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How to Clean Your Flat Screen TV

by Suzanne Kantra on May 01, 2009

It's easy to look at that big plasma or LCD TV as just another pane of glass, but don't use glass cleaner on it. Plasma and LCD TVs (as well as laptops and LCD monitors) have chemical coatings that can be damaged by the ethyl alcohol and ammonia in household cleaners.

Stick with cleaners that specifically state they're designed for flat screen TVs. Your first instinct may be that this stuff is snake oil, but we promise, it's not. Products specifically made for TV screens won't contain alcohol or ammonia, though their actually ingredients will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer (and may include distilled water, mild soap, vinegar).

Also make sure you use a clean, soft cloth. Microfiber or soft cotton works best. The wood fibers in paper towels, and even tissues, can scratch the chemical surface of TV screens.

Usually, cleaning solutions made for TVs can also be used for camera screens, laptops and cell phones. If you don't have any screen cleaner handy but need to do an emergency wipe, just use a soft cloth moistened with water. You can also make your own cleaning solution mixing 50 percent (no more than that) isopropyl (again, make sure it's not ethyl) alcohol and water, but alcohol-free commercial mixes are better. Always apply your cleaning solution to your cloth, not the TV. And above all, follow the advice in your TV's owner's manual.


Music and Video, TVs & Video Players, Cleaning, Tips & How-Tos

suggested products:

Audiovox Surface ($24.95) includes 6.75 fl oz and 2 fl oz bottles of alcohol-free solution plus two microfiber cloths.
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Monster ScreenClean ($19.95) includes one 6.75 fl oz bottle of alcohol-free solution plus a microfiber cloth.
Buy Now


Sanus Elements ELM101-X1 ($25) includes a 1.52 fl oz bottle of alcohol-free solution plus a unique tool that sports an anti-static dust-brush on one side and a microfiber cloth on the other.
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CleanDr Microfiber Cleaning Cloth ($14.99). Pack of three 12x12 microfiber cleaning cloths without a cleaning solution. If you don't have anything actually stuck to your screen, this is fine for daily dustings.
Buy Now

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