6 genius methods for all types of screens.
There’s literally no need to touch your television (ever!) and yet you can’t help but notice different sized handprints all over the thing. Also, is that a schmear of grease over there on Ellen Degeneres’s face? And don’t even get started on the dust. Now, instead of enjoying some downtime, you’re doing a forensic analysis of what must be the most neglected surface in the house.
We’ve been there. In fact, we’ve been there a lot. It seems like some of the most sophisticated equipment in every home (whether it’s tv screens, computer screens, or phones) are also some of the grossest.
As such, we put together this handy little guide to cleaning your television screen so you can concentrate on the important work of binge-watching. And rest assured, many (if not all) of the supplies you need for the job are already somewhere in your kitchen.
Nope, not a paper towel or a wad of nearby napkins. Trying to wipe your TV with these materials puts your precious pixels at risk of getting scratched. Grab a microfiber towel that is made from super-soft synthetic fiber. Use a gentle, circular motion to address any streaks or handprints. If they’re hard to see, turn the television off and look again. And be sure to avoid pressing down too hard on the screen, even when you’re trying to remedy tough-to-remove spots. This can damage your television irreparably. And let it be known that sometimes, the easiest way to fix a problem is with the simplest solution.
If it seems weird to use dish soap on your TV, stay with us. Many of the most popular television brands recommend using a mixture of distilled water and a tiny, little bit of soap to treat oil splotches and streaks. Or more scientifically, one teaspoon of liquid dish soap to every two cups of water. In other words, you want a soapy solution that’s very diluted with water. Soak a soft cloth in this mixture, then ring it out until it’s nearly dry again. Use the cloth to wipe away any blemishes on your TV, then wipe it dry with another soft cloth.
The trick to using vinegar to clean your television is a spray bottle. Simply pour equal parts vinegar and distilled water into a spray bottle and give it a shake. Never spray your television directly with this solution, or you’ll risk excess moisture penetrating the screen. (Or worse, component failure or electrical fire!) Instead, spray the microfiber cloth first and then use it to wipe the television clean. It’s that easy.
For the cleaning power of vinegar without the temporary smell, look no further than rubbing alcohol. Just make sure to check the label. You want a product with as much isopropyl in it as possible. (Rubbing alcohol usually has around 70% isopropyl but you can find products with up to 99%). Never use rubbing alcohol that contains ethyl, which can cause serious damage to your screen. Combine a cup of isopropyl alcohol with a cup of water in a spray bottle and squirt it onto a microfiber cloth. Use the cloth to wipe your screen completely clean.
If dust is your main culprit, the easiest way to clean your TV is with a Swiffer Duster. It not only traps and locks dust with thousands of fibers, its fibers can change shape to remove dust on the frame, base, and buttons on your television. Got a dusty remote? The Swiffer Duster handles that too. It’s undoubtedly one of the most effective tools in any household as it does wonders on computer screens, kitchen cabinets, and even windows.
Got sticky residue on your screen and can’t quite get it off? Essential oil to the rescue. Before you write it off as a hippy-dippy solution, it actually does a great job cutting through grease and smells nice, too. In a spray bottle, combine ½ cup of plain white vinegar, ½ cup of distilled water, and 10 drops of lime essential oil. Feel free to substitute the lime for lemon or even grapefruit if you’re feeling totally bananas.
Hopefully, these tricks of the trade will help you get back to that young, innocent television screen you pulled out of the box. Remember to keep a bottle of whatever solution you make at the ready. They can also be great battle tactics for smudgy computer screens, eyeglasses, and phones, and tablets. Most importantly, you’ll be able to watch TV without ever again wondering why your screen is more distracting than the show itself.