Getting oil off of alum macbook keys

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by thecoffeebean, Feb 15, 2009.

  1. thecoffeebean macrumors newbie

    Feb 15, 2009
    Hi everyone,

    I bet this question has been posted already, but I'm new so I will post it anyway. What is the best way to get the oil from my fingers off of my macbook keys? I've heard different things from Magic Eraser to toothpaste, so I'd really appreciate it if any of you could let me know what your experience has been. I've only had my macbook for a few months but I'm a law student so I use it all the time and now the keys are shiny. Gross, I know. Help please!

  2. domcole macrumors regular

    May 17, 2008
    The 'Search' button is your friend :rolleyes:
  3. Mr D macrumors 6502

    Oct 11, 2007
    These are probably the worst posts on forums, JUST telling someone to search. Think about it, you're sitting there on your computer, someone posts a thread about a topic, and you tell them to search. The next person who searches will run into this thread, and receive no useful information. How stupid can forum members be? Why not answer the question and then lead the person to search?

    I don't know the answer, and I've search finger oil and "remove oil" for this forum, and nothing useful came up.
  4. uicandrew macrumors 6502a

    Jan 19, 2006
    so just because you're new gives you the right to post another thread?

    it gives you NO right at all.

    I've actually answered this question before, so i know it exists.

    so SEARCH!

    I've already spent the time to type in a response in other thread about how to clean it, so why should i put forth the effort to type it again while encouraging lazy bums to not do any work of their own. I'm not going to be an enabler.

    It's about keeping the forums neater so it isn't clogged up by posts like "what is the best sleeve for my macbook" or "how to i get the grime off my white macbook" (the latter question has been answered many times since 2006)
  5. The Samurai macrumors 68000

    The Samurai

    Dec 29, 2007
    Chill out ladies.

    I use 'iKlear' (available from Apple stores) and works pretty good.

    Toothpaste @ lol
  6. Stetrain macrumors 68040

    Feb 6, 2009
  7. yoppie macrumors 6502a

    Oct 19, 2007
    I don't have an aluminum MacBook so I'm not 100% sure if this will work for you but I use iClean ( on my black MacBook and it works pretty well for removing oil off the keyboards. I also have an iSkin keyboard cover for my keyboard.
  8. domcole macrumors regular

    May 17, 2008
    You need to relax yourself. Okay, admittedly nothing came up as 'oil on keys' or what have you however there has been numerous posts on getting 'stuff' off your Macbook keys.

    I have no idea how long you have been a member on this forum, I'm not a regular poster myself but I always keep an eye on what posts are coming up. Even I can recognise that there has been loads of threads about keys.

    Sorry thread starter, I didn't mean to come across rude. Along with another person I thought it was strange to say that you would post it anyway cause your new.

    Lol, it's not a regular occurrence that people are getting oil on their Macbook so there won't be pages of "oil on my Macbook keys" would there?
    Learn to use the search button effectively.

  9. uicandrew macrumors 6502a

    Jan 19, 2006
    that's is a great cartoon. It made me chuckle.

    what amazes me are the posts that go on forever (especially the debates about $400 dell vs $2000 macbook)

    What is equally amusing is the fact that the OP leaves the "conversation" after the first 2 pages of the thread, and the argument sprawls on for 7+ pages.

    and there's always the possiblity that 1/2 of them are trolls, which is why I usually don't engage in long winded replies, and reply when I have an "original" thought or an opinion that I can back up with evidence, and if they don't agree with the evidence, then I'll walk away from the conversation, for the same reason the above cartoon suggests :)
  10. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    I love it when people come here, and nearly all their posts in this forum is, "You should do a search". I'm not talking about you, but there are a handful of people who probably just copy and paste the same "Search first" reply into each thread.

    I don't really feel like anyone really has a right to get pissy in any of the HELP forums due to a repeat thread. If it pisses you off so much, then don't post here. If you don't want to help because someone started a new thread, then why didn't you leave after the first week? :confused: One week is probably the amount of time it takes to see every type of help thread imaginable in this forum. ;) Every new thread is a re-hash in some way, so getting pissy about it is pointless.

    I've been here for 7 years, and I don't get pissed off from repeat threads. If I don't want to answer someone's question, I don't post, or I avoid the threads that look like they were recently asked.
  11. uicandrew macrumors 6502a

    Jan 19, 2006
    i'm here because I enjoy helping other people. specifically, I enjoy helping people who have already tried to help themselves.

    My ideal threads are the ones that start off with "this is my problem, this is what i've tried, but i'm stuck here so please help."

    there was a thread where someone was having hardware problems. I was the FIRST to reply and suggested running a hardware test, and said how to do it. Other people chimed in and some agreed with me with the hardware test suggestion. FINALLY, at post 20, the OP simply writes "how do i do a hardware test?" Those types of people infuriate me; they waste my time and their own.

    and the OP of this thread has the gall to suggest that because he is new, that he can waste other people's time instead of doing some legwork of his own.

    but i should take a page from your book and learn to ignore threads. but part of me just want to dissuade others from encouraging/enabling laziness
  12. The Rabbi macrumors newbie

    Feb 15, 2009
    No offense, but are you not wasting more of your time by going off on long winded rants about nothing as opposed to simply typing, 'try water or such-and-such a spray'? I have to have a laugh at someone who claims he or she isn't willing to waste their time on someone whom cannot perform a simple search, yet goes on to write multi-paragraphed rants. That's what we call irony. Lighten up and relax, friend... it's the internet.

