How to Clean Tolex on a Guitar Amplifier

Written by contributing writer | 13/05/2017

Tolex was originally utilised by Fender back in the 1960s. You know it as the flexible vinyl material on amps and guitar cases that has wrinkles and crevices, which quickly attract dust and dirt. There are several products on the market designed to clean and polish your guitar, but finding a product to specifically clean your Tolex-covered amplifier can prove difficult. Using chemicals or harsh cleaners is usually harmful for your valuable equipment; this method of cleaning Tolex only requires safe household items.

Unplug your amplifier and place it in a "wash area" away from guitars, pedals or electronics.

Fill a small bucket or large bowl with lukewarm water. Mix in a moderate portion of mild soap. The water should be slightly soapy.

Submerge a soft cloth and soft nylon brush in the water. Gently wring out the cloth and shake out the nylon brush to remove excess water. Applying too much water can possibly get the electronics wet and may cause damage.

Apply the soapy soft cloth to the amp and gently scrub the first panel. Continue to soak your cloth in the water as needed. As much as possible, avoid getting the non-Tolex areas wet. Use the nylon brush to remove the dirt in the crevices and corners.

Work your way panel by panel around the amp until complete. Use a dry soft cloth to dry each panel as you go.


Never use any harsh cleaners on your amplifier. Take your time and be gentle when cleaning your amp.

Tips and warnings

  • Never use any harsh cleaners on your amplifier.
  • Take your time and be gentle when cleaning your amp.

Things you need

  • Mild soap
  • Small bucket or large bowl of lukewarm water
  • Soft nylon brush
  • 2 soft cloths

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