How to Clean Your Flat Screen TV Properly

If your flat screen TV is dirty, dusty or riddled with fingerprints, it might be a good time to give it a thorough cleaning.

However, knowing the right way to clean your TV might not be something you have expertise in.

Fortunately, we have the scoop on how to clean your flat screen TV properly. From materials and techniques to breaking down the cleaning process step by step, we’ve got you covered.

Follow these instructions, and your TV will look like new in no time.

Steps to Clean a Flat Screen TV

Buying a flat screen TV is an expensive investment. As a result, it is important to use the right cleaning techniques so that you won’t damage the screen or its electrical components.

Plus, a clean screen means a better viewing experience.

If you’ve been tempted to use glass cleaner or an all-purpose cleaning spray, we’re glad you came here first.

Harsh chemicals can damage your screen or leave a film that degrades picture quality, especially when it comes to plasma, 4K, LCD, LED or OLED TVs

These steps will cover what cleaning materials to use, how to use them and offer tips on keeping your flat screen TV dust free.

1. Turn It Off and Unplug It

Any time you clean an electronic device, it’s best to turn it off and unplug it to avoid the risk of shock.

Also, if you were watching TV prior to starting the cleaning process, let it cool down for at least 20 minutes.

Don’t skip this step. It keeps you safe and protects your flat screen TV. It also makes it easier to see splashes, fingerprints, dust and grime.

2. Wipe the Screen

For this step, you will need a dry, soft cloth that is lint-free. It’s ideal to have an anti-static microfiber cloth or towel.

You can purchase microfiber cleaning cloths made specifically for TVs. They look like a larger version of the cloth you use to clean your eyeglasses.

It’s relatively inexpensive to purchase these products. They usually come in a multi-pack, so they last a while. You can buy them online or at electronics stores like Best Buy.

Alternatively, you can use microfiber cleaning mitts or gloves. But, if you prefer a cloth, throw on a pair of rubber cleaning gloves to prevent adding fingerprints as you clean.

To clean the screen:

  1. Get a clean, dry cloth.
  2. Start in one corner of the screen and move across the TV in a circular motion. 
  3. If your cloth gets dirty, use another clean one to finish wiping.

Remember not to apply pressure as you clean your screen. You don’t want to inadvertently damage it.

Pro Tip: Resist the convenience of using paper towels or tissues. They can include harsh fibers or additives that may scratch the screen or leave streaks. This defeats the purpose of cleaning.

3. Tackle Hard-to-Remove Stains

After you’ve removed the loose dirt and dust, you can address stuck-on grime or stains. You’ll need a clean microfiber cloth to complete this step.

It’s important to never spray any water or cleaning solution directly onto your TV. Apply any moisture with a lint-free cloth.

To remove stains:

  1. Moisten the cloth with distilled water so that it is just slightly damp.
  2. Use a circular motion to wipe away the stain. It may take multiple passes.
  3. If the stain persists, use a 1:100 ratio of mild detergent and distilled water.
  4. Dab a little on the cloth to moisten it and wipe the stain in a circular pattern.
  5. After cleaning, wipe the area dry with a lint-free microfiber cloth.

Remember, only use this method if dry cleaning will not remove the stain. Also, never start with this method because you’ll just be applying moisture to dirt or dust, which could leave marks.

If you find that your TV is frequently stained, consider what happens around it. Perhaps you can move it to a different area of your home or raise it higher to avoid contact, fingerprints or liquids.

4. Clean the Frame

Once the screen is cleaned, you can wipe down the frame. The frame is not as delicate as the screen, but it still requires a gentle hand. 

You can use a microfiber cloth or mitt. You can also use a duster.

Check the vents to ensure they aren’t clogged with dust. If they are, give them a thorough cleaning to remove the dust.

To clean the frame: 

  1. Wipe the top and bottom TV frame, moving horizontally with the cloth.
  2. Then, wipe down the sides with a vertical motion.

