This Is the Only Thing You Need to Clean a TV Screen

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Woman cleaning a TV
Andrey_Popov /

Forget magic liquid solutions and high-priced wipes — a soft cloth is all you need to clean your TV screen, according to Consumer Reports.

The publication notes that unlike older tube TVs — which could be cleaned with a window-cleaning solution like Windex — newer flat-screen TVs are “far more sensitive” and susceptible to scratching.

While plasma TVs have glass screens — like tube TVs — they also typically have an anti-glare coating that can be damaged if cleaned with chemicals and harsh wipes.

So, while you would think newer TVs require a high-tech cleaning approach, CR says that is not the case. In fact, a few passes with a dry soft cloth should do the trick.

CR photographer John Walsh cleans hundreds of screens every year. He says:

“Your best bet is to use a soft, anti-static microfiber cloth — the kind used to clean eyeglasses and camera lenses — and wipe in a circular motion. Gently wipe the screen with a dry cloth to remove dust and other debris, but don’t press too hard.”

You can buy this type of cloth at an office supply store or online.

CR suggests skipping kits that include a microfiber cloth and a small bottle of cleaning solution. These can cost up to $20, but the solution typically is mostly water.

If you need liquid help, try distilled water with dish soap — at a concentration of 100 parts water to 1 part soap — CR says.

More ways to save on cleaning

Buying high-priced TV cleaners is just one way to waste your money. In fact, many other cleaning products also are overpriced.

At Money Talks News, we regularly suggest ways to cut the cost of cleaning — in many cases, to just a few pennies. To learn more, check out stories such as:

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