Quality Finds, Unbeatable Prices - TopBudgetFinds, Your Savings Headquarters

How to properly and safely clean your records

Key Takeaways

  • Keep your vinyl records clean and free of debris to get the best sound quality.
  • Use a clean microfiber cloth or velvet cleaning brush to remove dust and static from your records before playing them.
  • For deeper cleaning, use distilled water or a vinyl cleaning solution to wipe down the record in a circular motion, avoiding the center label.

The warm, rich sound of a great vinyl record played over the right equipment is something you can never unhear once you’ve experienced it. The spellbinding ups and downs of the inlaid grooves in the plastic reveal a full spectrum of sound. Keeping those grooves clean and free of debris is paramount to getting the most out of each record.


4 tips for keeping your vinyls sounding and looking great

Luckily, keeping your vinyls in good condition doesn’t require too much maintenance, but here are the top ways to care for your collection.

Whether you are already a seasoned vinyl collector, a casual listener, or someone thinking about picking up record collecting as a hobby, we thought it might be nice to put together a guide on how to properly clean your vinyl records.

A light dusting

Keeping your record collection in good condition is a matter mostly of preventative maintenance, and if you’ve acquired a brand-new record, or found an old one in great condition, keeping it clean is incredibly simple.

Each time you pull out a record to play on your table, take a clean microfiber cloth or velvet vinyl cleaning brush and give it a wipe to remove any dust that might have accumulated since your last spin.

Velvet Brush Vinyl Cleaning-1

When wiping or brush your record, be sure to follow the same circle as the grooves.

You’ll want to be a bit gentle so that you can catch any potential damage before it occurs. Follow this process to remove any light dust and static from your record before playing it.

Be sure to place your records inside anti-static dust sleeves and then always place them inside the record jacket as it helps prevent build-up between spins.

The old dusty record

Maybe you’ve just pulled out an old record from your parents’ attic that hasn’t been touched in 40 years. If it was properly stored it might be quite clean, but if not, it will likely have quite a bit of dust on it from the years.

For a deeper cleaning, take that same clean microfiber cloth and dampen it a bit with distilled water. You’ll want to use distilled water because tap water can leave behind minerals and residue in the grooves when it dries.

Once you have your dampened microfiber cloth, wipe the record down, again making sure to wipe in a circular motion following the grooves.

You’ll want to avoid the center of the record though, so as not to wet the center label.

The center label is often made of paper, and could warp or bubble if it gets wet.

EVEO Premium Vinyl Record Cleaner Kit

EVEO Premium Vinyl Record Cleaner Kit

Best vinyl cleaning kit

A simple kit with all the essentials

This kit includes a velvet cleaning brush, a vinyl cleaning solution spray, a plastic cleaning gel for your cartridge needle, and a small dusting brush.

If you don’t have distilled water, you could also use a vinyl cleaning solution. These solutions which are found readily available online or in your local record store have safe vinyl ingredients. Typically, these will come in the form of a spray. You’ll spray the solution on the microfiber cloth to dampen it, then wipe down your record as before.

If your record is really grimey, you can spray the cleaning solution directly onto the vinyl, being sure to avoid the center, and wipe down from there.

What should I do if my vinyl is warped or scratched?

Unfortunately, there is nothing you can do to fix a warped or scratched record, which is why proper storage, cleaning, and maintenance are so important. Keep your records away from heat, and be sure they are always safely stored in their protective sleeves.

What if my vinyl is caked in mud?

You must have quite a story to tell if you have a vinyl that is totally caked in residue, mud, or some other substance. If you feel this is a record worth trying to rescue, i.e, you can’t just pick up another copy for $10 or $20, and you absolutely must try to clean it, then perform the following emergency surgery.


Digital point-and-shoot cameras are in again. Here’s what to know before buying one

Sorry, ’90s babies. Your aesthetic is vintage now, but it’s back in style and a point-and-shoot is the perfect way to achieve it.

Grab yourself a gallon of distilled water from the grocery store. Only distilled water, as even the best tap water, will have minerals and residue that will dry on your vinyl. Get yourself a container wide enough and deep enough to hold your vinyl and the distilled water. Soak the vinyl in a solution of distilled water and a little bit of liquid dish detergent.

Once whatever has stuck to your vinyl has softened, wipe off with a microfiber cloth. Work your way through all the cleaning steps until you have a dry, clean vinyl. Always let your vinyl completely dry before playing.

Trending Products

Add to compare
Corsair 5000D Airflow Tempered Glass Mid-Tower ATX PC Case – Black

Corsair 5000D Airflow Tempered Glass Mid-Tower ATX PC Case – Black

Add to compare
CORSAIR 7000D AIRFLOW Full-Tower ATX PC Case, Black

CORSAIR 7000D AIRFLOW Full-Tower ATX PC Case, Black

Add to compare
Corsair iCUE 4000X RGB Mid-Tower ATX PC Case – White (CC-9011205-WW)

Corsair iCUE 4000X RGB Mid-Tower ATX PC Case – White (CC-9011205-WW)


We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply

Register New Account
Compare items
  • Total (0)
Shopping cart