If you have vinyl records at home, they are likely cherished classics that hold sentimental value to you. While much of the music on vinyl records is now available on CDs, for many people, there is nothing quite like the charm of listening to vintage music in its original form. However, vinyl records are more delicate than CDs and require careful handling and regular cleaning to keep them in good condition. Playing a dirty record can damage both the record itself and the stylus of the record player.
Here are some steps to follow for proper vinyl record care:
- Dust off the records before and after each use. Use a soft cloth to gently wipe the surface. If you have a large collection, it is worth investing in a carbon fiber record cleaning brush, which can be purchased from music stores or stores that sell vintage records. Always wipe the record in a circular motion following the grooves. Avoid rubbing too hard, as this can damage or break the record. Do not blow on the record, as moisture from your breath can get trapped in the grooves and attract dirt.
- For heavily soiled records, it is best to use a specialized record cleaning spray or solution. However, even these solutions can have an impact on the record if used too frequently, so clean your records only when necessary. Follow the usage instructions provided by the specific brand carefully.
- If record cleaning solutions and sprays are not available, you can make your own solution. In a clean plastic or glass bowl, create a solution using 80% distilled water and 20% isopropyl alcohol. Use only distilled water, as tap water contains minerals that can affect the record surface. And use only isopropyl alcohol, as any other type of alcohol is too strong and may damage the record.
- Start by wiping off the surface dirt using the method mentioned above.
- Dip a piece of clean, soft, lint-free fabric into the solution, making sure it becomes damp but not dripping wet. Use this fabric to wipe the record surface in a circular motion, following the grooves. Gently rub any stained areas to loosen the dirt.
- Be careful not to let any moisture come into contact with the record labels. Moisture can loosen the glue and cause the labels to come off.
- Once both sides of the record are clean, use a clean, soft fabric to dry them off. Then, place the record on a soft fabric and let it air dry completely. Remember to always handle a record by its edges and avoid touching the record surface.
Following these guidelines will help ensure that your vinyl records stay in excellent condition, allowing you to continue enjoying the timeless music they hold.
Manuel Marino is a seasoned Senior Producer, Music Composer, and Artist with over a decade of experience. He specializes in branded entertainment across various mediums, including video games, films, and advertising campaigns. With 20+ years as a game music composer, Manuel has worked on numerous platforms, creating diverse orchestral soundtracks. HIRE ME