Skip to Content

The Number 1 Easy Way to Clean Your Nintendo Switch Fan

The Number 1 Easy Way to Clean Your Nintendo Switch Fan

There is no shame in admitting it – if you have had a Nintendo Switch for a while, chances are the fans are chock-full of dust. This can cause the fan to overheat and lose some of its outstanding performance capabilities. However, this isn’t something to feel embarrassed over. Dust collecting in the fans, along with debris, is entirely normal. But how exactly can you go ahead and clean the dust?

On your Nintendo Switch, you can keep the air vents clean by combining compressed air and a vacuum cleaner to sift out all of the dust. You can also remove any dust on the outside using items like a soft bristle brush and a Q-tip. This will help keep your Nintendo Switch clean and avoid overheating. 

However, the process of cleaning out your Nintendo Switch’s air vents isn’t as easy as it looks. So if you are looking for the step by step guide, you’re in luck! We have it all listed in this article! So keep reading and figure out how you can clean out the vents without causing any damage. 

How To Clean Your Nintendo Switch Air Vents

So, you want to remove the dust that has been collecting in your Nintendo Switch’s air vents for years. Before we start the process, let’s take a look at the things you will need to make this happen:

Once you have all of these things ready, you need to consider a few things. First of all, when using water, limit your use to simply dampness at most – there should never be water dripping. Only do this cleaning when the Switch is entirely powered off. Also, any cleaning will need to happen from the back to keep things moving in the right direction. Finally, never use any alcohol cleaners because they can damage the plastic casing of the Nintendo Switch. 

Here’s how you can clean your Nintendo Switch air vents: 

  1. Place a towel on the surface you want to work on.
  2. Please switch off the Nintendo and then place it face-down on the towel.
  3. Dampen a Q-tip and remove as much water as you can by squeezing.
  4. Clean the corners of the air vent until the Q-tip is clean when you stop. 
  5. Using the bristle brush, pull out any remaining debris and take it out of the air vent. 
  6. Switch on your vacuum cleaner and keep it close. 
  7. Place the nozzle of the compressed air, so it faces the rear vent on the left. Do not let it touch the vent. 
  8. Place the vacuum on the top vent on the Nintendo Switch.
  9. Keep the vacuum on and in place as you give a quick burst of compressed air. This will immediately disrupt any dust that is stuck on the inside of the air vent. The vacuum can then immediately suck it up.
  10. Repeat this process three times to ensure any dust is out of the system.
  11. Now, do the same process for the air vent on the right. 
  12. Please switch off the vacuum cleaner, and keep it aside.
  13. Clean the body of the Nintendo Switch with a lint-free cloth, especially the vents at the back.

You can now proceed and try and use your Nintendo Switch as usual. You will be most likely to notice that there is an immediate change in the level of performance your Nintendo Switch can carry out now. 

Related: Nintendo Switch or iPad? Our Top Pick

What Does The Nintendo Switch Air Vent Do?

The air vents on any kind of electronic device, especially of the caliber of the Nintendo Switch, are crucial. The air vents on this device help to keep it cool even when the device is handling a bunch of programs. There are two main ways that the Nintendo Switch lowers the temperature inside. This is through either passive or active cooling. 

Passive cooling happens because of casing or wiring around core components. For example, the battery heats up, but because the casing can conduct that electricity, it can become hot. However, the problem with the Nintendo Switch is that it has a primarily plastic casing, which is not the best conductor. 

Luckily, it has another mode through which it can bring the core temperatures down – this is the active cooling method. This happens because of the fan that pulls air through the internal system and cools it down. The air enters the vents, passes over the battery and the CPU, and takes some of the heat with it, and this is what cools down the CPU itself. 

Dust that collects in the vents over time makes it harder for air to pass through and adds heat of its own. That is why it causes the CPU to overheat. This can have disastrous impacts on your system and battery, so keeping the air clear of dust is the best course of action. 

Related: How to Clean Your Nintendo Switch Pro Controller

How To Prevent Dust Collecting In Your Nintendo Switch

We’ve talked about what happens with dust collecting in the air vent and the steps you can take to clean it out. However, there is one aspect that is missing so far, and that is prevention. While dust is normal, you can delay the collection of dust by taking a few precautionary steps. Here are some of the recommendations we have if you want to do so:

  1. Always keep your console in an open, ventilated area rather than inside a dusty drawer or shelf. 
  2. Don’t cram the Switch in with other things, and always give the air vents room to breathe.
  3. Do not bring the Switch out if you notice there is dust out and about. 
  4. Try not to use your Nintendo Switch around pets, as dander can fly in and cause the same problems. 
  5. Regularly clean and maintain your Nintendo Switch. 


Unfortunately, dust collecting in things over time is just a matter of life. You are bound to eventually get dust in your Nintendo Switch, especially if you have it for a long time. However, now you know how you can easily take care of this problem with one method. We hope this article was helpful, and you now know how to clean your Switch’s air vents!