The Best Tutorial: How to clean your gaming controller grips?

The Best Tutorial: How to clean your gaming controller grips?

Picturing sweaty, warm hands fervently playing on a controller isn't pleasant. Yet, even with the utmost care, game controllers inevitably become magnets for dirt, grime, and bacteria. As another gaming year rolls around, now is the ideal moment to inspect and clean your gaming peripherals. Cleaning not only ensures better hygiene but can also extend the life of your controller. This guide compiles expert-approved cleaning methods to keep your controller in top shape.

Cleaning Essentials:

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, here's a list of items you will need:

  1. Alcohol wipes or alcohol spray (70% or higher)
  2. Canned air (optional, use with caution)
  3. Lint-free cloth
  4. Distilled water
  5. Toothpick or a wooden pick
  6. Q-tips
  7. Misting pump bottle (optional for diluting alcohol)
  8. Plastic straw (optional, for sticky buttons)

Steps to Cleaning Your Controller:

1. Safety First

Unplug your controller. If it’s wireless, remove any batteries.

2. Initial Inspection:

Before cleaning, examine "problem" areas that might harbor the most grime:

  • The "grip zone"
  • The edges where the controller's front and back plates join
  • Analog sticks
  • Charging, headset, and expansion ports
  • Any tight angles or crevices
3. Start with the Basics:

Gently wipe the controller with a damp lint-free cloth, focusing on any visible dirt.

4. Digging Deeper:

  • Use a toothpick to navigate tiny nooks, scraping out accumulated gunk.
  • If you opt for canned air, gently blow out loosened debris. Ensure the can is upright to avoid releasing liquid.
    5. Sanitization:

    Wipe the controller with alcohol wipes or a lint-free cloth soaked (and wrung out) in a mixture of isopropyl alcohol and distilled water. This not only cleans but also disinfects your controller.

    6. Attention to Detail:

    Clean the analog sticks carefully to remove any debris.

    For hard-to-reach edges, fold a piece of paper to create a firm, thin edge and glide it through those tight spaces.

    Avoid using metal objects as they can scratch or damage the controller.

    7. Sticky Situations:

    If any buttons or D-pads are sticky, carefully apply isopropyl alcohol using a Q-tip and repeatedly press the buttons to loosen any grime. A sliced plastic straw can also be slid down the sides of the buttons to dislodge obstructions.

    8. Ports & Grills:

    For charging ports or speaker grills, use a Q-tip dipped in rubbing alcohol. Avoid pushing too deep to prevent damaging internal pins.

    9. Dry & Test:

    Let the controller dry completely. Test it to ensure all buttons function correctly.

    10. When in Doubt:

    If the simple cleaning methods aren’t effective, consider disassembling the controller. Websites like iFixit provide comprehensive guides on taking apart controllers like the DualShock 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch Joy-Con.

    Maintenance Tips:

    • Regularly wipe down your controller, especially after intense gaming sessions.
    • Wash hands before gaming.
    • Avoid eating while playing.
    • Regularly clean crevices to minimize deep cleaning frequency.


    While it's essential to keep your controller clean for hygiene, functionality, and longevity, it's equally vital to follow the steps cautiously. With regular maintenance, you can ensure optimal gaming performance and a healthier gaming environment. And remember, while your controller is a key component, don't neglect other gadgets like your laptop or console; they too could benefit from a thorough cleaning. Happy gaming!

    Relasted Controller Recommendation:

    EasySMX 9124 Pro, the ultimate controller without sticks drift

    9124 Pro comes with both hall effect sensing joysticks & triggers. These use magnets to prevent any kind of drift or offset over prolonged use but also offer a slightly more accurate response time when using them in the game. Under the powerful hardware features, EasySMX 9124 Pro is 3x service life than normal controller.

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