How to Clean and Disassemble a Canon Lens

Written by naomi bolton Google
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How to Clean and Disassemble a Canon Lens
Canon lenses should be cleaned as infrequently as possible. (zoom lens image by leafy from

Disassembling and cleaning a Canon single-lens reflex camera's lens should be done as infrequently as possible and with great caution. Rubbing a lens with a cloth can cause gathered dirt to scrape over the glass and damage it forever. Smears caused by cleaning or rubbing can also spoil your photos more than a few specks of dust can. Try to prevent getting dirt on your Canon's lens by using a filter and always attaching a lens cap after use. If you have to clean the lens, do it the correct way.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Lens blower
  • Lens cleaning fluid
  • Clean microfiber cloth or lens tissues

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  1. 1

    Disassemble your lens. If it is still attached to the camera, take it off. Use your left hand to hold the camera and press the lens release button on the left hand side while you turn the lens to the right with you right hand to unscrew it.

  2. 2

    Attach the camera cap to your camera body to prevent dust from going into the camera. Screw the rear lens cap onto the back end of your lens to protect it from dust while you are cleaning the front part.

  3. 3

    Take off the lens cap and unscrew the lens filter at the front of the lens. Set the filter aside for later cleaning. Lens filters don't come standard with Canon cameras, but you should always attach an ultraviolet filter or skylight filter to your lens as full-time protection. You can take photos through these filters to block out ultraviolet rays and prevent dust from gathering on the lens itself. It is cheaper to replace a filter if it is scratched or damaged than to replace a lens.

  4. 4

    Squeeze the lens blower a few times to get any dust that may be inside the device out. Now gently blow any dust from the lens surface. This will ensure that any gritty dust that can possibly scratch your lens when cleaning it with a cloth is removed.

  5. 5

    Place a drop of lens cleaning fluid on a lens tissue. Never use normal facial tissues or cloth, as these are not soft enough and will scratch your lens. Only use lens tissues once, and then throw them away.

  6. 6

    Do not apply lens cleaning fluid if you are using a microfiber cloth. These cloths are made from extremely small fibres, which are 1/100th of a human hair in diameter. As the fibres are wedge-shaped, they act to "suck up" any dirt and oil when wiped over the lens surface. Keep your microfiber cloth in a plastic bag and wash it regularly to prevent dirt from accumulating.

  7. 7

    Use the lens tissue or microfiber cloth to gently wipe the lens surface. Apply a lifting action when working from the edges toward the centre of the lens. Do not rub the lens with the cloth.

  8. 8

    Attach the lens cap to the front lens to protect it while you are cleaning the filter.

  9. 9

    Clean the filter on both sides by repeating Steps 3 through 6. Remove the lens cap, screw the filter back on, and attach the lens cap again.

  10. 10

    Remove the rear lens cap by unscrewing it, and repeat Steps 3 through 6 to clean the rear piece of the lens.

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