How To Clean A Remote Control

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How to properly clean a remote control without causing damage to it.

Did you know that the family remote control gets a lot of dead skin, stickiness and grime on it, every single day?


This is why you should be cleaning the remote control in your home often, if not daily.

Remote controls for the TV, Cable box, and other media players are used often and the fingers that often touch these items are not always the cleanest. This is why you should clean and disinfect the remote control often.

Routine cleaning of high-touch surfaces can protect you and your family from common viruses that spread around the home. This includes light switches, remote controls, and common tables.

Viruses can sit and survive on surfaces for hours, and sometimes days which is why you should take extra care to clean those high touch areas as often as you can.

In your home, I do a nightly routine that includes sanitizing all doorknobs, light switches, and common areas that your kids and husband are always in contact with.

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Cleaning Products You Need To Clean The Remote

Cleaning Products You Need To Clean The Remote

Before you can think about cleaning the remote control, there are some cleaning products you should gather.

  • Rubbing alcohol and water (50/50 mix)
  • Cotton swabs
  • A cleaning toothbrush
  • A microfiber cloth.

Rubbing alcohol is a great product to clean your home with. If you prefer to use Lysol or other disinfectant cleaners, just make sure that there is enough water in the solution to prevent discoloration on the remote control.

It is recommended that you wear disposable rubber gloves when needing disinfectants and also make sure the area you are working in is you well ventilated, you can always open a window if the weather allows.

ow To Clean A Remote Control

How To Clean A Remote Control

In order to clean your remote control, you’re going to have to remove the batteries and place them aside.

Use a dry cleaning toothbrush to clean out any debris that may be on the remote control and in between any buttons. Start at the top of the remote and work your way down, just as you should do when cleaning the house.

Next, well want to grab a microfiber cloth and mist it with your rubbing alcohol and water mixture, (or another cleaner of your choice) making sure that the cloth is not soaking It, but lightly misted.

Continue to wipe down the remote control with the microfiber cloth. You might have to press down a little harder on the buttons if there is debris in the rubber crevices.

If there are any harder to clean your spots on the remote control, simply rub the spot with your moist microfiber cloth in circular motions until the spot is gone.

You want to make sure there is no liquid that will seep into the remote control, so be sure to only use a lightly misted cloth.

If there are still problem spots of grime on your remote control, grab a cotton swab and rub it with your rubbing alcohol mixture. Continue to use the swab to remove any remaining grime on the remote control.

Once your remote control is completely dry (it never should have been very It in the first place) you can replace the batteries and start needing your freshly cleaned remote control.

If You Need To Take Apart Your Remote Control

If You Need To Take Apart Your Remote Control

If your remote control is very dirty, then you might have to take it apart. Always use caution when taking apart your electronics. Here is a helpful video I found for you if you need to do a deeper clean than the method I showed you.

Remote Control With UV Light

Disinfecting Remote Control With UV Light

After you finish cleaning the remote control, you can use a UV Light Sanitizer to kill any remaining germs on the remote. Remember that this UV Light Sanitizer Machine will not get a remote clean from dirt, but it will kill germs.

A UV Light Sanitizer is like a tanning bed for your remote control, and many other household products.

How To Clean A Remote Control

Frequently Asked Questions About How To Clean A Remote Control

How would u clean battery acid from leaky batteries in your remote?

You’ll want to be very careful when removing battery acid out of your remote control. First, you’ll want to track down some white vinegar or lemon juice. Then you can use a microfiber cloth or a cotton swab and dip it into the acid solution, making sure it is not too It when cleaning the affected area. Dab the battery acid away with the lemon juice and once everything is dry you can place the batteries back into your remote. You will have to be patient in this process as it could take a little bit of effort to get the battery acid off the remote.

Can I use alcohol wipes to clean a remote control?

If you have alcohol wipes at home you can clean the remote control with them. Just be sure to not make the remote to It as this can damage it.

What to do if you washed your remote?

Your remote might be toast, but it might not be. You don’t know until you dry it out completely. You can place your remote control into a container of rice for 24 hours as one method. Another thing you can do is use a hairdryer on a low cool heat setting to dry it out as much as you can. Always remove the batteries until the remote has dried off completely.

How To Clean A Remote Control Do's And Don't

How To Clean A Remote Control Do’s And Don’t


  • Do disinfect often, as often as daily if you can needs toer that kind of routine.
  • Do clean the remote first and then continue to sanitize after
  • Do remove the batteries before you clean
  • Do place the battery cover back on after removing batteries
  • Do use your user guide
  • Do use 70% rubbing alcohol
  • Do use a cotton swab or a microfiber cloth


  • Don’t spray the remote
  • Don’t use a coarse towel or cloth that can damage the remote
  • Watch out for LCD screens on remote controls
  • Don’t use too much bleach as bleach can discolor the remote
  • Don’t use aerosol sprays
  • Don’t use a paper towel as they fall apart and get caught between the rubber buttons
How To Clean And Sanitize Remote Controls

How To Clean And Sanitize Remote Controls

If you’re like me and you like to keep your home as germ-free and as clean as possible, then you might want to consider starting a daily cleaning routine and including sanitizing your remotes, door handles, and light switches.

If you have many people living in your home, I would highly suggest that you clean your remote controls, and any video game controllers as often as you possibly can. You can also add cleaning the keyboard and mouse to your cleaning routine if you’re really eager – I won’t judge.

More Electronic Cleaning Tips

How To Clean A Remote Control

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Check out the planner!

You can also grab a copy of my cleaning planner, The Get It Clean Cleaning Planner here on the site. It’s packed full of extremely practical tips and tricks and checklists that can help you get your house clean, and keep it clean once and for all.

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