How to clean a car CD player

Updated July 20, 2017

Over time, CDs, CD players, DVD players and DVDs become dusty and scratched and must be cleaned. This involves a specific procedure, otherwise they may become more scratched and non-playable. Here is a simple way to clean a car CD player without doing any damage.

Use the cleaner CD first. Allow it to go through its entire cleaning cycle. This will remove any dust on the lenses. Remove the cleaner CD and return to storage box (see Resources below).

Use the scratch remover that came with your kit. Put a CD on the cleaner pad. Close the clear door over the CD. Rotate the discs using the handle on the scratch filler.

Remove the discs from the scratch remover and apply filler from the tube provided in your kit. Apply filler in a straight lines, moving from the centre outward. Wipe off using a lint-free swab (never dry in circles).

Spray the CD with alcohol provided with your kit. Use a clean, lint-free swab from your kit to wipe off the alcohol (again, using straight strokes from the centre outward). Test your player operation and disc function. If you still have minor problems, repeat the cleaning steps and try again.


Clean the CD player at least once a week to keep dust and dirt from clouding the mirrors.


Do not reuse lint-free swabs.

Things You'll Need

  • CD/DVD cleaning kit
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About the Author

Paul Vaughn has worked in the auto and diesel mechanics field for 10 years and as public school automotive vocational teacher for five years. He currently teaches high school auto tech, covering year model vehicles as old as 1980 to as new as 2007.