Spotting scopes are built rugged for outdoor use. They are also an expensive investment if you enjoy hunting. Your spotting scope can last a long time if you take a little time and give it occasional cleanings. It does not take a long time to do proper maintenance on your scope and give it a good cleaning. If you want your scope to continue to perform and look like new, you want to take a few minutes and clean it.
If you do not clean your spotting scope, its performance will decrease. This occurs when dirt, dust, smudges or even fungal growth accumulating on the front of your scope lens. When your scope is dirty, you will begin to see spots, blurry images, and dirt when viewing objects. The view from a dirty scope is mostly noticed in dim and poor light conditions, like when viewing at dusk or dawn. If you want to prolong your scope’s lens life and keep it functioning properly, you need to take proper care of it and clean it properly.
Cleaning your scope regularly and properly will save the protective coated optics in your scope from serious damages. To maintain optimum performance, you should clean your scope more often than you clean your rifle. However, do not go overboard. Overcleaning your scope is not necessarily ideal for the overall lifespan of your scope. Try to moderately clean it on a regular schedule.
Using your scope outside will expose your scope to dirt and dust. Weather conditions such as rain, snow, and fog will also cause your scope to get dirty. These water elements can leave water spots and stains on the lens. If you do not clean your scope before each use, the residue left from the previous use can cause your views to be distorted.
It is important before you begin the cleaning process to consult your scope’s owner’s manual to ensure you are taking your scope model’s individual needs into account. Here is a list of basic and proper steps to follow when cleaning your scope.
Read more: How To Use A Spotting Scope
5 Simple Steps to Clean your Scope
1. Remove any loose dirt from the scope’s lens surface. You should probably buy a cleaning kit for this step. You can purchase an inexpensive kit at your local rifle shop. When cleaning, avoid blowing your breath on your lens. Particles and debris from your mouth may splatter out and become attached to the lens surface. Do not use any form of compressed air on the lense. Compressed air contains chemicals that may erode the lens protective coatings. It’s best to use a squeeze blower and soft brush to clean the lens. These items will be included in your kit. You should gently remove all the dirt and dust particles from the scope before you start cleaning it.
You can use a lens pen to clean the lens. These devices are designed to clean the lens surface of dust and debris without causing any scratches on the lens. If you decide to use a lens pen, make sure there is no oil or grease on the pen. Take time to wipe the lens pen before each use. This will eliminate the possibility of transferring any oils, grease or other toxins to the lens surface.
2. Wash the lens with the lens-safe cleaning solution included in your cleaning kit. Make sure to only use solutions and/or sprays that are recommended to clean lenses. Do not use eyeglass cleaning solutions, window washing solutions, alcohol or plain tap water to clean your lens. These solutions contain chemicals that may be too harsh and will damage the lens protective coating. Use a cotton swab to clean the lens. Dampen the cotton swab and make and make circular motions on the lens until you have completely covered the entire lens surface.
3. Dry the lens with a soft, microfiber cloth or a high-grade fabric cloth specially made for optic lens cleaning. It is highly recommended to use a thick, soft, high-grade microfiber cloth. Make sure the cloth you use is chemical-free. Using such a product will help you to remove the dirt, dust, and stains safely without scratching the lens or damaging the protective coatings. You should always use a clean cloth to dry your lens properly. You should keep a separate cloth just for use on the lens. The cloth you use to clean the entire scope can pick hold dust and dirt that may damage the lens. Never use materials such as paper towels, tissues, or tee shirts to clean your lens. These materials will leave fibers that can gouge the class and scratch the coating.
4. Clean the scope body with another clean cloth. Before wiping the scope, use your blower to free embedded dust and dirt particles from the finer crevices on your scope. Then use a clean, damp cloth to wipe the entire surface down. Take precautions not to smudge your cleaned lens during this step.
5. The last step is to carefully store your scope. Place a protective cap over the lens. If you have a scope carrying case, place the scope in it. If you do not have a case, wrap your scope in a soft, dry cloth to keep dust from getting on it. Make sure you keep your scope stored safely. Store your scope in a dry, clean place where moisture will not be present to cause rust or erosion on your scope.
Never attempt to dismantle your spotting scope. Cleaning the inside will provide a chance you may scratch the delicate lens glass inside the scope. Taking your scope apart will void your manufacturer’s warranty. If you want the scope’s inside cleaned, contact the manufacturer and request suggestions and recommendations on how to accomplish this. You can also take your scope to a professional to perform this crucial step.
With regular cleaning, your spotting scope can last a long time. These simple steps will not take long to perform. You can do these steps when you come home with a fresh kill after hunting. This will have your spotting scope ready to use when you decide to go hunting again.
Use the steps mentioned above to clean and maintain your scope. They will help you keep your spotting scope ready for your next hunting trip and looking good. If you keep your scope clean and treat with care, your scope will serve you for many long years.
If you feel you need more information you can type ‘How to Clean Spotting Scope’ in Google or on Youtube. You will find many other articles online telling you how to clean your spotting scope. You can even find videos online regarding this subject.
You know your spotting scope was an expensive piece of equipment. Besides your rifle, It is one of the most important investments you’ve made. Especially if you enjoy hunting. Remember, keeping your scope clean is important for optimum performance and your viewing pleasure while on your hunt for the big one.