How long does a mechanical keyboard last

Last Updated: Jan 29, 2024 by

Mechanical keyboards have become increasingly popular in recent years, with many people opting for them over traditional membrane keyboards. But with their higher price tag, many people wonder if they are worth the investment. One of the most common questions asked is, “How long does a mechanical keyboard last?” In this article, we will explore the lifespan of mechanical keyboards and factors that can affect their longevity.

What is a Mechanical Keyboard?

Before we dive into the lifespan of mechanical keyboards, let’s first define what they are. A mechanical keyboard is a type of keyboard that uses individual mechanical switches for each key, rather than a single rubber membrane. These switches are typically made of plastic and metal components and provide a tactile and audible feedback when pressed.

Mechanical keyboards are known for their durability, customizable options, and overall better typing experience. They are often preferred by gamers, programmers, and writers due to their responsiveness and accuracy.

Types of Mechanical Switches

Mechanical keyboard switches

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There are several types of mechanical switches, each with its own unique characteristics. The most common types are Cherry MX switches, which come in different colors, each representing a different type of switch. For example, Cherry MX Red switches are linear and require less force to press, while Cherry MX Blue switches are tactile and clicky.

Other popular types of switches include Gateron, Kailh, and Topre switches. Each type has its own feel and sound, allowing users to choose the one that best suits their preferences.

The Lifespan of a Mechanical Keyboard

The lifespan of a mechanical keyboard can vary depending on several factors, including usage, build quality, and maintenance. On average, a mechanical keyboard can last anywhere from 5 to 10 years, with some lasting even longer.


The amount of usage a mechanical keyboard receives can greatly affect its lifespan. If you are a heavy typist or gamer, your keyboard will likely wear out faster than someone who only uses it occasionally. The more you use your keyboard, the more wear and tear it will experience, especially on the switches.

Build Quality

Mechanical keyboard build quality

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The build quality of a mechanical keyboard can also play a significant role in its lifespan. Cheaper, lower-quality keyboards may not last as long as higher-end, more durable ones. This is because the materials used and the manufacturing process can greatly impact the keyboard’s durability.

When purchasing a mechanical keyboard, it is essential to research the brand and read reviews to ensure you are getting a high-quality product that will last.


Proper maintenance can also extend the lifespan of a mechanical keyboard. Regularly cleaning your keyboard can prevent dust and debris from building up and causing damage to the switches. Additionally, using a keyboard cover can protect it from spills and other accidents that can cause damage.

Factors That Can Affect a Mechanical Keyboard’s Lifespan

While the average lifespan of a mechanical keyboard is 5 to 10 years, there are several factors that can affect this timeframe.

Switch Type

As mentioned earlier, there are different types of mechanical switches, each with its own characteristics. Some switches, such as Cherry MX Blues, are known for their loud clicking sound, which can be satisfying for some users but can also cause the switch to wear out faster. Linear switches, on the other hand, have a smoother keystroke and may last longer.

Keycap Material

Mechanical keyboard keycaps

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The material of the keycaps can also impact the lifespan of a mechanical keyboard. Keycaps made of ABS plastic are more prone to wear and shine over time, while PBT keycaps are more durable and resistant to wear. Additionally, some keycaps are double-shot, meaning the legends are molded into the keycap, making them more durable and less likely to fade over time.

Usage Environment

The environment in which a mechanical keyboard is used can also affect its lifespan. For example, if you live in a humid climate, the moisture in the air can cause the switches to rust and wear out faster. Similarly, if you frequently eat or drink near your keyboard, spills and crumbs can damage the switches and other components.

Extending the Lifespan of Your Mechanical Keyboard

While the lifespan of a mechanical keyboard is ultimately determined by several factors, there are steps you can take to extend its longevity.

Regular Cleaning

Cleaning a mechanical keyboard

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As mentioned earlier, regular cleaning can prevent dust and debris from building up and causing damage to your keyboard. To clean your mechanical keyboard, you can use compressed air to blow out any dust and debris from between the keys. You can also use a keycap puller to remove the keycaps and clean them separately.


Lubricating your switches can also help extend the lifespan of your mechanical keyboard. Over time, the lubricant on the switches can wear off, causing them to feel scratchy and less responsive. By regularly lubricating your switches, you can keep them feeling smooth and extend their lifespan.

Proper Usage

Using your mechanical keyboard properly can also help extend its lifespan. Avoid slamming the keys or using excessive force when typing, as this can cause unnecessary wear and tear on the switches. Additionally, avoid eating or drinking near your keyboard to prevent spills and crumbs from damaging the switches.

When to Replace Your Mechanical Keyboard

Replacing a mechanical keyboard

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While mechanical keyboards are known for their durability, there will come a time when you need to replace yours. Signs that it may be time for a new keyboard include:

  • Keys becoming unresponsive or sticking
  • Loud or unusual noises when typing
  • Keys feeling scratchy or inconsistent
  • Visible wear and tear on the keycaps or switches

If you notice any of these signs, it may be time to invest in a new mechanical keyboard.


In conclusion, the lifespan of a mechanical keyboard can vary depending on several factors, including usage, build quality, and maintenance. On average, a mechanical keyboard can last anywhere from 5 to 10 years, with some lasting even longer. By properly maintaining your keyboard and using it correctly, you can extend its lifespan and get the most out of your investment.

Hamza Sarfraz

About the Author: Hamza Sarfraz

Hamza Sarfraz is a seasoned SEO and digital marketing expert based in Pakistan with 4 years of experience. Specializing in technology and health, he has a knack for simplifying complex topics into compelling narratives. Leveraging deep SEO insights, Hamza consistently delivers high-quality content that resonates with audiences and adds value to businesses. Discover more about him on his LinkedIn profile.

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