Owning an SLR camera gives you the opportunity and the tool to click some stunning photographs, but you also need to maintain your camera properly and clean it from time to time so that the quality of the images that you click does not suffer. People who use their cameras outdoors a lot will soon find that their picture quality is dropping, and this happens because of dust, grime and other particles that get attached to the sensor of the camera itself. Cleaning your SLR camera is something that you should undertake at least once a month, and if you are an outdoors person, then the frequency of this process should be even greater.
How to Clean Your Digital SLR Camera
SLR stands for Single Lens Reflex, and this is a technology that manipulates the light around the subject so as to give a crisper and clearer image from the camera. Without going into the technicalities of the way this technology functions, it should suffice to say that cleaning the body and the lens of the camera is imperative to continue getting high quality images from the SLR camera that you own. When it comes to maintaining SLR cameras, it is always better to prevent dirt from touching the camera rather than cleaning it later. All camera stores have a lens filter that they sell, and this will protect your cameras lens when it is not being used.
Additionally, the bodies of most SLR cameras soon get smudged with fingerprints so it is advisable to wipe the body once every few days. Even though fingerprints on the body of the camera do not affect the quality of the images that you click, doing so will grant you peace of mind that your camera is actually quite clean. You can either rub the body gently with a soft piece of cloth, and you can even use a canned air duster to clean all the gaps and crevices in the body. Now, the most important part of your SLR camera is the sensor of the camera, and this is the part that needs to be cleaned with precision and care. A clean sensor will absolutely improve the quality of the images that you click.
Cleaning the Sensor and the Lens
The sensor itself is actually quite sensitive, so only someone with a very steady hand should attempt to clean it. What you can do instead, is clean the low pass filter that is located in front of the sensor, in order to get the same results. The best way to do this is to either use methanol, or a liquid that comes as a part of any camera cleaning kit that is easily available in the market. You need to wet a small piece of cloth, or cotton, with the liquid and then slightly swab the filter. In order to locate the filter on your SLR camera you should refer to the handbook and instruction manual that came along with it.
These kits also provide a sensor brush that can be used to lightly dust off the sensor itself, and they also provide in depth instructions on cleaning an SLR camera. As already mentioned, this needs to be done very carefully and with a steady hand, or the sensor can get displaced and ruin the camera completely. Cleaning the lens is also advisable in this situation as this will also lead to better images, and this is even more essential for someone who changes their lenses a lot. Removing a lens and reattaching it leads to the lens mount gathering dust, and this area also needs to be cleaned gently with a microfiber cloth. Both sides of the glass of the lens should be dusted, and this can be achieved with the help of an air blower and the cloth. Remember that the air blower should never be used, and you should never touch the mirror that is located near the sensor as well. Some new SLR models have an automatic sensor cleaning technology, and for these cameras you simply need to work on the body and the lens of the camera.
In order to avoid cleaning your camera too often, always keep it in vacuum bag and clean the body and lens as often as possible, especially if you are clicking images outdoors a lot. Use the lens cap when the camera is not being used, and if you are changing the lenses, do so quickly. Additionally, if you feel that your images are drastically suffering due to dirt and dust, then give your camera to a professional camera store and pay them to clean your SLR effectively.