Caring For Your Binoculars

By: Jerry Shepard

Going to a horserace? Perhaps you are going to trapse around the wild in search of our ornithological friends (birdwatching)? Then you will be needed a good pair of binoculars. After you have purchased them, you will not get much use from them if you do not take proper care of your binoculars. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and this adage holds true whether its changing the oil in your car at regular intervals or performing maintenance on your binoculars.

The first rule of proper binocular care is the same rule for doctors when they take the Hippocratic Oath which is first, Do No Harm. Your binoculars will not work very well for very long if you are constantly dropping them or mistreating them. Binoculars are a sensitive piece of ocular equipment and while they may seem sturdy, any repeated physical blow can cause the lenses to misalign and to blur the image.

So now that we are making sure that we are avoiding overt physical damage, we need to focus on proper cleaning. Maintaining the lenses is will be our main focus from now on. But in order to care for the lens properly one must make sure that it is free from dirt and debris. If the lens is dirty it will not focus properly and will issue a distorted image. So, to keep the lens clean we must clean it with the proper materials.

The materials needed to clean your binoculars are a proper cloth and the correct cleaning solution.
One should NEVER use ordinary cloth to clean the lenses of binoculars. Even if the cloth feels smooth to your skin, it has rough fibers that will damage the lenses by leaving scratches and other marks on the surface. The type of cloth you should use is a microfiber cloth. Microfiber cloth wins out because it is thinner than regular cloth, streaks less and is generally more gentle on the coating of the lens ( the coating on the lens is important as it prevents unfocused light from bouncing around inside the binoculars).

In order to protect the coating you must also use the correct cleaner when performing maintenance. Use an ordinary cleaner and you will damage the coating and permanently blur the lenses. This is because the coating on the lenses contains a chemical that can negatively react to an improper cleaning solvent.

One additionally factor to consider is that of moisture getting inside the binocular. Water is corrosive and can contain tiny bits of particulate which can accumulate inside the optic when water gets in and dries out. Therefore, if the binocular is to be used in an area which has high humidity, the best way to go is to buy a pair that is waterproof.

These are some of the things you need to consider when caring for our binoculars. If you maintain them properly, they will richly reward you for years to come.

Gadgets
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Gadgets