If you’re using a TV wall mount and you are able to pull it forward, wipe down the back vertically. 

Otherwise, if your TV is on a stand, you’ll want to make sure it is stable while you clean. 

To avoid adding fingerprints, you can wear a microfiber glove and hold the TV with one hand while cleaning with the other.

5. Don’t Neglect the Remote

Your remote control is frequently touched, so it can get grimy and dusty. As a result, it’s important to include it in the cleaning process.

To keep your remote clean and sanitized:

  1. Remove the batteries.
  2. Turn the remote control over so that the buttons are facing down. 
  3. Gently tap the back of the remote with your hand to get rid of small debris.
  4. Using a clean microfiber cloth, wipe down the remote to remove dirt and dust.
  5. Make a diluted cleaning solution with water and rubbing alcohol.
  6. Moisten a clean microfiber cloth with the solution.
  7. Wipe down each part of the remote.
  8. Alternately, you can use an alcohol-based wipe for electronics.
  9. Use a dry microfiber cloth to wipe down the clean remote.
  10. Replace the batteries.

Pro Tip: If you need to deep clean between the buttons, you can use a cotton swab dampened with the diluted alcohol mixture. You can also use a dry toothbrush to dislodge crumbs or debris.

Why You Should Clean Your Flat Screen TV Regularly

You might be wondering why it’s important to clean your flat screen TV in the first place. Keeping your flat screen TV clean is beneficial for a few reasons.

These include:

  • Preventing the build-up of dirt and dust, which can cause scratches and stains
  • Cleaning vents can prolong the life of your TV
  • Allowing stains to sit can make them extremely hard to remove
  • Clean screens enhance viewing now and in the future

Ideally, you should clean your screen immediately if something sticky or liquid gets on it. 

As a rule of thumb, wiping your flat screen TV down weekly to remove loose dust and dirt is a good practice. Then, you’ll only need a more thorough cleaning once a month.

FAQs

If you still have questions about cleaning your flat screen TV, these answers could come in handy.

Which cleaning products are safe to use on my TV?

You can clean most flat screen TVs with a dry, anti-static microfiber cloth. If you need moisture, stick with distilled water and add a small amount of mild detergent, like Dawn or Ivory, for tough stains.

There are some pre-moistened cleaning wipes for flat screen TVs on the market. If you decide to buy them, be sure to follow the instructions. Also, check with your TV manufacturer’s customer service for recommended brands.

What products should I not use to clean my flat screen TV?

If you use a pre-made product, avoid ones with abrasive elements or harsh chemicals like benzene, acetone, alcohol or ammonia. While these are safe to use on removes, they can easily damage your delicate TV screen.

In addition, when using microfiber cloths, be careful to never launder them with liquid fabric softener or dryer sheets. These products can add a film to the cloth that can leave streaks on your TV.

Should I buy a cleaning kit for my flat screen TV?

It depends on your preferences. You can, but it is not necessary since you can use the DIY tips in this post to safely get your entire TV clean.

If you decide to buy a cleaning kit, be sure that it is recommended for your type of flat screen TV.

Are there differences between cleaning a flat screen TV and a tube TV?

Yes. Since a tube TV screen is made of glass, it’s much sturdier than a plasma, LCD, LED or OLED. 

While you can’t use glass cleaner on a flat screen TV, you can use it on a tube TV. That said, apply it with a clean, lint-free cloth as opposed to spraying the TV directly.

Summary

Flat screen TVs are a popular choice because of their sleek designs and low profiles. However, they require special care when it comes to cleaning.

Always unplug the TV before cleaning it. Use a soft, anti-static cloth to wipe down the screen. If the screen is smudged or stained, use a mild detergent diluted in water to clean it.

Never use harsh chemicals or abrasive materials to clean your flat screen TV. These could damage the surface and create permanent scratches. Once you’ve finished cleaning, dry the area with a soft, clean cloth. 

These simple tips will keep your flat screen TV looking like new for years to come and make your viewing experience much more enjoyable.