How to clean classic Mac Pro?

macmesser

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2012
848
71
Long Island, NY USA
I have a flashed Mac Pro 5,1 (2009) which has not been cleaned in a while and looks like it's getting dusty. What's the best way to clean a classic Mac Pro so dust doesn't cause overheating? Aside from vacuuming or blowing, is there anything else that needs doing, such as applying anti-static?
 

h9826790

macrumors G5
Apr 3, 2014
14,263
6,861
Hong Kong
I have a flashed Mac Pro 5,1 (2009) which has not been cleaned in a while and looks like it's getting dusty. What's the best way to clean a classic Mac Pro so dust doesn't cause overheating? Aside from vacuuming or blowing, is there anything else that needs doing, such as applying anti-static?
Wear anti static band or even gloves.

Ground yourself (automatically done when you touch the cMP metal case).

Physically disconnect power from the wall.

Highly recommend move the cMP to outdoor area.

Open it up. Pull out the CPU tray. Use a duster (like this one) to clean it. No need to go too extreme. Just blow out most very obvious dust is good enough.

For "deep cleaning", you may take out the GPU and PSU for better clean.

When cleaning a blower type graphic card. Blow from the exhaust will push the dust coming out from the front.

For PSU. If very dusty, you have to take it out for a good blow. But for normal cleaning, just open the optical cage, and apply good blow back and forth a few times usually good enough.

IF you applied COMPRESSED AIR. It is recommended you wait for something like 30min before you put everything together again and power it up. But for duster, there should be no moisture, and I clean my cMP every 1-2 week. Always power it up straight away after cleaning. No problem at all.
 
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ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Sep 21, 2010
9,520
6,774
I have a flashed Mac Pro 5,1 (2009) which has not been cleaned in a while and looks like it's getting dusty. What's the best way to clean a classic Mac Pro so dust doesn't cause overheating? Aside from vacuuming or blowing, is there anything else that needs doing, such as applying anti-static?
Vacuums can generate a massive amount of static, so don't use one unless it is specifically an anti-static vacuum for a computer. Use cans of compressed air meant for dusting computers.

Don't let the compressed air spin the fan blades to a zillion RPM, that's not good.
 
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macmesser

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2012
848
71
Long Island, NY USA
Wear anti static band or even gloves.

Ground yourself (automatically done when you touch the cMP metal case).

Physically disconnect power from the wall.

Highly recommend move the cMP to outdoor area.

Open it up. Pull out the CPU tray. Use a duster (like this one) to clean it. No need to go too extreme. Just blow out most very obvious dust is good enough.

For "deep cleaning", you may take out the GPU and PSU for better clean.

When cleaning a blower type graphic card. Blow from the exhaust will push the dust coming out from the front.

For PSU. If very dusty, you have to take it out for a good blow. But for normal cleaning, just open the optical cage, and apply good blow back and forth a few times usually good enough.

IF you applied COMPRESSED AIR. It is recommended you wait for something like 30min before you put everything together again and power it up. But for duster, there should be no moisture, and I clean my cMP every 1-2 week. Always power it up straight away after cleaning. No problem at all.
Thanks for detailed run down. I never thought about moisture from canned air. Will get one of those cloths.

Vacuums can generate a massive amount of static, so don't use one unless it is specifically an anti-static vacuum for a computer. Use cans of compressed air meant for dusting computers.

Don't let the compressed air spin the fan blades to a zillion RPM, that's not good.
Thanks for tips. Will make sure I use computer vacuum if I don't just blow. Hadn't thought of it, but I can see that spinning a fan fast would be risky.
 

fastlanephil

macrumors 65816
Nov 17, 2007
1,211
235
I think I’ll wait for a warm day next spring so I can take it outside to blow it out. It’s pretty easy to remove the CPU tray and the optical cage for cleaning on my 4,1.

I checked out YouTube videos about cleaning your cMac Pro. They were all pretty lame but this one looks like a joke.

 
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macmesser

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Aug 13, 2012
848
71
Long Island, NY USA
I think I’ll wait for a warm day next spring so I can take it outside to blow it out. It’s pretty easy to remove the CPU tray and the optical cage for cleaning on my 4,1.

I checked out YouTube videos about cleaning your cMac Pro. They were all pretty lame but this one looks like a joke.

[should be fine/QUOTE]

A warm winter's day should be fine, as I found recently. I invested in a blower. It doesn't have the blast power of canned air but it's close from a practical standpoint. Plus, it's ozone friendly and cheaper over a few years for my two cMPs.
 

splifingate

macrumors 6502
Nov 27, 2013
439
267
ATL
FWIW, I semi-annually take my Beasts outside, open the side panel, and take my Stihl hand-held blower to 'em till the air clears . . . not exactly surgical, but it definitely gets the dust out ;)

Regards, splifingate
 
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tpivette89

macrumors 6502
Jan 1, 2018
499
259
Middletown, DE
I usually take out everything... optical cage, hard drive trays, all PCIe cards, and CPU tray. Then I spray everything inside the case with compressed air and follow up with a wipe down of the insides (aluminum framework) with a microfiber cloth soaked with isopropyl alcohol. Finally, a last spray down with compressed air.

For the logic boards, I usually just spray them down with compressed air in the first and third steps listed above. Unless there is heavy buildup (for example, if I just purchased a machine), then I take a Q-tip soaked in alcohol and go to town, followed by a thorough drying with compressed air.

Finally, all the removed components get the same treatment... compressed air, isopropyl alcohol, and more compressed air. Then, reassembly of all related parts, a wipe down of the exterior chassis, and I'm treated to a like-new machine.

Never had any problems doing it this way.
 
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