Lens cleaning disc, Good or Bad?

i have used the lens cleaning disc on my cd players in the past, you know the disc with the little brush. however im not sure about using one on my sony dvd drive. are they safe? is there an alternative method? should i just use compressed air?

When out of warranty, and if easy to do I clean things like this by hand as you cant get better because you can see it, but if its still new and covered, just use a lens cleaner [I]‘thing’[/I], but check to see just how hard the bit that is going to do the cleaning is… I got a silly cheap one a while back from a pound shop (as it was only a quid after all) and when I felt the brush I thought better not to use it as it was harder than a tooth brush, it only wants to get the dust off after all.

See what the makers web site or whatever has to say as well, just in case they say not to for some weird reason.

The best method, when out of warranty, is a “cotton fioc” (I mean the tool used to clean ears) with a liquid to clean glasses lens. :wink:

thanks for your replies.

i use same thing myself… the cotton swab + isopropyl alcohol… i used the stuff for years on my cd players etc etc and it seems to work well.

Woohoo! I never thought I’d get the chance to say this. :slight_smile:

Whatever you do, [B]NEVER[/B] use a lens cleaning disc with your DVD±RW, for it will [U]permanently[/U] damage/scratch your lens, resulting in unburned spots (slashes, actually) on your media exactly where the brush is located on the cleaning disc. I don’t know if it’s called the “track” – but something is definitely affected, and the result is not good. :disagree: :eek: :Z

I wish I had time to go into more detail, as I spent a day and a half killing my poor ND-3540A…

Just please take my word for it, you won’t be happy.

An awful lot of dust accumulates in there, at least it did in mine, over 18 months. If yours is anything like mine, you’d have to be pretty foolish to directly clean the lens by any means without first removing all the loose dust.

Cotton and alcohol might be good, if done correctly. If you go the cotton route, my optics cleaning experience says to not use much pressure, softly pass the moist swab over the lens and if it’s not clean repeat with a fresh swab.

I was hoping someone might recommend some (any) particular cleaning disc to avoid tedious work. I don’t know what the brushes are made of, but they only clean for a very brief period at slow speed. Again, any direct cleaning of the lens without first removing loose debris is foolish.

There are minor risks to everything: cotton, alcohol, brushes and air.


many manufacturers of optical drives strongly advise not to use such a “cleaning disc”. I think they have reasons for that warning.


again thanks for the replies.

not haveing any trouble just was curious. but if i do i will not use a lens cleaning disk, figured they were junk.

What better things do you have to do? Just clean the lens in all your drives then you know they are good to go :slight_smile:

not all of us have the luxury of being retired. :smiley:

It’s ok to be retired…It just depends on how well you want to take care of your drives… it has nothing to do about retirement :wink:

is there a way to clean drives other than optical lens such as floppy or zip? and i assume that HDD’s are sealed?

There are several warnings with cleaner discs, some of the more legacy issues being to ensure the cleaner disc is intended for the right kind of drive, because there are some small differences between CD and DVD drives, and also if you have a front loading drive rather than tray loading the cleaner discs can get stuck.

My understanding is cleaner discs don’t fully spin up in the drive (they turn slowly several times), at least not in the cleaner portion (some use hybrid discs with audio/video testing features), so if used properly I’m pretty sure they’re safe. However, almost anything can damage the lens.

I would like to know which manufacturer/s advise against cleaner discs, preferably with references, as I’ve never seen this.

HDDs are sealed and if the HDD case is breached, the HDD dies unless you’re in a “clean room” (wear special suit, filtered air, etc.).

Floppy disk cleaners at least used to use a floppy disk case with an absorbent fibrous disc you squirted some cleaner on, then typed some dos command to make it spin briefly.