How to clean your binocular optics?

31 Jul 2022

It is best not to clean your binocular optics. If there is only dust, cleaning is best done with a bicycle pump or compressed air with the air tube running at a moderate angle to the lens. Let’s find out more!

Now, what is strictly prohibited is blowing into the lens. This will remove larger particles of dust, but will leave behind microscopic water droplets that can only be removed by wiping. A little dust on the eyepiece and lens will not affect the image quality at all.

If cleaning is still necessary, you can also use better quality dishwashing detergent, but never abrasive agents and liquids for cleaning windows and glass.

The recipe says:

Take a soft cotton cloth and soak it in a mixture of quality distilled water with as little addition of a good detergent – just a few drops. Of course, you mixed it all well in a small and clean container. The cloth must not be too wet because the liquid can get into the eyepieces.

Avoid strong wiping, as this peels the optics and removes the anti-reflective layer, if any. By doing so, you can only worsen the condition of the optics – forever. There are also special liquids for cleaning optics coated with fine, anti-reflective layers.

These are the so-called “coated” and “multicoated” lenses that require more attention when cleaning them. It is best to clean with light circular strokes around the center of the lens or mirror, depending on what you are cleaning.

The cleaning procedure can be performed with alcohol or even acetone. If you use acetone, make sure that it does not come into contact with the plastic parts, as it will damage them.

You can also use medical benzine with cotton wool wrapped around a longer stick. The downside is that colorful traces of gasoline often remain, and you can wipe them off with the finest cotton or leather cloth. Those colorful traces have no influence on the quality of the picture.

It is also not a bad idea to get thin surgical gloves at the pharmacy, because it can happen that you accidentally leave your fingerprint where you don’t want it, and then you need to repeat the procedures mentioned above.