No, You Shouldn't Blow On A Camera Lens To Clean It

When our camera lenses get dusty, we naturally want to blow on them. This method is not only ineffective, but it's actually bad for the lens because your breath contains acidic elements that can cause damage. DIY Photography posts a reply from Nikon support that explains what you should do instead.

Photo by TungCheung (Shutterstock)

The best way to clean a lens is to use a piece of lint free lens cleaning tissue and a small amount of Lens Cleaning solution. Do not use anything containing abrasives or solvents, only use Lens Cleaning Solution.

First we recommend taking a small blower brush to blow off or brush away loose dust or debris.

Next, place a drop or two of cleaner on the tissue (never directly onto the lens) and then wipe the lens in a circular motion, beginning in the centre and working your way outward, removing any marks or smear.

If the above supplies are not available a clean, dry, soft, lint free cloth can be used to clean the lens. Do not breathe on the lens to fog it for cleaning. There are harmful acids in breath that can damage lens coatings. Just use the blower bulb, then brush, and wipe the lens in a circular spiral from the centre outward.

The same method can be used to clean the viewfinder eyepiece of Nikon cameras.

You may want to immediately remove dust particles on your lens, but it's better to let them sit than to try and blow them away. Instead, just wait until you've got the eight minutes required for a proper cleaning. Your lens will thank you for it.

Should You Blow On Your Lens to Clean It? [DIY Photography]


    I'd be thinking there should be considerable emphasis on the use of a brush/blower bulb first, otherwise any dust on the lens will get on your cloth and turn it into sand paper even if you have trouble seeing it with the naked eye, ie. you'll end up with micro scratches if you wipe that cloth around the lens with dust on it. In any case, anyone with even half decent glass should invest in a high quality lens protect filter so the worst case is the replacement of the lens protector. No dirt should ever get onto your lens.

    Last edited 17/12/12 9:16 pm

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