I know what you’re thinking, “Keyboard maintenance? Seriously?” But trust me when I say, it’s as crucial as leveling up in your favorite online game or perfecting your typing speed for your upcoming job interview. One of the critical facets of keyboard maintenance, often overlooked, is lubing the switches. Not only does it make typing smoother, but it also eradicates scratchiness, reduces rattle in stabilizers, and might even facilitate faster typing. Now, who wouldn’t want that? Let’s delve deeper.
TL;DR: The frequency of lubing your keyboard switches depends on several factors, such as usage, switch type, and personal preference. As a rule of thumb, heavy keyboard users should re-lube their keyboards every six months, while average keyboard users can do it every one to two years.
Heavy Users Versus Average Users
It’s simple – the more you use your keyboard, the more frequently you should lube your switches. For heavy users, such as hardcore gamers and typists, it’s advisable to lube the keyboard every six months. For average users, on the other hand, you can let it slide up to one to two years. Remember, over-lubrication can lead to issues like making the keys feel too mushy when pressed or dampening the keyboard’s sound.
Keyboard Lubrication – A Game Changer
Lubing a keyboard switch is a science in itself. There are even comprehensive guides dedicated to it.
Once you’ve mastered the technique, you’ll realize it’s like the icing on the cake of your mechanical keyboard experience. The act of lubing isn’t just about the lube itself (though that plays a crucial role), but it’s also about the art of application. And as with any art, practice enhances perfection.
The Lube Matters
The adage “all that glitters is not gold” rings true for lubes as well. Not all shiny substances make for good lube. Sorry, olive oil and WD40 enthusiasts, but you need to keep these items away from your beloved keyboards. Using Vaseline is also not recommended as it contains petroleum jelly which can harm plastic components.
What you need is a good quality lube like Krytox 205g0. Why Krytox, you ask? Well, its shelf life is a whopping 20 years, and once applied, it can last from six months to a couple of years. A 5ml tube of this magical potion is enough to lube two full-sized keyboards. Check out this article about choosing the right lube for your mechanical keyboard switches.
All Switches Are Not Created Equal
It’s vital to recognize that all switches are not made equal, particularly when it comes to lubing them. For instance, linear switches need more frequent lubing than their tactile counterparts. The clicky switches, on the other hand, prefer to stay lube-free, staying true to their ‘click’ sound. You can find out more about what lubing does to different switches in this comprehensive guide.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How often should I lube my keyboard switches?
It depends on your keyboard usage. Heavy users, like gamers or typists, should re-lube their keyboards every six months. Average users can extend this to every one to two years.
2. Why should I lube my keyboard switches?
Lubing your keyboard switches can enhance your typing or gaming experience. It makes typing smoother, reduces scratchiness, gets rid of pinging sound in springs, and reduces rattle in stabilizers. Learn more about the benefits of lubing here.
3. What kind of lube should I use for my keyboard switches?
A common choice is Krytox 205g0. It has a shelf life of 20 years, and once applied, can last anywhere from six months to a couple of years. Steer clear of substances like olive oil, WD40, and Vaseline. Read more about choosing the right lube here.
4. Do all keyboard switches need to be lubed?
Not all switches necessitate lubing. Linear switches require more frequent lubing than tactile switches. Clicky switches generally do not require lube. If you’re uncertain about which switches you have or which ones might be suitable for you, check out this guide.
5. How can I lube my keyboard switches?
You’ll need tools like a small fine-tip brush, switch openers, and switch holders. A hot-swappable PCB can also be extremely handy. There are detailed guides available online, such as this one, that can walk you through the process.
6. Can I use too much lube on my keyboard switches?
Yes, using too much lube can change the sound of the keys back to the membrane board, reducing the tactility of the keys or making them feel too mushy when pressed. It’s crucial to apply the correct amount of lube to your keyboard switches.
To sum up, maintaining the optimal performance of your keyboard switches isn’t rocket science, but it does require attention and regular upkeep. From the type of switch to your usage patterns, various factors come into play. With a clear understanding and a dash of patience, you can extend the lifespan of your keyboard switches and enhance your typing or gaming experience. So, grab your fine-tip brush, switch opener, and your favorite lube, and show your keyboard some love!
Remember, your keyboard is an extension of you. Keep it smooth, keep it classy.