devices clean is an important regular maintenance task of course, and it’s good to see some tips on how best to do this from Apple themselves. If you’ve spent time cleaning your devices, most of these may be known to you, but it’s still a good refresher.

Here are the general tips that apply to all the products covered by the support document:

    • Use only a soft, lint-free cloth. Abrasive cloths, towels, paper towels, and similar items may cause damage to the item.
    • Disconnect your Apple product from any external power sources.
    • Disconnect any external devices and other cabling from the product.
    • Keep liquids away from the product.
    • Don’t get moisture into any openings, and don’t use aerosol sprays, solvents, or abrasives.
    • Do not spray cleaners directly onto the item.

And the separate section for iPads:

iPad and iPad 2

Handle your iPad with care to maintain its appearance. If you are concerned about scratching or abrasion, you can use one of the many cases sold separately. To clean iPad, unplug all cables and turn off iPad (press and hold the Sleep/Wake button, and then slide the onscreen slider). Use a soft, slightly damp, lint-free cloth. Avoid getting moisture in openings. Don’t use window cleaners, household cleaners, aerosol sprays, solvents, alcohol, ammonia, or abrasives to clean iPad. iPad has an oleophobic coating on the screen; simply wipe iPad’s screen with a soft, lint-free cloth to remove oil left by your hands. The ability of this coating to repel oil will diminish over time with normal usage, and rubbing the screen with an abrasive material will further diminish its effect and may scratch your screen.

I’ve got just a few things to add on this subject:

— I’ve used the iKlear liquid sold at Apple stores when cleaning my MacBook Pro’s exterior, display, and keyboard – and had good results.

— The oleophobic coating feature has always seemed a complete nonsense to me. Both my iPads have been fingerprint and smudge magnets from Day 1, Minute 1. That coating has repelled just about nothing in my experience.

— I used to think one microfiber cleaning cloth was just as good as any other. Then I tried out Mobile Cloth. These are far and away the best cleaning cloths I’ve ever used for the iPad and all my devices. I highly recommend having these around to keep your iPad clean.

Props to John Gruber at Daring Fireball for mentioning and linking to this Apple support document.

Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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4 thoughts on “Good to Know: Apple’s Support Doc on How to Clean iPads and Apple Products”

  1. I have found that using swifter wipes work great. These are the disposable pads that go on to the end of the swifter broom that your mom uses. They clean the iPhone and iPad perfectly and you can reuse plenty of times before discarding.

  2. I would love to get one of these based on this review if it weren’t for the shipping cost of ($7.99 to the UK). It would cost me $10.98 for the cheapest option. The P&P costs more than the product.

  3. I have to disagree on the oleophobic coating. Without it, it is a lot more difficult to get grease and grime off your phone. Also, do not use alcohol based products as they will strip this coating off. The first gen iPhone did not have the coating and it was a pain to keep clean. The coating is meant to make finger prints easier to clean off.

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