Properly cleaning your vintage receiver will keep their musical qualities longer. To listen to a dirty disc is very unpleasant; the dust and impurities lodged in the groove, hurting the quality of the reproduced sound. It is, therefore, essential to take care of his records. However, it is necessary to make sure precautions and use the tools and products adapted to avoid damaging your precious albums.
If there is no miracle cure to give a second life to a disc used micro sillon, many solutions exist to remove dirt and improve the sound of vinyl records. Here are some tips and tricks to clean your black cakes in the best possible way. If these are your first steps in vinyl, this list is a good starting point for maintenance.
- Use a carbon fiber brush to clean your albums before and after listening. This is the most effective way to keep your records clean and retain their original musical qualities.
- If you are looking for impeccable acoustic clarity, a semi-professional cleaning system is an investment.
- Use demineralized water.
- Always remove dirt on the surface and dust off your albums before the deep cleaning.
- Excellent maintenance kits allow you to combine all the accessories to clean the cell, the diamond, the disc with the specific brushes, and the appropriate liquids.
- A damaged disk will not be able to recover its original state.
- A new record is not necessarily clean. Remember to clean your albums before first listening.
- Handle your discs gently and avoid as much friction as possible with the surface. Do not put your fingers on the furrows.
- Immediately store the disc in its pocket after listening to it.
- Always use a soft, microfiber cloth.
- Platinum or diamond in lousy conditions may damage your vinyl albums.
- Almost all cleaning products leave traces, including alcohol solutions.
- The best methods are not necessarily the most complex and do not necessarily require the purchase of expensive products.
How to clean a vintage receiver?
When you hear a shrill noise while the volume of the old audio system goes up? A dirty potentiometer most likely causes the problem. A dirty potentiometer can cause issues in the size, tone, and any other number of buttons on a piece of equipment stereo. But do not fear, there is usually a quick and easy way to remedy this problem.
Things you will need
- Contact spray cleaner
- I was cleaning the knob.
- Turn off the device to your stereo and pull out the dirty knob lid.
The contact of the spray cleaning sprays on the potentiometer shaft. Turn off the stereo again and turn the knob back and forth across its entire range. This can clean the potentiometer, but if it still makes a loud noise, continue with step 3.
- Remove the potentiometer from its housing and the aerosol at the bottom (base) of the potentiometer. Turn the knob.
- Turn on the audio system and listen for noise while turning the knob. If the problem persists, it may be easier to remove the knob and solder in a replacement (step 5).
- Draw a wiring diagram to take a picture of how the part is connected before cutting the cables attached to it. Take control of an electronics store and find a spare part with the same resistance as the original part. The strength is indicated by a number that can be found on the back of the potentiometer.
- Using welding and a welding gun, attach the two (or three) wires to the potentiometer.
How to handle your discs?
Take care of your discs as soon as they are purchased, this will make cleaning more comfortable, and you will maintain optimal sound quality for years. The golden rule is not to touch the groove running through the interior of the vinyl. The sweat, the grease, the various dust and particles that are on the fingers have a detrimental effect on the discs over time. It is generally advisable to handle a two-handed disc, holding it by the edges without touching the furrow. This is the basic rule.
Prepare a vinyl record for listening.
Ideally, it is best to clean each disc before placing it on the deck but also before storing it. This prevents dust and other dirt from becoming embedded. A light brushing of the surface with a carbon fiber brush is enough. If you do not have a brush, soft cloth can do the trick, provided it does not contain fluff. Spread it lightly over the surface of the disc following the furrows. It is essential not to have your hand too heavy when cleaning to avoid damaging the surface of the drive.
For deep cleaning, there are inexpensive and straightforward methods. Note that new vinyl is coated with a non-stick product that must be removed for optimal sound, so it is essential to think about cleaning them before first listening.
Even cleaning a damaged disc as best as you can, it will not be possible to restore it to its original state. The good news is that a small scratch or visible scratch does not necessarily imply that your drive will skip during playback. You will still be able to listen to your album, but the sound quality will not be optimal. In case of deeper scratch (if you can feel it by passing your finger), the surface is then altered and irreparable, so you will have to wait for your disk to jump …
The condition of the cell can impact the wear of vinyl records. Make sure the diamond (part of the battery in contact with the furrow) stays clean. Since this small point runs through the rut during reading, it may accumulate dust as well as short fibers. Check that the diamond is pure before playing an album. If this is not the case, blow it lightly to remove dirt or use a specific brush. A diamond has a limited life (usually greater than or equal to 1000 hours), so it is necessary to replace it regularly.
