A key puller is a simple tool, which is used to extract the keys of a mechanical keyboard safely and easily. However there are different types of them, some are widely used while others are used only in extremely expensive keyboard models. That is why we have made a list of the different types of key pullers that exist on the market.
Having a tool with which to remove the keys to clean or change them is essential, the keys wear out or can even break, so it is time to change them. You may even have bought a set of keys that you like more for some reason, whatever the case, you need a key puller and that is why we present you the different options.
Types of keypuller
The best known key pullers are those made of wire and those with a plastic ring, but there are different types, some of them you may not have heard mentioned, others you will remember that strange piece that came with the keyboard and you did not know what it was for and what you left lying around. The answer to its use? It is used to clean the keyboard, which many of you have not cleaned for a long time and accumulating dirt and hair. So you know, if you need to remove the keys for later cleaning, you have many different options when choosing the tool to use.
Of course, if you are going to carry out this operation, make sure to take a photo prior to the keyboard to know the order of the keys and once you have used one of the key pullers to remove them, do not forget to put the key caps in a bag, fill it with soap and water and shake them inside it to clean the dirt. If you don’t have a bag then a pot can serve you.
Also take the opportunity to clean the rest of the keyboard with a spray of compressed air and a toothbrush, even if it is to replace the keys.
Wire key puller
They are the most traditional, they are based on two wires connected to a plastic handle, which allow to surround the key to easily pull them out of the keyboard. They are compatible with all types of keyboards and we recommend their use over plastic ring key pullers, since there is less danger of breaking something during extraction.
Its counterpart? We can produce scratches on the keys when removing them, so if you are one of the people who like to keep everything intact, we recommend that you handle it with care, although it is very difficult to scratch a key in this operation. In any case, it is not a difficult tool to use and you can even create a wire key puller from clips or wire if you are skilled.
Key puller in plastic ring
These types of tools to extract keys are more limited than those based on wire key pullers, since they are designed for a specific key size, so they are not suitable for extracting special keys that have a different shape than the standard one. .
How it works? We only have to grasp the key with the pins of the Ring Puller, place our finger on the ring and pull them to remove the key, but we have to be careful when pulling the plastic ring in some cases.
Bent steel key puller
These types of key pullers usually come standard with some keyboards from the Japanese brand Topre, as well as sets of replacement keys. They are not common at all, but if you have a keyboard that uses the switches of that brand, it is possible that you have one of these Key Pullers, since they usually come with them.
Its use has to be done with caution, since being made of metal it can scratch the keys and in the case of some keys a force greater than average is required to remove them. In any case, it is an extremely easy-to-use type of key puller. Think of them as tongs for picking up food.
Key Puller in H
H Key Pullers have two tips, one for normal keys and the other for larger keys. Some types of special key are made up of two different parts, which is the base of the key and the cap of the key. In these cases they usually come with a Key Puller in H where one end is used to extract the cap and the other the base of it.
To all this we must remember that the use of special Key Pullers is not normal today, but you can find yourself with keyboards of yesteryear, such as the IBM Model M that made use of special Key Pullers. Which IBM used to include standard on keyboard versions when purchased separately.
Keyboards with keys that need special key pullers are not usually made today. The reasons for this are simple and have to do with the difficulty and cost of manufacture. Since the use of special keys requires special machinery for their mass manufacture.
Flat blade screwdriver
No, we have not gone crazy, most of us have used a flat blade screwdriver to pry out the keys from the keyboard with a very simple method. It is only necessary to put the tip horizontally and force it up. For many the best option, not in vain, is the most famous and the one that has the most successful among the people.
In any case we warn you that it is not advisable to use a screwdriver to remove the keys if you have access to a key puller of another type, the problem is that many keyboards do not come with a key puller as standard. Which leads to the use of screwdrivers to pry out the keys on keyboards so they can be cleaned or replaced.