Question: I’ve been noticing some small black spots in my photos and after thoroughly cleaning both ends of my lens, I’m convinced that the dirt is on the camera sensor itself. The lens is as clean as it can be, so that’s not the problem. Also, these black spots recently appeared, so it’s not like there’s something inside the lens from the manufacturer.
Does anyone have any advice for me as far as cleaning the sensor goes? Has anyone ever done this sort of thing successfully? I’d like to do it myself because I always enjoy learning new things as well as saving some money. It seems like this would be a standard photography maintenance task.
Answer: This is a great question. I’ve cleaned a lot of sensors in my day and I can tell you that it’s a relatively simple task. If you have the right tools and a steady hand, you’ll have a clean sensor in no time. First, I suggest you read the related post that discusses camera sensor cleaning. That’s got a lot of great information in it.
I’m assuming you own a DSLR camera and it’s got the sensor cleaning function. Go into your menu area and activate the sensor cleaning mode. That will lock the camera’s mirror in the “up” position so it’s out of the way of the sensor. You’ll also need to remove the lens from the camera. Then, take the sensor cleaning tools that you purchased from your local camera shop or online and apply the solvent to the felt brush tip. Just one or two drops will be fine. By the way, here’s a quote from the blog post that talks about the cleaning kit:
The best way to clean your camera’s sensor is to use a sensor cleaning kit. There are many brands out there available, such as VSGO, SANHOOII, Tycka and Altura and most of them cost between $10 and $20. To see what I’m referring to, just visit Amazon.com and search for “camera sensor cleaning kit.”
Once the liquid has been applied to the brush, place the brush on one side of the sensor and pull it across very gently. Then, place the brush on the other side of the sensor and pull it in the opposite direction. That’s all it takes. Just two swipes with the wet brush and your sensor should be clean. Please be aware though, when ordering or purchasing the cleaning kit, you’ll need to get the one that’s fitted for your camera. There are lots of sensor sizes out there and you wouldn’t want to order a kit that includes a brush that’s too large for your camera.
Once you’re finished, turn the camera off to take it out of the cleaning mode you put it in, attach the lens again and then start taking pictures. I hope this helps.
Reply: Thank you for your help. I bought SANHOOII swabs which were sealed in a vacuum package and it did great job. I can clean the camera on my own now. It saved me a lot of money. Now I want to pick up a cleaning set as a backup.