    Have a nice day.
  13. thecoffeebean thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 15, 2009
    sorry, everyone, I didn't mean to cause a fight at all. i just wanted to see if anyone had updated experiences with getting oil off since i saw a lot of conflicting threads in other forums. thanks to those who gave me an answer to my question.
  14. dL. macrumors 6502

    Nov 5, 2007
    Seriously, I hate people who tell others to search too. There's a reason why this is a forum and not Google. It's meant for discussion. If you feel the need to help someone, then reply and perhaps link them to the appropriate place for an answer, otherwise click the BACK button located on the top left of your browser and move on with your life. IMO, it's rude. It's somewhat like asking a customer service rep in a mall where the nearest washroom is and the rep tells them to LOOK AT THE DIRECTORY MAP.

    Anyways, I appreciate the OP asking because it's something that my gf would like to know and it happened to be an "ACTIVE" thread that I stumbled upon.

    My take would be to try Mr. Clean's Magic Eraser. It seems to have clean everything for me including the keys I have for my white keyboard. So give that a try :)

    OT: LOL stetrain I love that pic!!

  15. 5280m macrumors member

    Jan 16, 2009
    The people at the apple store told me to use a lint free cloth with rubbing alcohol.
  16. uicandrew macrumors 6502a

    Jan 19, 2006
    I understand the irony of the situation. but the PRINCIPLE remains that I have NOT answered a question what the OP did not attempt to find the answer himself.

    I am relaxed, and i thoroughly enjoyed the cartoon that Stetrain posted.

    and since the OP has indicated that he/she has looked in other threads, I will gladly throw in my 2 cents.

    Magic Eraser is a bit extreme, it is mostly used to get the grime out of the plastic/rubber of the whitebooks. i mean, you need to use elbow grease.

    Toothpaste is just funny.

    iKlear is just plain TOO expensive.

    I suggest, from personal experience, to go to walmart's vision center, and buy their eyeglass cleaner kit. it contains a small travel spray bottle (free refills!), microfiber cloth, and a mini screwdriver. all for $2-3

    I have refilled it many times since buying my kit in 2001. The bottle's pump mechanism is now broken, so i will buy another one. Not bad for 8 years of use. iKlear costs $12+shipping handling. do the math

    Please clean your keys ASAP. one forum member claims that the oil marks are permanent. And the unibody has only been out for 5 months.

    I am currently using Moshi's ClearGuard to pre-emptively prevent the oily fingerprints. $25 shipped. it's the thinnest one available that has a perfect fit for all the keys except for the top row (function keys) because it was designed for use with the pre-unibody macbooks.

    good luck.
  17. mac&cheesey macrumors 6502

    Dec 21, 2008
    cleaning the keys

    I've had good success with Lysol brand moist wipes. They come in a platic jar-type of container. Take one towelette, squeeze out the excess moisture (they can be a bit too moist if you don't do this) and wipe the keys and palmerst areas.

    Works great for me so far. I have also used Handy Wipes brand moist wipes as well though they don't clean quite as effectively, in my experience.

    Good luck,
  18. thecoffeebean thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 15, 2009
    So I started this thread and just wanted to say that I have learned the hard way not to believe the people at the Apple Store all the time. I just bought iKlear upon the reassurance it would get the oil off my macbook keys but NO IT DIDN'T WORK!! It got a little bit off but I can still see it. Grr. Goodbye, $20 and hello, annoyance.
  19. NewMacbookPlz macrumors 68040


    Sep 28, 2008
    What you're seeing on your keys may not even be skin oils, but the plastic smoothing from friction of contact. The keys are known to do that, and they'll look shiny, but it's just because the plastic is being slowly worn.
  20. fireman13 macrumors 6502

    Aug 12, 2008
    Florida Panhandle
    this is good advice, it's what I use and works great. The alcohol dries super quick. This is a no brainer but remember tobput the alcohol on the cloth and no on the keys.
  21. acfusion29 macrumors 68040


    Nov 8, 2007
    omg... that's because it's not OIL left on your keys. The keys are worn, this happens to ALL keyboards. Some keyboards (such as the prev. generation MBP) don't show the wear, but it's still there if you look at it from an angle with some light.
  22. Kardashian macrumors 68020


    Sep 4, 2005
    Its not the oil - its keys wearing down.

    The keys on my Unibody MBP have gone to shine hell a lot faster than my Blackbook ever did.

    I'm trying to find replacements so I can stick a keyboard protector on top as they look REALLY shiny.
  23. thecoffeebean thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 15, 2009
    Hey Kardashian, if you find replacement keys that match the one on the alum macbook, please let me know! Thanks
  24. Kardashian macrumors 68020


    Sep 4, 2005
    eBay.. but they're bloody expensive!

    £4 a key roughly.

  25. rgarjr macrumors 603


    Apr 2, 2009
    Southern California
    What I'm wondering is, is apple aware of this flaw they have with their black keys on their keyboards? You would think they should sell a replacement kit which would have all the keys. :rolleyes:

    Have any of you go out to the apple stores and complain about these shiny keys?

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