How To Power Wash A Chromebook: Electronic Cleaning Caution

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Modern computers are increasingly intricate, yet when it comes to effective troubleshooting, few tips surpass the efficacy of resetting your device. If your Chromebook is malfunctioning or if you wish to wipe all data, the recommended approach is to utilize the Powerwash feature.

Powerwash performs a factory reset on the Chromebook, erasing all its contents. Upon completion, your Chromebook will essentially be in a state similar to when it first left the warehouse.

Keep reading to find out how to use Powerwash on your Chromebook.

How To Use Powerwash On A Chromebook

Keep in mind that employing Powerwash will result in the deletion of all content on your device, including apps and files. If possible, ensure to create a backup of your data before utilizing Powerwash. Rest assured, data stored in your Google account, such as passwords or files in Google Drive, will remain unaffected.

There are two ways to do a powerwash. The first:

  • Hit the time in the bottom-right corner of your screen to open the quick settings menu.
  • Click the gear icon near the top-right corner of this menu to open your device’s full settings menu.
  • In the left sidebar, click Advanced to reveal more options, and then click Reset settings.
  • You’ll see a Powerwash option. Click Reset, and then Restart in the pop-up that appears.
  • Your Chromebook will restart automatically. Once it turns back on, your lock screen will be replaced by a screen labeled Reset this Chromebook.
  • Click Powerwash in the bottom-right corner, and then click Continue.

READ ALSO: How to Screen Record on Chromebook: Digital Recording Technique

How To Reset Chromebook From The Login Screen

Instead of initiating the Powerwash process via Chrome’s Settings interface, you also have the option to reset your Chromebook directly from the login screen by following these steps.

  1. While on the Chrome OS login screen and before logging in, press the keyboard shortcut Shift+Ctrl+Alt+R. This action will prompt a window titled “Reset this Chrome device” to appear. Click Restart to initiate the process.
  2. Your Chromebook will then restart. Upon returning to the login screen, a revised version of the window will be visible. Click Powerwash. It is recommended to mark the checkbox next to “Update firmware for added security” for enhanced device security before proceeding with the Powerwash.
  3. The Confirm Powerwash dialog will now appear. Click Continue.
  4. Once complete, you can sign in with your Google Account and follow the on-screen prompts to set up your newly restored Chromebook. 

SEE ALSO: How to Remove Reading List from Chrome

What You Should Know Before You Powerwash a Chromebook

  • While the majority of Chrome OS files and personalized settings are stored in the cloud, linked to your Google Account, or situated in a server-side Google Drive repository, certain locally stored items are permanently erased through the Powerwash function.
  • Files saved on the local hard drive of your Chromebook are typically found in the Downloads folder. It is advisable to consistently back up the contents of this folder to an external device or your Google Drive before performing a Powerwash.
  • All Google Accounts previously used on your Chromebook are removed during a Powerwash, as well as any settings associated with said accounts. As long as you have the respective usernames and passwords stored elsewhere beforehand, these accounts can be restored on your Chromebook at a later time.

FAQs On How To Power Wash A Chromebook

Can you Powerwash a managed Chromebook?

If you have a school or otherwise managed Chromebook, you should ask for permission before Powerwashing the device. School-owned or business Chromebooks are often configured to re-enroll in the manager’s domain when they boot back up and then connect to Wi-Fi after the Powerwash process. 

How do you perform a hard reset on a Chromebook?

Turn off the Chromebook. While pressing and holding Refresh, continually press Power until the Chromebook starts back up. Release Refresh to complete the hard reset. 

How do you powerwash a Chromebook refresh?

Use the steps below to reset the device. Press ‘esc + refresh key + power button’ all at once. The power button may be located on the side of the Chromebook, or above the keyboard on its own.


After power washing, your Chromebook transforms into a safe, powerful cleaning device when you click Restart. There won’t be anything on the gadget. It won’t affect anything on your Google Drive or other online services, which is fantastic news. On your Chromebook, however, everything locally stored will be permanently lost.


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