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How to Clean Binoculars

Last Updated: 29.11.21


If you enjoy birdwatching or hunting, investing in the best Bushnell binoculars on the market is probably the wisest decision you could take. Moreover, if you want to get your hands on high-quality binoculars distributed by other manufacturers, check out our recent post as you will surely find options that suit your needs.

Preparations are in order

Before you get started, fellow binoculars users note that it is essential that you read the instructions made available by the manufacturer. So, take the time to read the owner’s manual. In it, you will probably find info regarding how the device has to be cleaned.

On top of that, some experts also provide their buyers with info on what substances one has to utilize during the actual cleaning process. The tips and tricks provided by the sellers are important because they can make you aware of the cleaning agents that might cause damage to the optical surfaces of the device.


Cleaning the lenses

When cleaning the lenses of the binoculars it is best that you avoid rubbing the optical surfaces as much as possible. To start, the experts argue that you should first remove the dust and debris particles from the lenses.

To get the job done, you can use your own breath. Still, because of moisture, this might lead to the particles getting stuck on the optical surfaces. To avoid this, it is highly recommended that one uses a lens blower.

If you do not own a device of this kind, you can easily acquire one online. Fellow binoculars users also say that a brush with fine hairs might also be the right choice for the job.

Finally, you can clean the lenses with a bit of warm water and a cloth in order to remove the remaining dust particles. Under no circumstances should you use eyeglass and household cleaning solutions to clean the glass part of the binoculars, as this might damage the protective coatings that they feature.

Removing the remaining dirt

If you have not managed to remove all the dirt from the lenses, it is time to carry out the last step of the process. To remove the dirt, you should use a soft, lint-free cloth or a quality microfiber that was designed to be utilized when cleaning binoculars.

Before you rub the lenses, make sure that the cloth is clean. After you are done using the cloth, clean it thoroughly and place it in a sealed plastic bag so that it remains dust-free.


Using a cleaning kit

If you feel like you do not own the necessary accessories that can help you get optical surfaces cleaned, you can always invest in a special kit that was created to be used for this purpose.

Because each kit comes with the necessary products and with much-needed instructions, chances are that you won’t find the entire process too challenging.

Cleaning the body of the binoculars

Once you are done cleaning the lenses, it is time to focus your attention on cleaning the body of the device. Once again, you have to start by using a blower to remove any debris from it. Next, use a lint-free cloth and wipe all the parts of the model, including the focusing mechanism, the barrels, and the eyepieces.

During the entire process, you have to be careful and to avoid touching or wiping the lenses. To do so, some recommend that you hold the binoculars upside down.

Lastly, if there are still traces of dirt on the outer rubber, plastic or metal parts of the body, it is time to use warm water and a cloth and to remove them. During this step, you can use a mild detergent.


Cleaning the inside of the binoculars

In some rare cases, there is a chance that there is dust or debris accumulated inside the binoculars. When this happens, it is vital that you refrain from the impulse of taking the binoculars apart.

Most models, especially the more expensive ones, have their inside filled with a special gas that prevents the model from fogging. When you open it, the gas is immediately lost.

Given the situation, most experts recommend that in case the inside of a binocular needs to be cleaned, you contact the manufacturer or an authorized dealer. This way, you can find reliable information regarding what you can do.


What tools you should not use

Before you start cleaning a device of this type, it is critical that you understand that there are some cleaning tools that should not be utilized. For instance, you should not use handkerchiefs, Kleenex and paper towels as well as the tail of the sleeve of your shirt.

Plus, stay away from household cleaners and from canned or compressed air cleaners. Instead, invest in a quality Isopropyl-based lens cleaner. It goes without saying that detergents and dish soap cleaners should also be avoided.

Additional tips and tricks

If you are one of those people that displays OCD tendencies, you should not clean your binoculars too often, as this will lead to them getting damaged. From this point of view, less cleaning is definitely more.

Moreover, using cleaning agents that were not approved to be used to clean an optical device such as binoculars is highly discouraged. According to statistics, more binoculars are damaged annually due to improper cleaning techniques rather than because of people dropping them.

Whenever you are using a liquid solution to clean the lenses, the specialists say that you should not apply it directly onto the lenses as this might damage its coatings. Instead, spray it on the cloth that you are using.

If you notice that there is fungus inside the lens of the device, it is vital that you contact the manufacturer and ask for specialized help. Once again, cleaning the inside of the device by yourself is not recommended as this might invalidate/void the warranty policy that covers the unit.

If the product is no longer covered by a warranty, you can try to clean it by yourself. Still, if you are not technically inclined, it is best that you contact a local shop and that you have the device taken care of by a specialist. By doing so, you can rest assured knowing that it will still function properly.



If you do not want to end up with a pair of binoculars that can no longer be utilized due to improper maintenance, there are a couple of steps that you should follow. To start, you should always store the model in a place with low humidity where ventilation is not an issue.

Besides, the device should be kept clean and free of dust. You should not use compressed dust blowers when cleaning the unit. Also, you should avoid touching the lenses of the model as often as possible.

All experts remark that the binoculars should only be cleaned in accordance with the instructions and the recommendations made by the manufacturer.

If you care about your binoculars, keeping them clean is the way to go. This way, you can be sure that you will be able to utilize them for years to come without them getting damaged in any way!



Ioana Moldovan

Ioana’s professional experience in the optics field has helped her understand the value of passing her knowledge forward. Her curious personality helps her gather useful information for her readers and her goal is to make technical information fun and accessible to everyone.

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