If you want to know how to take your PS3 apart to clean it, you're wading into dangerous territory. Taking apart your console is a great way to void the warranty, and if you're not gentle with the components or can't figure out how to reassemble everything, you'll end up with a very clean PS3-shaped brick. But if you're confident of your abilities or you've already voided your warranty, proceed!
To take your PS3 apart to clean it, you will need:
- Small Phillips head screwdriver
- Canned compressed air
- Soft, static-free cloth
- Torx screwdriver
- Low-powered vacuum cleaner (optional)
There are ways to clean a PS3 without voiding your warranty. These methods are not nearly as effective as the full dismantling and reassembly, but you might be able to get some mileage out of these safer techniques.
- Maintenance If you're clean and careful, you can make your console last for a very long time without a full cleaning. Make sure to dust the area around the PS3 regularly, wipe down the surfaces of the console, and don't let smokers anywhere near your gaming baby. If you're looking for a good excuse to stop smoking, just think of the PS3!
- Power Down Turn off your PS3. You don't want to be messing around with electronics while power is flowing, and it's just good practice to turn off and unplug anything that you're thoroughly cleaning.
- Fan-Service Dust tends to collect in the vents. This is very bad for airflow, which is in turn very bad for your hardware's health. Blocked airflow can cause fans to malfunction and key components to overheat. Use compressed air to dislodge any dust particles. Turn your PS3 back on, and the fans should be able to eject any remaining dust from the system. If this still isn't working, use a vacuum cleaner on a low setting to suck dust out of the vents. Be careful, though! This process can damage your fans to the point of failure.
- Hard-Drive Removal Making sure the PS3 if off, carefully remove the hard drive, wipe it down using a soft, dry, static-free cloth, and reinsert it as detailed in your PS3 user's manual. This probably won't help much, but it can keep hard drive temperatures down if it's running hot.
Ready to take the plunge? You're about to void the warranty of a very expensive piece of equipment. Do not proceed unless you're encountering problems that cannot be solved using other means, and understand that Sony won't help you out if you mess something up.
- Prepare Set your unit in a brightly lit static free space. Avoid carpeting, and be sure that you have ample room to set screws and components so that they don't roll away or get lost.
- Begin Surgery Pry off the rubber feet at the bottom of the unit. Use the Torx screwdriver to remove the screws hidden underneath. Slide the cover up and remove. Unscrew the seven long screws that now remain, and pull the casing gently apart to find the true innards.
- Gentle Care Lightly rub down dusty components. If you must, you can remove further pieces, but be sure to remember where and how they go back in.
- Reassemble Put everything back, screw the case together, and test to make sure everything works. Take a deep breath. You've cleaned where few have cleaned before!