How to Clean a Mousepad
Whether you’re using a regular mouse pad for casual internet browsing, or you’re employing a gaming mousepad to support your PC set-up, you will find at some point that your mousepad is in need of some serious cleaning. Inevitably, things can spill, or dirt/dust from your mouse can ingrain itself in your pad’s surface. If your pad is on the older side, then it’s probably reaching the time to get it cleaned. But how exactly should you clean your mousepad? Let’s go through the easiest and most effective strategies.
How Often Should You Clean Your Mousepad?
The frequency at which you clean your mousepad will ultimately depend on how often you use it and the circumstances that you’re using it. For example, if you regularly have sweaty hands when you’re gaming late at night every night, you may want to wash it more often than someone who only does light homework every few days. If you eat around your mousepad, there’s also a much higher risk that you’ll need to clean it since stray food and drink can find its way onto your pad. At the end of the day, if your mousepad looks or feels like it’s got some grime, then it’s probably time for a wash. So, let’s get into how you go about doing exactly that.
How to Clean a Mousepad Without Damaging It
Now, here comes the part where you actually need to do some cleaning. But, the idea of cleaning your mousepad may be scary, especially since many aren’t 100% sure what mousepads are made of and how they respond to water and soap. But, if your mousepad is made of either rubber, fabric, cloth, or plastic, then it’s definitely able to be washed relatively easily.
Wipe It With a Damp Cloth
This method is quick, simple, and meant for light-cleaning and regular mousepad maintenance. All you need to do is get a damp cloth, damp sponge, or a baby wipe and wipe your mousepad down to remove any crumbs, dirt, dust, hair, or other substances off of the surface. If you regularly wipe your mousepad down, you’ll substantially cut down on how often you’ll need to do a full deep-clean.
Wash It in the Sink
If you’re dealing with stains or extensive dirty and grime on your mousepad, then this second method will be much more effective for you. Bring life back into your mousepad by following these simple steps:
- Fill your sink with warm water and dish soap.
- Put your mousepad into the soapy water to soak.
- Lightly scrub your mousepad with a scrub brush or a sponge.
- Empty the sink and rinse your mousepad from any extra soap.
- Sit your mousepad out for at least 24 hours to fully dry.
Can You Put a Mousepad in the Washer?
Thankfully, you can safely use a washing machine to clean your mouse pad. However, the main thing that you should be aware of is not to use the hot water setting when you put it in the wash. This is because any rubbers that are inside of your mousepad may melt in the heat, causing your mouse pad to warp and distort from its original shape.
To wash your mousepad in the washing machine, follow these next steps:
- Put the mousepad in the washing machine by itself.
- Add a small amount of your regular washing detergent.
- Set it to wash on a low, cold tumble setting.
- Take it out and air dry for at least 24 hours.
Just like you shouldn’t use hot water to wash your mousepad, you also shouldn’t use hot air to dry it, For this reason, taking an air-dry approach rather than using your dryer is optimal and the least risky method to getting it clean without damage.
What Are the Best Products to Clean a Mousepad?
If you’re using the first or second method that we’ve outlined, then your best approach would definitely be some simple dish soap. If you’d like to go the extra mile, then we recommend an antibacterial liquid dish soap to ensure that you get a deep clean.
For the washing machine method, any washing machine detergent will do. However, if your mousepad is black or generally a darker color, then we recommend a washing detergent like Woolite that protects colors and darks from fading so that you don’t lose any of your pad’s cool design.
If your mousepad is especially gross and you feel like it needs some serious cleaning, then we recommend you try out a dedicated anti-bacterial gear cleaning spray that cuts away at grease, grime, and oil. The KontrolFreak CleanFreak is a good option, and it even comes with a cleaning cloth that you can use. This cleaner not only will help your mousepad out, but it’ll also clean any other tech in your set-up.
Tips and Advice for Cleaning a Mousepad
When you’re cleaning you’re mousepad, keep these things in mind, so you don’t end up hurting or damaging it in the process.
- Don’t Be Rough: Your mousepad may be able to put up with your extensive use while you’re shooting zombies or building houses, but it will not stand up to any rough scrubbing or tumbling. When washing your pad, be sure to stay gentle so as not to scratch up the surface and possibly dislodge any threads keeping it together.
- Be Careful With Heat: This tip is especially important for mousepads with any rubber or plastic. Using hot water or hot air can distort your mousepad, meaning it’ll never perform the same underneath your favorite mouse. When you’re drying after cleaning, you can try to use a hairdryer to speed up the process; just be careful not to put the hairdryer directly touching the pad or to use the hottest setting.
When Should You Buy a New Mousepad?
Most good mousepads can last you for years without needing to be replaced. Usually, most people buy a new mousepad when they’re current one doesn’t fit their needs anymore; it could be simply because they’re tired of their old one’s design or because they need an extended mousepad for more surface area. But, even if you’re happy with your pad, the time has come to replace your mousepad if it’s starting to fall apart. If stitching is fraying or coming loose, or if you’re noticing any holes in the fabric start to form, it’s most likely not going to be safe to wash them anymore due to an increased risk of damage. At this point, it’s best to invest in a new mousepad – maybe one with some wrist support to keep your joints as healthy as your pad should be.
Your mousepad has been with you through thick and thin; it stayed up with you all night while you finished that final exam, and it supported you well into the morning when you pulled an all-nighter playing game with your buddies. Whatever your mousepad was there for, it eventually will need to be cleaned. Do your pad justice and treat it with respect; clean it the proper way to ensure it lasts long and continues to look great.