Cleaning Tips, Guides & Resources

Experts' Guide to Cleaning Your Mobile Phone

Experts' guide to cleaning your mobile phone custom graphic

There is no point in washing your hands with soap and water regularly and wearing a face mask all the time if your cell phone is a petri dish for all types of germs and bacteria, many of which can put your health in grave danger.

We’re sharing these 6 helpful steps to properly clean your cell phone, according to health experts themselves.

It's no secret that the latest strain of the coronavirus COVID-19 is currently wreaking havoc on the entire planet.

Studies say that the virus can live on hard surfaces such as stainless steel and plastic for up to 3 days, and for up to an entire day on cardboard. Needless to say, the World Health Organisation has recommended hygiene protocols to steer clear of COVID-19 you should avoid touching surfaces that are likely to be contaminated, and also wash your hands thoroughly after touching them (a twenty-second wash, seems to be the benchmark).

There is a possession of yours that may be harbouring germs. It's none other than your mobile phone — the one that you use over 3 hours a day on average.

Charnell goes on to say that ‘Your cell phone may be the coolest gadget on the planet because it can do all sorts of things, but it can also be the dirtiest possession that you own!’

She says that ‘This is why cleaning your cell phone regularly is a good idea. Especially now that getting sick is not an option, eliminating bacteria and viruses that could be turning your mobile device as their playground is of utmost importance. It's just as important as washing your hands with soap and water, using a hand sanitizer, and donning a face mask.’

Expert-approved Steps on Cleaning Your Cell Phone


Remove the Case

man is glueing protective carbon film smartphone

The use of a protective case or cover is a smart move as it can help keep scratches, dings, and dents at bay.

However, it can also increase the number of places on your cell phone that germs can thrive in. This is why you should remove the case or cover before cleaning your mobile device.

Doing this exposes just about every surface of your mobile device that needs to be thoroughly rid of dirt, grime, and more importantly germs.

Switch Off Your Phone

Male hands getting sim card slot

Switch off your phone before following any of these mobile phone cleaning tips. This is especially true because it involves the use of diluted rubbing alcohol. Before proceeding, turn off your mobile device first.

Your text messages and chats can wait, but your health and safety always come first. If you are currently charging your phone, unplug the charger and temporarily switch off your phone.

Use Diluted Alcohol

Woman treats her phone with antiseptic

Removing dirt and grime on your cell phone is not enough. You should also try to eliminate germs from your electronics. To do this, you will need the help of rubbing alcohol.

However, it's a terrible idea to douse your mobile device with undiluted rubbing alcohol. In a small spray bottle, combine equal amounts of 70% rubbing alcohol and water. Shake and spray on the tip of a microfiber cloth, then wipe your cell phone. Use the dry section of the microfiber cloth immediately after to remove any leftover residue.

Clean the Case, Too

woman hands is wiped clean mobile phone

The same mix of rubbing alcohol and water should also be used for cleaning your mobile phone's protective case or covering.

If it's made of plastic entirely, you may clean it with soap and warm water. Use a cotton swab dampened with a little diluted rubbing alcohol or water to clean every nook and cranny.

Make sure that the case or covering is thoroughly dry before you put your mobile back in.

Avoid Harsh Chemicals

hand pumping alcohol gel spray

It can be tempting to use household cleaning products on your cell phone to make sure that it's sparkling clean.

According to the experts, this should be avoided at all costs as it can damage your mobile device. Window cleaner, metal polisher, bleach, hydrogen peroxide, white vinegar are chemicals you should never allow to come into contact with your cell phone.

It can affect not only the paint of your mobile device but also the coating of the touchscreen necessary for it to be responsive.

Rely on a Toothpick

maintenance man opening smartphone

There are places on your cell phone that a microfiber cloth cannot reach. They include the charging port, headphone jack, speaker grills, and the areas around the camera lens.

Inspect these areas and use a wooden toothpick to remove dirt and other foreign objects. Remember to do this as cautiously as possible, avoiding pushing the wooden toothpick deep into crevices as this can damage your mobile.

Keep It Germ-Free

Woman using alcohol spray tissue clean mobile phone

Now that your cell phone is thoroughly clean and germ-free, it's important to keep it that way. This helps deter the accumulation of dirt and grime, and more importantly the growth of bacteria and viruses that can put your health in jeopardy.

Make sure that your hands are clean before you clutch your cell phone. Avoid pressing it against your face during a phone call. It's a good idea to stash your mobile device in a pouch when not in use to keep it clean.

As you can see, it's not that difficult to clean your cell phone. Following these simple steps above allows you to get rid of germs thriving on its surface, waiting for the opportunity to invade your body and wreak havoc on your health.

It's also a good idea to change your habit when it comes to handling your mobile device to keep your phone clean and avoid having to do the above-mentioned steps over and over again.

Whether it's a mobile phone, tablet or headphones/AirPods once the germs begin to spread to surface areas, you may have to utilize a professional cleaning service to schedule a sanitize cleaning.

The BBC has an awesome video on properly sanitizing your phone.


Check out our cleaning blog for more comprehensive guides on cleaning and maintaining your home.

Adriana Aziz is the operations manager at MaidForYou. With over 6 years of experience managing cleaning operations, she knows all the best hacks when it comes to cleaning residential and commercial buildings. With expert experience in managing house cleaning operations, interior design and logistics. She spends her free time with her family and as a freelance food critic.

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