Mr. Clean: Sanitizing Your Gaming Gear

Megan Bonnell

2020-03-04

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As coronavirus continues its world tour, you must do everything to prevent the threat. Sure, minimizing social contacts can be helpful: no nights out at a pub, corporate meetings or WoW fan-club sessions at a pizza parlor. But it’s not enough — the enemy might be closer than you think. It can be on your Astro C40 gamepad or HyperX headset right now...

Defense Shields, Activate!

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You already know the basics of Covid-19 prevention: 

  • Don’t shake hands;
  • Don’t touch your face when outside;
  • Wash your hands for at least 30 seconds;
  • Distance yourself from coughing/sneezing people.

But how can you protect your precious equipment? Sanitizing is the answer. These days they disinfect pretty much everything: subway stations, bus seats, supermarket carts, etc. Your Nintendo Switch or PS4 controllers could benefit from that policy too. But there are some rules and tips you should follow.

1. Not Every Cleanser Kills Microbes

Glass Plus or Seventh Generation are pretty good at cleaning glass surfaces. But they don’t disinfect. The same rule applies to most of the cleaners, sadly. But there’s a number of disinfectants that are officially confirmed as anti-Covid remedies:

  • Virasept;
  • Raptor 5;
  • Firebird F130;
  • Klericide 70/30 API;
  • Bleach Disinfectant Cleaner.

Of course, not all of them can be used for gaming gear. Like bleach — direct contact with it is quite dangerous and may lead to a chemical burn. Let alone its fumes are poisonous for the respiratory system.

But the list has two brands that are perfect for your stuff: Lysol and Clorox. In case in your city (or even state) the supply of Clorox is short, here’s what you can do:

  1. Take a soft paper towel;
  2. Get hydrogen peroxide (EPA-approved);
  3. Take the towel, fold it twice or thrice to make it thicker;
  4. Wet it with the anti-corona substance.

And a makeshift disinfectant wet wipe is ready! Remember to use a specifically soft paper towel — it won’t scratch your touchscreen or leave marks on the plastic surface. In case soft towels are gone from the stores too, soft toilet paper will do fine. Well, desperate times call for desperate measures!

Also don’t forget that any device must be turned off/disconnected before the procedure. While chances of you getting pikachued are minimal, your device may get irreversibly damaged. Let it dry afterwards.

2. No Spraying

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Whatever disinfectant you use, avoid spraying it over your gear. First, you will lose precise control over the situation and won’t know how much liquid has gotten inside your device. Second, you may damage charging ports or micro-controller. In the long run, this may lead to malfunctioning.

The only liquid that can be used for washing the insides of your gear is a gasoline-based degreaser. It’s not much of a sanitizer, but if you worry about general hygiene of the computer’s ‘intestines’ or want to remove fat stains from a gamepad — degreaser is your guy.

Note: Let the washed item go completely dry before using.

3. Don’t Rub

As we’ve mentioned already, you must use soft paper towels/toilet paper only. Your moves must be gentle, too — no violent rubbing or scrubbing. Just get the surface slightly wet for a half a minute. It’s enough to kill Covid-19. And to get to hard-to-reach parts of your stuff, use a cotton swab soaked in sanitizer.

So Long, Covid!

Follow these simple tips and chances of you contracting Covid-19 from the gaming gear will be as high as 0,01%. Stay safe, wash your hands all the time, and you’ll be fine and dandy. By the way, do you know any good disinfectants? Let us know in the comments!

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