How to Properly Clean and Sanitize Your Smartphone

BY GreenBot Staff

Published 9 Feb 2016

Years ago, the London School of Hygiene Tropical Medicine found that 92 percent of phones tested had bacteria. It doesn’t sound very comforting, but that’s part of the course for being a bunch of evolved animals with gadgets in their hands. That’s also why I sought to find out how to clean a smartphone properly. Here are a couple of tips I learned along the way.

Make a Habit of Wiping It Down

A sampling of what you’ll use to clean your phone.

It is an obvious thing to do, but it bears repeating. That you should wipe down your phone as often as possible. I love pre-moistened anti-bacterial wipes like Odourless Wipes or these stylish screen cleansing towelettes from Sephora. Still, you can buy full-size screen cleaning microfiber phone cleaning kits to keep at home.

Alternatively, you can make your screen cleaning solution from scratch. You need a small spray bottle, 8 ounces of rubbing alcohol, and 8 ounces of distilled water. Make sure that it’s distilled water. Tap water can leave behind a residue. A 50-50 mixture of white vinegar and distilled water also works. If you want to keep things organic, don’t mind the odor.

Bust Out the Q-Tips and Toothpicks

when it comes to cleaning crevices cracks, these tools are your best friends.

Those tiny crevices between the glass covering the display and the rest of the chassis store lots of gunk. My Dad’s favorite thing to do on a Sunday afternoon is pick at them with a plain wooden toothpick. It’s pretty disgusting to see what he excavates from the cracks in his smartphone, but he’s a contractor. That’s the only way to ensure his device stays relatively clean.

Get in there get and that grime out!

Try this yourself; rerun through the cracks with a dry cotton swab to clean out any residual dust. When you’ve finished for more challenging jobs. You can take a fresh cotton swab, dip it in a cleaning solution.  Then swirl it around on the camera lens and other parts of the smartphone chassis. Be thorough and gentle; you don’t want to scratch anything accidentally.

Consider Investing in a UV Sanitizer

You can nab a UV sanitizer to sanitize your devices with light!

If you’re a germaphobe, you can invest in a device that kills off germs with UV light. Try out CellBlaster’s Universal UV Cell one Sanitizer or Portable Multiuse UV Sterilizer. But honestly, killing germs with UV light is hit-and-miss. You still don’t get the crud off.

Don’t Forget to Wipe Down Your Headphones Too

If you opted for the UV blaster mentioned above. You can drop your earbuds in and take care of business that way every few days. If not, you can wipe each bud down with a soft cloth dampened with mild dish soap water.
Headphones are a bit trickier. You’ll want to use the same dish soap solution to wipe them down in their entirety. ( If the headphones include silicon covers, you can remove those and clean them separately with a toothbrush. For anything more serious, you’ll want to dip a cotton swap in rubbing alcohol to give it a thorough once-over. Then allow the headphones to dry completely before using them again.