Letters wearing off laptop keyboard
Kim, the keyboard lettering on my laptop is wearing off after six months of use. This has happened with many of the new laptops that I have worked on. What can I do to delay the letters' rubbing off? Are those skin membranes better than applying stickers to each key? Or is there a replacement kit for key buttons that have lettering that will last longer?
This poses a bigger problem with laptops than with desktop computers. With a desktop computer, you can simply buy a new keyboard. But you can't change your laptop's keyboard easily.
I would be interested to know if you are purchasing the same brand of laptop. This might explain why the letters are wearing off. Or maybe the oils in your skin are interacting with the paint on the keys. You could also be pressing the keys exceptionally hard.
My first suggestion is to contact the laptop's manufacturer. The keyboard may be covered under the warranty. So the manufacturer should replace it. This is the best solution.
However, this won't prevent problems with the lettering coming off in the future. So you'll need to take steps to protect the keyboard.
You asked about replacing the laptop keys. I would recommend strongly against trying to replace individual keys.
Why? The mechanism used to attach keys to keyboards can be complex. It isn't as simple as prying off a key and snapping on a new one. You could end up with a useless keyboard.
However, if the manufacturer won't replace the keyboard, you could buy a new one. This could be expensive and installation could be tricky. Also, you have no guarantee how long the lettering will last. But it would solve your problems for a while, anyway.
The other two ideas both have their flaws. But they're the only other solutions I can see. So it is probably a matter of preference when it comes to which is best.
There are several sites that sell keyboard covers for laptops: ProtecT, CompuCover, and Viziflex. These fit over the keyboard. The covers are really designed to protect the laptop from spills.
But a cover could slow your typing a bit. That is, until you get used to it.
Worse, a cover could trap heat inside the computer. This can damage its components. At least some of the covers attach to the computer with an adhesive. So they're not easy to remove.
If you use a cover, make sure the laptop's vents are clear.
A number of sites sell stickers for keyboards. But most are unsuitable for laptops or are in a foreign alphabet. However, I was able to find two sites that sell stickers that will work for you:
Viziflex and Language-Keyboard.
Again, this might not be ideal. The stickers might slip off. Or, the adhesive might make the keys sticky.
I'd just replace the keyboard. And wash your hands before you use it. It could be the chemistry of your skin or hand lotion that is causing the problem.