How To Clean Binoculars : Step-by-Step!

How To Clean Binoculars

In this post I'd like to share some useful tips on how to clean binoculars. Keeping your optics & its parts clean will help them last longer and they'll make you happy when you're looking through them. On the plus side, it's a lot simpler than you think.

Binoculars can be quite a tedious thing to clean properly, especially if you want to avoid scratching the lenses or want to keep your best binoculars for hunting or All terrain binoculars at its best level. Now you may be wondering what it would effect, having a scratched lens, but it dramatically effects what the viewer sees when they look through the binoculars. The lenses have a certain way of transferring light, and when there is a scratch on the lens it makes an inclusion in the lens which does not throw the light properly, thus distorting the picture. It is very similar to the way that a scratch on a camera lens. It will cause there to be a blur or distortion in the area that the scratch is in. This is why it is so important to keep binoculars clean and to clean them the right way. If you don't clean them properly, you could end up creating the very scratches that you were attempting to prevent just by cleaning the lenses improperly.

Firstly, How To Clean Binoculars Outside?

When you first go to clean a set of binoculars, you will want to start by cleaning off the outside. You can do this by using a dampened cloth. This removes any dust and debris from the outside of the binoculars that would otherwise find its way onto your lenses.

If you notice that there are any creases or crevices that have an accumulation of dust, feel free to use a can of compressed air to blast that dust into the past. This dust may not seem like it poses a huge threat to your binoculars, but hey, if you are going to do a job you might as well just do it right the first time around.

Secondly, How To Clean Binoculars Lens?

microfiber cloth

Next, we are going to talk about how to clean binocular lenses. When cleaning binocular lenses, use a microfiber cloth because it's especially made for optics. You probably got a microfiber cloth with your binocular in the kit. If not, I suggest you to buy one, or better yet, buy a complete optics cleaning kit.

It's best not to use your shirt tail, your handkerchief, or a tissue to clean your optics and don't use any running water. If you clean your binoculars improperly, anything that’s on the lens will cause these micro-scratches and that’s going to degrade the light as it comes through.

Not only the lenses, but the coding on the lenses will be affected by these scratches as well, and that degrades your view because it breaks up the light waves that are coming through the lenses.

In most cases that’s all you need for a quick clean, but if have any stubborn stains like finger prints or water spots, just use a drop of the anti-fog lens cleaner solution (I recommend Vortex) on the lens, and then use the cloth to wipe them clean.

Rub down gently and in circular motion on the lenses in order to fully wipe them down and clean off any oil or grease as well. After you do that, use a dry corner of your cloth (microfiber) and once again hit the lenses the same way. You may have to repeat the whole process if your lenses are extremely dirty or greasy. Once you do that once or twice through, your lenses should be nice and pristine clean.

Use a cleaning solution that is meant for coated lenses. You don’t want to buy and use anything like Windex or just any other cleaning solution you find at the store because it might not be good for your lenses.

An alternative way to clean the dust and dirt off of your lenses is to use a can of compressed air. Make sure to hold the can upright and use short bursts of air as opposed to longer ones as the longer bursts can cause harm to your lenses.

There are some really amazing lens cleaning kits that you can buy that are a combination of a brush and air to kind of knock that dust out of the park. The best one that I have come across so far is the Carson C6 CS-10 Lens Cleaner, They use a dry cleaning compound that does not contain any alcohol so it is perfect for this kind of cleaning job.

A cleaning pen with retractable brush can also be used to wipe out the lenses and brush them off. On the other end, the pen has a handy little tip with a dry cleaning solution on there with which you can also clean up the lenses; it’s great for dusty conditions too.

Thirdly, How To Clean Binoculars Internal?

Sometimes you might notice that your lenses are cloudy and foggy on the inside so you need to learn how to clean binoculars inside. The cause for this could be a leak in the camera but most often it’s just condensation caused by an instant change of temperature.

For example, going from cool temperature to hot and sunny weather will create condensation on the glasses. You can wipe the condensation found on the outside of your lenses with a microfiber cloth. Once the microfiber cloth gets dirty, don’t try to wash it or reuse it, just throw it away.

The moisture found inside the lenses will gradually disappear as soon as the lenses get accustomed with the outside temperature. To completely get rid of the internal condensation, you should place the binoculars in a dry place for at least twelve hours. You need to do this if you want to avoid the formation of mold and fungus on the inside of your lenses.

If your binoculars are water-proofed then this problem would not occur due to the way this type of binoculars are created; if condensation still happens, that means there is a leak for sure, and you should contact your manufacturer as soon as possible for repairs.

Do not attempt to make the repairs by yourself. You might damage or miss-align the sensitive optical elements of your binoculars.

Finally, How To Clean Sticky Rubber On Binoculars?

To clean up the rubber armoring use a little bit of rubbing alcohol on a little cloth or cotton pad. It takes the dirt right off. Just make sure not to get any rubbing alcohol on the lenses.

The biggest mistake people make is cleaning their binoculars too often. You should only clean your binoculars when it’s really needed. Cleaning it too often will just increase the chance of scratching your lenses.

In the near future we'll talk in great detail about the following subjects: how to clean old binoculars, how to clean Swarovski binoculars, how to clean Bushnell binoculars.So please stay tuned and thank you for reading!


"Smith is an outdoor enthusiast and Just loves everything about binoculars. Since his childhood he has been a fan of optical gadgets & going into the Jungle with his uncle was his favorite pastime. Besides, He loves watching & studying birds & animals. He is a mechanical engineering graduate and New Jersey Resident. He loves to review binoculars and related optical Instruments and loves testing each one of them." When he is not fiddling with one of his binoculars, you can find him playing his favorite sport Pickleball."

  • J Jones says:

    I would like to share my own experience 🙂
    My Tasco 7X35 #2000 binoculars are not waterproof. After 10 years in the shed, they were opaque. Moisture.
    I removed the objective lenses and cleaned them. Next I hung the binoculars and lenses in front of a window unit AC for a couple of hours.
    Much better now.


  • Marko says:

    First of all idea are very nice and I do enjoy to read. I think can take some points for for apply. it is urgent to clean the binocular and important to the proper use of it. Thanks

  • Nan says:

    My brother left our binoculars (family heirloom) on the shelf above our stove so he could grab them quick. The lenses have a coating of grease. What can I safely do to clean them?

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