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« MusicThinkTank Weekly Recap: Vinyl | Main | Tips For First-Time Instrument And Audio Equipment Buyers »
Friday
Jun292018

How To Clean Vinyl Records

Ever play a vinyl record and listen to the clicks and pops an old record makes? All those sounds can be prevented by simply keeping your records free of dirt and debris. The better you care for your records, the longer they will remain quiet, all you hear is the music on the record. Using a record cleaning machine is the best way to clean a record, but these devices are often expensive. There are plenty of cheap alternatives that will ultimately complete the job much faster and with the same quality as using a cleaning machine.

What to Avoid

Vinyl records cannot be cleaned the same way as CDs or DVDs. You should use caution when cleaning as you could risk damage to the record. Never clean a vinyl record with rubbing alcohol. Pure alcohol will strip away the coating that rests on the grooves walls and floor of the record. Never rinse vinyl under running water as this will damage the already fragile label. Avoiding damage is the first defense to protecting your vinyl records and ensuring they last long after you owned them. Never touch a record with your bare hands. When handling a record, always hold a record with the tips of your fingers on the edge of the vinyl. The oils from your skin can cause excess dust to stick to the record as well as scratch the vinyl making it malfunction or skip when playing your favorite music. No one wants that to happen.

How to Clean Your Vinyl Records

Cleaning your vinyl records without causing damage is incredibly important to ensuring and extending the life of them. Therefore, you should always do the proper research before trying out a particular cleaning method. Using the wrong cloths can damage the record beyond repair. Vintage records in the right hands can sound as good as they did when they were first released. Taking care of your records should be your top priority. This ensures that you will avoid having to replace your priceless favorites which can often be extremely expensive or even impossible in some cases. These methods will ensure you give the records the care they deserve.

Microfiber Cloth

One safe and effective method is to use a microfiber cloth that is dry and wipes away dust and debris gently from your records. These types of clothes attack dust and absorb oils ensuring your records will sound as good as they did the day they were released. These clothes work because they are ultra-soft and attract dust using static. Using the cloth while dry is the best and most effective way to clean your record. Never apply any liquid to your vinyl’s. There are assorted styles of microfiber cloths. The best one, however, is the fur like cloth that is ultra-plush because it picks up dirt and debris best. This is a cheap way to clean records yourself without expensive devices. Who doesn’t like cheap, or even free?

Anti-Static Record Cleaning Brush

Another tried and true method for cleaning vinyl records is to invest in an anti-static record cleaning brush. This method has a much better chance of removing dirt and debris without causing damage to the vinyl. This brush tends to cost more than a microfiber cloth, but works just as well, maybe better in some extreme cases. You can purchase this cleaning brush online or at your local music store. It is fairly priced and tends to last a bit longer than a microfiber cloth when used and stored properly.

Milty Zerostat 3

This device will use static electricity to remove dust without having to touch the vinyl record. If you can’t avoid damage by using this device hey you can’t avoid it at all. This gun-like device can be quite expensive but is a hands-free way to clean your record without risking damage to your precious vintage vinyl. This device can be found at any of your local music stores or online retailers at various prices but tends to be a lot more expensive than other methods used for cleaning. This device, however, is much safer for your vinyl than any other method. This is a guaranteed way to clean your vinyl and not cause damage.

It is extremely important to keep your vinyl records clean not only so they perform better but because they can often be extremely expensive to replace. Properly cleaning your records can feel like a tedious and even somewhat nerve-racking task that might seem a bit intimidating especially if it is related to a rare vinyl record. When in doubt always consult a professional for advice. When done carefully, you can successfully clean your records yourself, saving both time and money. Nothing beats the sound of a classic hit from a vintage vinyl record. It’s as close as you can get to going back in time.

About me: I’m a blogger and an avid admirer of music, running wisepick.org.

How To Clean Vinyl Records

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