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Spotting scopes are usually made to last for years. You can use them for your outdoor activities and you won’t get any issues related to their build quality. But if they remain unchecked, and use carelessly, then spotting scopes start giving you issues.
When you use them in outdoor conditions, your spotting scopes come across dirt, debris, and other contaminants that start accumulating on the lenses. Over a period of time, this dust causes issues and you start getting foggy visuals through your spotting scopes.
This is why cleaning the spotting scopes is very important as it keeps your scopes safe from different contaminants. However, cleaning the scope without knowing the proper method can damage the lenses of your spotting scope. This is why I am going to write this guide which will guide you about how you can clean the spotting scopes lens. So, let’s get started.
Related Article: Can You Use a Rifle Scope as a Spotting Scope?
Why Does Your Spotting Scope Need Regular Cleaning?
Spotting scopes are mostly used for birdwatching, hunting, and nature viewing. However, over time, the lens of the scope can become dirty, affecting the quality of the image and reducing its effectiveness. As I said, scopes are used in outdoor conditions where dust makes contact with the spotting scope quite easily.
So, dust, dirt, and other debris usually start to accumulate on the lens of the spotting scope. This accumulated dirt and debris affect the quality of the visuals by making the lenses hazy or blurry. So, when you clean the lenses, then you start getting clear and sharper visuals.
Not to forget, the spotting scopes can also be exposed to rain, snow, and other elements. These conditions make the lens become foggy or cloudy. So if you use scope in such harsh environmental conditions, then you won’t be able to use the scope without cleaning the lenses.
Step By Step Process: How to Clean Spotting Scope Lens?
So, it is now established that the dust and debris present on the spotting scope must be cleaned to ensure that you get clear visuals. But cleaning the spotting scope is not an easy job because you will have to take care of the lenses as small mistakes can put scratches on the lenses.
Obviously, no one wants to put scratches on the lenses. This is why I am writing this guide to ensure that you clean your spotting scope in a way that your scope gets rid of dirt, debris, and other continents and remains safe from scratches, etc.
In case you own a riflescope, you should also read: How to Clean Rifle Scope Lens?
1- Give the spotting scope some air to blow off the dirt
Before cleaning the lens, it is important to blow off any loose dirt or debris. This will remove the dust present on the body, and the lenses of the scope. For this purpose, you can use a can of compressed air or simply blow on the lens.
Once the loose dirt has been removed, the next step is to remove any remaining dirt or debris. Look, your aim should be to clean all the dust from the body as well as the lenses of the spotting scope. If there remains any dust, then the cleaning process won’t be effective.
2- Use a brush to remove the suspended dirt
If there is any suspended dirt or debris on the lens, it can be removed by gently brushing it off. For this purpose, I suggest you use a soft-bristled brush and make sure to brush in a circular motion to avoid scratching the lens.
In fact, to remove any suspended dust particles, you can use the cleaning pen which will go inside the seals and remove the dirt, and suspended contaminants. Make sure to use the brush, and cleaning pen gently as if you use them harshly, they can scratch the lenses of your scope.
3- Applying Cleaning Solution and clean the lenses
After removing any dirt or debris, it is time to clean the lens. Apply a few drops of lens cleaning solution to a microfiber cloth and gently wipe the lens in a circular motion. If you don’t have a cleaning solution, then I highly recommend you buy it from any optics store as it is mandatory.
One thing that you should keep in mind is that you must use a microfiber cloth and never ever make the mistake of using any other cloth. When you use a cleaning cloth other than microfiber that cloth puts scratches on the lenses. This is why I highly recommend you use a microfiber cloth.
4- Wiping the Lens with Microfiber Cloth
So, when you have applied the cleaning solution on the lenses and other parts of the spotting time, it is time to remove the cleaning solution. You can wipe the cleaning solution with the help of a microfiber cloth.
Keep in mind that while rubbing or wiping the cleaning solution on the lens, go with a soft approach. Gently removing the cleaning solution won’t cause any sort of scratches. If you don’t wipe the cleaning solution from the lenses, then you will notice streaks or smudges.
5- Drying the Lens
After wiping off the excess cleaning solution, you must allow the lens to air dry for a few minutes. Make sure to keep the lens away from any dust or debris while it is drying. I suggest you keep the spotting scope in the open air and under the sunlight so the lenses of the scope get dried quickly. Once the lenses are dried, you can use them for your outdoor activities without any issues at all.
Common Mistakes to Avoid while Cleaning the Lenses of Spotting Scopes
I know cleaning the lenses is not easy – and if you’re a newbie, then you will feel a bit confused while completing the cleaning process. During my research, I found that people make some common mistakes which I don’t want you to repeat. This is why I am going to mention some of those common mistakes so that you can avoid them.
Also Read: How to Get Moisture Out of a Scope?
1- Using the Wrong Cleaning Tools
One of the biggest mistakes that people make is using the wrong cleaning tools. Actually, not everyone has a proper cleaning kit, so they end up using the tools available on their own which is not good practice.
Some people use paper towels, tissues, or other abrasive materials to clean their lenses, which usually scratches or damage the lens coating. I highly recommend you use a microfiber cloth, lens cleaning solution, and a blower brush to clean your spotting scope lens.
2- Using Too Much Pressure
Another mistake people make when cleaning their spotting scope lens is using too much pressure. Don’t put pressure and hold the spotting scopes gently. In fact, for cleaning, you should compress air so that you won’t have to rub the lenses harshly which can obviously affect the lenses’ quality.
3- Cleaning Too Frequently
Cleaning your spotting scope lens too frequently is not a good thing. You should clean your spotting once a month. However, if you want to keep the scope lenses cleaned, I suggest you use the lens cap which will protect your scope from dust, and debris. Cleaning frequently can cause scratches on the lenses.
Frequently Asked Questions
The best way to clean a spotting scope lens is by using a lens-cleaning solution and a microfiber cloth. You will be able to remove all the accumulated dust and debris easily.
Yes, you can do that if you have the proper cleaning tools that I have mentioned in this guide.
No, I don’t recommend you use alcohol for cleaning the spotting scope lenses. The reason is that the alcohol is usually very harsh and can cause damage to the lens coating or other parts of the scope.
No, I don’t suggest you use Windex or any other similar chemical to clean the lenses of the spotting scopes.
No, you should not use isopropyl alcohol as it can also cause the lenses to damage.
I’m a passionate outdoor activist who has got special love for optics. The school studies in optical mechanics and the travelling experience has made me an expert in optics like binoculars, scopes, and other devices. Stay connected with us for in-depth knowledge!