DIY – How to clean records

This is a tip on how to do a basic cleaning without an expensive machine… not how i do it, -this is for the beginner… and therefore more practical…

If you’ve found a great lp at a garage sale, or, your favorite aunt has given you her old records out of her basement, they may need a cleaning. There are a few simple things that you can do to safely make your listening experience far more pleasant. First, mix 5% isopropyl alcohol with 95% distilled water. Then, use the mixture to wet a clean, 100% cotton facecloth. Moving in a circular motion with the grooves of the record, gently wipe the surface. Once it seems like all dirt and mold has been removed, keep wiping around, just as the needle would travel, using a fresh part of the cloth each time, until the surface is completely dry. With some practice, you will be amazed at just how much you can upgrade your records! The same mixture can be used to clean mold from the jackets, -but be sparing and be quick about it! The mixture can easily damage the more delicate paper surfaces. Try these methods out on records you don’t care about first so that you can become familiar with the motions. -As for old stickers, there are dozens of different adhesives that were used over the last few decades, and some will come off easily, whereas others will seem impossible to remove. The first rule of sticker removal is “slowly and patiently”. Also, a small lighter held deftly and very shortly beneath the sticker can heat up the adhesive and make it gummy enough to give way again. Once the sticker is removed, there may be some black char left by the lighter’s flame around the edges of where the sticker was. When this area is room temperature again, a quick wipe with the cotton cloth and a touch of the water mixture may remove it all. Beware, the paper in this area is extremely sensitive after being heated and it will be easy to damage it. As with anything else that you’re not sure of, slowly and patiently is the key to restoring any antique or collectable. If you’re not sure how to proceed, do your research first.

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