How to clean a phone charging port

Cleaning a phone with a toothpick
(Image credit: Future)

Knowing how to clean a phone charging port is an essential bit of maintenance for any of the best phones. Although many phones boast wireless charging these days, you don’t want to be left with it as your only option, and damage to the charging port can lead to more than just cable problems. 

Considering how often we use our phones, it’s understandable that all kinds of dust, dirt, and pocket lint can end up in the charging port — it’s the most exposed part of the device after all. That’s why it’s important to clean it regularly, but given how expensive and delicate phones can be, you go sticking anything into the port that will damage the electronics therein: metal objects or cleaning products, for example. 

Instead, you need to treat the charging port with care, and we're here to show you how. Here’s how to clean a phone charging port. For iPhone-specific instructions, be sure to check out our guide on how to clean an iPhone charging port.

How to clean a phone charging port 

Note: For the sake of safety, make sure your phone is turned off before you start cleaning the port.

1. Insert a toothpick

(Image: © Future)

Insert a toothpick into the charging port and gently move it from side to side. To ensure you don't damage any components, ensure the toothpick is made from either plastic or wood. Do not insert any metal implements into the charging port.

2. Gently scrape the toothpick on the port’s walls.

(Image: © Future)

Gently scrape the toothpick side to side. Make contact with the port’s walls to pull off any dust or lint that has built up inside and stuck to the walls.

3. Blast compressed air into the port.

(Image: © Future)

Blast compressed air into the port using either a hand or machine pump. Use short bursts, and if it's still not clean and/or you're experiencing charging issues still, alternate between compressed air and the toothpick.

There you have it, one shiny new charging port. If you’ve got a clear phone case that needs cleaning too, learn how to get it looking like new.

To clean your phone in a very different way try how to free up storage space, how to clear Android cache or give things a boost with 3 ways to speed up your Android phone.

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Andy Sansom
Trainee Writer

Andy is Tom’s Guide’s Trainee Writer, which means that he currently writes about pretty much everything we cover. He has previously worked in copywriting and content writing both freelance and for a leading business magazine. His interests include gaming, music and sports- particularly Formula One, football and badminton. Andy’s degree is in Creative Writing and he enjoys writing his own screenplays and submitting them to competitions in an attempt to justify three years of studying.