How to Clean Record Albums

By Jeremiah Blanchard

Things Needed

  • Record cleaning solution
  • Microfiber cloth

Classic vinyl record albums are a huge collectors item. Some older record albums have been auctioned for hundreds–even thousands–of dollars. Some music enthusiasts believe the old analogue sound of vinyl records is superior to the digital music produced today. The debate boils down to individual opinion and preference. Keeping vinyl records in optimum condition requires routine maintenance, and can be accomplished with record cleaning kits or household items.

Clean Up

Purchase a record cleaning kit at any vinyl record store or music store. You can buy a complete kit or just the cleaning solution if you have a soft microfiber cloth. These cloths usually come with sunglasses or eyeglasses, or you can purchase them separately at most retail stores.

Apply no more than three drops to the surface of the record or apply the solution directly to the cloth. Rub the solution in lightly with a spiral motion staying in sequence with the record grooves. Follow this procedure on the flip side.

Lay the record aside on a soft dry cloth and allow 10-15 minutes to dry completely. Then listen to the records to notice any scratches or loud static. Further cleaning may be required.

Tip

Record cleaning machines are available at most music stores if you do not wish to manually clean your records. Most music and record stores will clean your records for a small fee.

Warning

Do not submerge records in water as this will warp the record. Using abrasive cloths or paper towels will scratch or deposit debris in the grooves of the record.