How Long do Keyboards Last?

Beth Huston Profile image

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Updated June 27, 2022

The best keyboard will be able to stand the test of time. The biggest problem is figuring out what type will last the longest and what steps you can take to keep your keyboard in good shape. Of course, you might still wonder, “How long do keyboards last?”

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • There are multiple types of keyboards out there, and each has different levels of durability.
  • The most dependable keyboard available is the mechanical keyboard, known for its incredible durability.
  • You can take several steps to ensure your keyboard has a nice, long life, like cleaning it regularly and avoiding heavy typing.

Keep reading to find out more about keyboard longevity.

How Long Does a Keyboard Last?

Being able to count on your devices is crucial to a comfortable experience, and your keyboard is no exception. There are different styles of keyboards on the market, each with varying longevity depending on several factors. To start, knowing how a keyboard works will help you understand more about its longevity.

Insider Tip

Avoiding heavy usage of your keyboard will extend its life, so make sure you aren’t pounding on it while you’re typing.

Most keyboards come in one of two types (although others exist):

  • Membrane Keyboards
  • Mechanical Keyboards

There are pros and cons to either type. However, most standard keyboards are membrane keyboards, also known as rubber dome keyboards. They last roughly 5 years.

Mechanical keyboards, on the other hand, are specialty purchases. They’re built with durability in mind and can last 10 years or more.

Extending Longevity of a Regular Keyboard

If you’re of the more hands-on, do-it-yourself type and your keyboard just died, you can look into how to build a keyboard. But, if your keyboard is still kicking and, like most people, you want to keep it going as long as possible, you’ll want to do whatever you can to keep it from wearing out before its time.

Clean It Regularly

The entire keyboard will suffer if you allow debris to build up. Using a keyboard cover will help keep things dust and other debris from getting under the keys when not in use.

That said, even if you do use a cover, you’ll still want to clean it regularly. When you do, use appropriate cleaning techniques to avoid damaging your switches or other electronic parts of the keyboard. If you need some tips, we can tell you how to clean a keyboard.

Avoid Heavy Typing

Heavy typing will slowly damage your switches, regardless of whether using a computer or laptop keyboard. Try to strike the keys softly when typing to keep the switches in working order for as long as possible.

If you’re the type of person that gets a little rough with your keyboard, consider investing in mechanical keyboard switches instead of a membrane keyboard.

Invest in a Higher-Quality Mechanical Keyboard

While you may not want to spend the extra cash, you can’t go wrong investing in a high-quality mechanical keyboard. They’re built with durability and longevity in mind, while also providing a much more comfortable experience.

Warning

Keyboards that connect using a USB cable might cause an extra mess on your desk, so try to go with wireless models if you’re tight on space.

Even a low-cost mechanical keyboard can outperform the average membrane keyboard, so if durability is what you’re after, mechanical switches are the way to go.

F.A.Q.S

What is a wireless USB keyboard?

This style of the keyboard features a removable cable used for charging and a dongle that connects to your computer via a USB port. They’re a common choice for many users.


What are key switches?

Key switches are the little components underneath the keys of a keyboard. They register every keystroke, providing both auditory and tactile feedback.


What is a great keyboard for gaming?

That depends on what you’re looking for personally. Models with mechanical switches are prized by gamers for features like fast response times and N-key rollover. You may also want anti-ghosting features along with a high comfort level for a better gaming experience.


What should I look for in my keyboard?

Several features come in handy when looking for a new keyboard:

  • RGB lighting or LED lights
  • Superior switches for mechanical models
  • Wireless connectivity

STAT: In 2020, the wholesale value of portable keyboards was 109.34 million U.S. dollars. (source)

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