How to clean your vinyl records
From a purely objective point of view, a cleaning device remains the most effective method of taking care of your LPs. Even if you do not want to buy such a machine, understanding how it works will help you better maintain your records. This type of device is essential for extensive collections, such as those found in significant discotheques, composed of several thousand discs. You can do without such a device if your selection is not extremely extensive.
The procedure is always the same, whether you’re using a device or taking care of your disks by hand. Before each deep cleaning, remove as much dirt and particles from the surface as possible. If this is not done, these residues may get stuck in the grooves, which will make cleaning more difficult and may also damage them. It is these microscopic particles lodged in the furrows that are generally responsible for crackling and various parasitic noises. If you observe the enlargement of the surface of a disc, you will find that these particles can quickly get stuck in the grooves.
So only after removing the particles from the surface of the disc can you carry out thorough cleaning. Use a soft brush or cloth for this first step. Be careful not to have your hand too heavy. Once the surface particles are removed, you can then place your album in the cleaning device. There are several models of cleaning devices available on the market, and all use a suction system to dislodge dirt that is in the grooves, which results in minimal friction. There is, therefore, no risk of causing particles on the surface of the vinyl.
At first, a thin layer of the product is applied using a brush. This solution has the function of dissolving the oils and protecting the disc during the next phase. The suction system then removes the impurities in the grooves and the product remaining on the surface. Some cleaning devices are also equipped with a rotation system. This system uses centrifugal force to dry the disc and thus ensures a perfectly homogeneous cleaning. These devices are generally perceived as the ultimate in maintenance and provide deep cleaning with minimal friction.
Safe and inexpensive, the risk of damaging your albums is almost non-existent with this method. Specific cleaning kits are usually the best solution, as even the best soaps tend to leave marks (try to go as far as possible).
However, specific cleaning products can be replaced with dishwashing liquid, although this is not the ideal solution.
For this method, you will need:
- dishwashing liquid or a specific cleaning product
- a bowl
- pure warm water (distilled, demineralized and de-ionized if possible)
- a soft cloth
- a carbon fiber brush or a soft cloth
Step 1: Remove the dust
As mentioned earlier, it is essential to remove as much dirt and particles from the surface as possible before the deep cleaning. A light brush stroke carbon fiber will do the trick. Carbon fiber also helps eliminate any static electricity charge that can lead to adhesion of dust particles to your disc. If you do not have a carbon fiber brush, try to find fabric to clean the glasses or laptop screens and pass it lightly over the surface of the disc in a circular motion, following the furrow.
Step 2: Prepare the cleaning product.
For filthy discs, simply mix a little dishwashing liquid with water. All soaps, as well as most alcohol solutions, leave traces. This is why it is better to settle for demineralized water. While some people suggest using boiling water to remove all dirt more easily, heat can damage the discs. No reason to take the risk of damaging your precious black patties, just make sure that the water is warm enough so that the dishwashing liquid can dissolve easily. Use the minimum possible product, the idea being not to use at all.
Step 3: Clean the drive
Use a soft, absorbent fabric. Do not use a rag or an old T-shirt. Cloths to polish cars are just beautiful. They are cheap, can be reused, and are available in any automotive accessories department. Wrap the fabric around your index finger and dip it briefly into the bowl of warm water. Make sure your material is not waterlogged to leave any marks on the surface; it will also make it easier to dry. Then gently wipe the rag on your album clockwise, from the center out, then back from the edge to get closer to the label. Do a uniform cleaning, and do not use your nails.
Step 4: Rinse
Pass the fabric again, only with distilled water, to remove all traces of soap. Keep in mind that regular maintenance is the best way to keep your records in good condition.
If you have an extensive collection with a large number of disks to maintain, it is wise to think about buying a cleaning device. For a smaller collection, the purchase of a cleaning kit is a minimal investment and helps preserve your valuable albums and extend their life.
How to store your albums
Cleaning your disks is an essential part of the overall maintenance of your collection, but it is also necessary to store them properly. Place your albums vertically and keep them in a cool, dry place. Avoid laying them flat or stacking them on top of each other. This could cause the deformation of your discs over time. It’s important to let your albums breathe and not press them against each other. It is also strongly recommended to use plastic pouches to store your vinyl.