Microscopes are some of the most important pieces of equipment in any lab, classroom or medical facility, so taking good care of them is paramount. Like any frequently used device, microscopes can easily get dirty and need cleaning. To ensure that you are doing the best job possible, follow a few of these essential microscope cleaning dos and don’ts.
Do: Use All the Proper Tools
Your microscope is full of tiny moving parts, so it is important not to take the cleaning process for granted. Start it off right by using the proper cleaning materials. The essentials of a microscope cleaning kit include a specialized soft cotton cloth, cotton-tipped swabs and our proprietary microscope cleaning solution that’s great for clearing away dust, dirt and oils. Be sure to also check out our specialized Optical CleaningKit that can help make cleaning objective lenses and eyepieces a breeze.
Don’t: Cut Corners With Cleaning
Choosing the proper cleaning materials is key, so under no circumstances should you cut corners by using ordinary paper, fabric or your fingers. Using the wrong materials can make a small problem worse. For example, using a rough cloth or paper to try and clean a dirt lens can result in dirt being pressed against the lens, leading to scratches or other damages that can’t be reversed. Just as when you clean any type of glass, you want to avoid pushing the dirt or dust into the surface of the glass. As Micscape Magazinenotes, microscopes feature very small and sensitive parts, and the last thing you want to do is avoid grinding even the most microscopic particle into the soft glass.
Do: Clean Eyepiece Lenses Carefully
Seeing clearly through the microscope’s eyepiece is paramount because clarity is necessary for your work. To clean these components, though, sometimes a surprisingly simple cleaning method words best: Your breath! As Leica ScienceLab mentions, breathing a bit of condensation from your warm breath onto the eyepiece can help remove water-soluble dirt and impurities. Simple breath and wipe in a center-out circular motion. For more stubborn problems, using a cloth moistened with a 95 percent alcohol solution can help. Be sure to dry the lens afterward with a cotton cloth.
Don’t: Let Your Microscope Get Dirty in the First Place
Rather than having to spend hours cleaning every crease and crevice of your microscope, try to avoid the problem and keep your device in prime working condition by being proactive with your storage. Simply put, the best way to prevent filth is to constantly keep the dust cover over the microscope whenever you are not using it. You can also use a gallon-size resealable bag as an option if you don’t have a dust cover available.
If you need help maintaining or calibrating your microscope or you are just looking to buy a new or refurbished model, Absolute Clarity & Calibration is here to serve. We provide optical calibration, repair and preventative maintenance services, and we would love to assist you, your company or your organization to keep your microscopes in tip-top shape. Call us at 860-583-0502 today to learn more.