Spilled Water on a Mechanical keyboard? Complete Guide for What to Do & Not to Do

One of the worst things a keyboard can go through is the spilling liquid on it. We often eat and drink while using our system which might lead to the spilling of food and beverages on it. Thus, being a common problem.

If you could or could not recover and fix the Keyboard and reverse the damage, depends on the type of the keyboard. Along with this, if there is salt or sugar in the liquid that has spilled onto the keyboard, that might interact with the cables in the keyboard.

It is advisable to keep the liquids at a safe distance from the keyboard or any electronic component to make sure that your devices or system are safe.

Here is a complete guide to help you with the do's and don'ts if you are facing a similar issue of spilling water on the keyboard.

Spilled Water on Mechanical Keyboard – What to do?

Just as first aid is the most important after an accident, the same applies to the pc components as well. As soon as you notice spilled liquids o the keyboard, follow these steps-

Disconnect The Keyboard

Disconnect the keyboard from the system to stop current flowing into it. Because if the water comes in contact with the electricity, it may be harmful or even dangerous.

If you are using a wired keyboard, unplug it from the system to disconnect it. In case you are using a wireless keyboard, simply remove the batteries and it will be disconnected.

Flip it Over

If the keyboard still isn't working properly, disconnect it again from the system. After disconnecting the keyboard, flip it over and let the water drip out.

The water that has gotten into the switches will efficiently drain out. Under ideal conditions, you can let it sit flipped down overnight on a dry towel and the water will be completely dry.

Remove the WaterbyWater Immersion Method

If flipping over the keyboard does not prove helpful, try the water immersion method.

Though it might sound ridiculous, this method has been proven efficient in removing the water from the keyboard.

In case you have spilled some other liquid than water, then this technique is quite helpful in removing all the traces of it. Make a bath of cold water mixed with soap, immerse the keyboard into it, and give it a few shakes.

After that, remove the wet keyboard from the water bath, place it on a towel and let it dry itself out. The drying out process might take overnight so that all the components bathed in water completely dry up.

Reconnect The Keyboard

Once the keyboard has been kept on a towel for enough time, reconnect it to your system. Now check if all the keys are working well. If it is, you can now work worry-free.

If not, you might need to work some more on the keyboard like removing and replacing some malfunctioned keys and switches. You can easily do this on your own with some guidance.

Make Use of Lint-Free Cloth

You may need to open up your keyboard to clean the keyboards in case flipping the keyboard or the water immersion method does not work.

When you do so, keep the components in the open air for quite some. After keeping it that way for some time, wipe the components using a Lint-Free Cloth to wipe off the moisture.

A lint-creating cloth like this would ensure that no dirt or debris stays back in the form of lint to cause further issues in the keyboard.

Remove The Keycaps

If you find the keycaps getting sticky or behaving strangely after the liquid spill, you may need to remove the keycaps to clean the switches and stabilizers. You can remove the keycaps using a keycap puller, a paper clip, or a credit card.

You can rinse the sticky keycaps by rinsing them off with warm water or using an alcohol swab. Remove only those keycaps that you think are issues. Before you remove any of the keycaps, make sure to take a photograph of the Keyboard so that you can fix it back up properly.

Dismantle The Keyboard If Issue Not Solved

If the keyboard issue is not solved, you may need to dismantle the keyboard further. Analyze the exact issues by removing the components further.

If you cannot find the issues even after these steps mentioned above, you seem to have no other option than to get the keyboard replaced entirely. Take it to a professional service center if you want to check out the last option you may have left.

Always Use a Water-Resistant Keyboard

It is not entirely inevitable to not eat or drink while using the keyboard, the precautionary method you can take is using a water-resistant keyboard for your system.

This way, even if some liquid spills upon it, the keyboard would still be safe and would not be damaged. Thus, saving you the dollar.

Spilled Water on Mechanical Keyboard – What Not to Do?

While we have discussed the dos when you spill something on your mechanical keyboard, there are a few things that might worsen the conditions of a keyboard spilled with water. These actions are to be avoided at any cost.

Don’t Put Keyboard in Rice

While some people claim that keeping a wet keyboard in rice helps in the absorption of all the moisture in it, it's recommended that you avoid this action at all costs.

The soaking in rice method may be helpful for phones, it might cause further problems in the case of a keyboard.

The water and dry rice may lead to the formation of starch which, if it gets into the keyboard components, will surely cause higher damage.

Never Use Paper Towel

A paper towel is sure to dry your keyboard faster but do not use it. A paper towel, if used in wiping off moisture, may leave behind traces of the paper which would further add to the dust and debris in the keyboard.

The paper towels, tissues, and similar other options to handling your Keyboard are to be avoided as much as possible.

Things Never to Do with Your Mechanical Keyboard

General Keyboard or Gaming Keyboard, all keyboards require maintenance. Some points are to be kept in mind and followed regularly.

Never Spill Any Liquid on Your Keyboard

Try not to spill anything on the keyboard, liquid or solid edible on the keyboard. Water or any liquid does not go well with any electronic component. Even a drop of water can prove harmful to your pricey keyboard.

Spilled Soda or sugary drinks if spilled on the keyboard may make the keys go extremely sticky and collect debris into the keyboard along with the damage caused due to liquid.

Even if the keyboard is waterproof, the sugar coating may cause stickiness which is not good for the keyboard.

Never Forget to Clean It Frequently

Maintain your keyboard properly by cleaning it frequently. This is the prime step to ensure and enhance the life of the keyboard. If you are not careful enough about the proper cleaning of the keyboard, you may end up with different issues related to the keyboard.

By taking proper care of your mechanical keyboard, you can rest assured that it would last up to 10-12 years.

For cleaning the keyboard, you can opt for frequent cleaning (Cleaning the keyboard regularly) or deferred cleaning (completely cleaning the keyboard, by removing the keycaps and sanitizing it perfectly) from time to time and making a routine for it.

Follow Proper Cleaning Procedure

It is important to clean your keyboard quite often. However, it should also be seen which cleaning procedure you are following and if the technique is proper for your keyboard type and you are doing it correctly or not.

If you are using any chemicals or alcohol in cleaning, be careful with their usage. While opening the keycaps for deferred cleaning, make sure to use the proper method for removing the keycaps and placing them back on.

Use Proper Transportation

Transportation of your keyboard in the wrong manner can be yet another factor in the malfunctioning of your keyboard.

Carrying the keyboard to different places while tournaments or shifting your system should be safe and sound so that there are no damages to the keyboard. If not, you may end up with quite a few broken switches and keycaps or a damaged PCB.

Using a snug case and other protective gear to make sure that the handling of your Keyboard is proper proves to be quite beneficial. Using a keyboard sling can be another great practical option that can prove to be handy enough.

Final Thoughts

Your keyboard doesn't necessarily have to be permanently damaged after spilling water on it. You can disconnect your keyboard, dry it up and see that it works completely fine.

Even if it is soaked in water or soda, do not lose hope, you can make it work again using the tips mentioned above.

However, it is necessary that you take immediate action instead of panicking as far you waste more time, the liquid may seep deeper into the keyboard. Unplug the keyboard as soon as you notice water spilling on the keyboard.

If your keyboard doesn't work properly even after following the steps in this post, then your keyboard might have gone out of order. So, in that case, it is suggested that you visit a mechanic to fix the problem or replace the keyboard and find a new waterproof one.