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How many years does a mechanical keyboard last?

Mechanical keyboards aren’t cheap, so knowing how long they should last is nice.

Nuphy nutype mechanical keyboard
Image: Kevin Raposo / KnowTechie

You’ve finally decided to spend some cash on an expensive mechanical keyboard. Regardless of whether you bought a well-known brand or a lesser-known one, you’re probably hoping that investment will last you for some time.

I mean, it should, right? Most expensive hardware comes with an expectation of build quality, and keyboards are no different. You’d hope that it will last longer than the membrane keyboard that came with your computer, or that laptop keyboard with the stuck keys, but will it?

With modern life shifting to work from home as the norm, and gaming as one of the only safe leisure pursuits, just how long will your mechanical keyboard last under increased use?

So, how many years should your expensive mechanical keyboard expect to last?

Short answer: This really depends on which keyboard you have, but you can expect the key switches on your mechanical keyboard to last for 10 to 15 years

If you’ve got a keyboard using Cherry MX key switches, those are rated to 50 million key presses, which averages out at 10 to 15 years under heavy typing or gaming. That’s a long time, but key switches from Kailh, Razer, and Logitech can all be rated at up to 80 million key presses, increasing that fail time to 20 years or more.

You can also replace the switches on mechanical keyboards when they do fail, further extending the lifespan of the keyboard. Compare that to your average rubber dome keyboard which is rated to 5 million key presses, or one to two years of heavy use, and you can start to see why mechanical keyboards are more expensive.

READ MORE: Best ways to clean a mechanical keyboard

That’s only one part of the equation though. The rest of the keyboard is just as important to ensure a long lifetime of being clack happy. Keyboards in metal cases will likely last longer than those in plastic ones, as plastics tend to weaken over time. The cable is another common point of failure, so if you want your keyboard to last a long time, make sure the one you buy comes with a removable cable. That way, if the cable gets damaged it’s a simple fix of just buying another cable, not a whole keyboard.

Even cheap mechanical keyboards should last as long as their warranty period though, so don’t worry too much about longevity. Just get the board you like the look of, at the price you feel you can afford.

What do you think? Surprised by how long mechanical keyboard switches last? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek with nearly half a decade of blogging experience. If it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't), Joe probably has one around his office somewhere. His hobbies include photography, animation, and hoarding Reddit gold.

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