People listen to music on vinyl records for a variety of reasons. Some love the old-school way of listening to music, while others claim that nothing beats the quality of sound that vinyl records produce. Regardless, we all can agree that damaged vinyl records don’t do us any good, and the main cause of such damage is nothing more than dust and dirt!
The most critical aspect of ensuring your vinyl records longevity is its cleanliness. Any dirt or grime on the records interferes with the music quality and can lead to permanent damages. With that in mind, if you own plenty of vinyl records and want to make sure they continue producing excellent music for years to come, here are the things you will need to do to ensure they are as clean as they can be:
1. Wipe them down
The easiest and perhaps most common task you will do to maintain your record is to wipe them down with a lint-free cloth to remove dirt and dust. You can also use a record cleaning brush, as it can slip between the grooves of the record to clean properly. In fact, this should be part of your maintenance process from the first day you bring a new record home, since the packaging may have caused some dust to land on the records.
In the case that you find dust or dirt that does not seem to come off, you can rinse them in cool water. Use distilled water if possible, as it is the purest form of water. Keep in mind to avoid wetting the label, as it can be damaged if it comes into contact with moisture.
2. Use a proper cleaner
Regular wipe downs do well in combating dirt and dust, but when it comes to deeper cleaning solutions, you will need a record cleaner for the job. These cleaners are generally water-based or enzyme-based, but generally, all record cleaners do well.
To use a record cleaner, apply a small amount of the substance onto a cloth and wipe in circular motions following the grooves of the vinyl record. Again, be sure to avoid the label, as any moisture there can ruin the label. Be sure to thoroughly dry the record before playing it. Otherwise, you risk damaging the vinyl and the vinyl record player itself.
3. Store them properly
After using or cleaning your records, always store them properly. This means placing them in a clean and cool space, away from sunlight and any other sources of heat. Heat can cause the vinyl to warp, damaging it.
When storing your record collection, keep in mind that it isn’t only the location that matters but also the way the vinyl is stored. They should be stored vertically with ample space between each other records. Also, do not place too many records together. In case they start leaning on each other, having a few records means they do not press hard on each other. If you can, store them in their sleeve, but do not use paper sleeves as these can emit dust onto the records, forcing you to clean them again.
Proper care for your vinyl records ensures they last a long time, continuing to produce quality music to satisfy your ears. That said, do follow the tips we have shared with you, and do them regularly to ensure your vinyl records are always in perfect shape. This reduces the likelihood that you accidentally damage them or hurt your music experience and more time spent relaxing to good music.
Music Connection is an independent record store offering new and old vinyl records, CDs, DVDs, and more. If you are looking to purchase the best vinyls in Manchester, check out what we have to offer!