Cleaning your sensor

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Cleaning your sensor

Post by travis_cooper on Mon Feb 11, 2008 3:49 pm

There has been a little discussion on one of the images about cleaning your sensor, so I'll just move that over here so everybody can benefit from it. First of all, if you can't take your lens off, your sensor probably won't get dirty, and if it does you can't clean it yourself. If your sensor gets dust on it, then every picture you take will have dark spots where the dust is. Some cameras, although not very many, have a way to shake the sensor which gets rid of most dust, but even with those cameras sometimes we have to do it ourselves. Things to keep in mind, your sensor is really important to your camera, if you damage it you will have spots in every single picture you take afterwards. With this being said nothing should ever touch your sensor except for specific cleaning supplies.

Now, most of the time cleaning your sensor is really simple, it just takes some air. DO NOT use air canisters, those actually blow out some stuff that will get stuck on your sensor. If you don't believe me just take one and turn it upside down and push the button, you will see all sorts of white foam like stuff coming out. I recommend a giottos rocket blower. It is kind of like those blue bulbs, which some people use also, that you use to get snot out of your kids' noses. When getting a blower don't get one with bristles on the end, those can fall off and get on your sensor. When using a blower turn your camera upside down so dust that gets blown off falls out of the camera, just give it a few puffs and almost every time your dust will be gone.

If your dust isn't coming off you will have to use some cleaning supplies to clean it, these can be purchased at a camera store, but be careful not to scratch your sensor. The other option is to pay a store to clean it for you.

When cleaning your sensor you need to get the mirror out of the way, so in your manual it should tell you how to lock up your mirror. It will be in your menu system somewhere. HTH.

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Re: Cleaning your sensor

Post by travis_cooper on Mon Feb 11, 2008 3:52 pm

Here is the rocket blower I use. It is pretty cheap from B&H, and well worth every penny.

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Re: Cleaning your sensor

Post by FarrahJ on Mon Feb 11, 2008 4:02 pm

thanks, I really appreciate it =)
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Re: Cleaning your sensor

Post by FarrahJ on Mon Feb 11, 2008 4:07 pm

can I use one of the snot suckers? (I have one that I've never used for snot sucking)
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Re: Cleaning your sensor

Post by travis_cooper on Mon Feb 11, 2008 4:11 pm

FarrahJ wrote:can I use one of the snot suckers? (I have one that I've never used for snot sucking)

That should be just fine, the only difference I can see is that they probably aren't as powerful as the rocket blower. I haven't used one personally, but I have heard of several people using them.

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Re: Cleaning your sensor

Post by Jenluvs2scrap on Mon Feb 11, 2008 9:31 pm

I'm glad you clarified that the snot sucker was unused Farrah. LOL Laughing

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Re: Cleaning your sensor

Post by mommyg on Tue Feb 26, 2008 8:30 pm

Glad to see this, mine is terribly dirty right now! The only concern I have is there are a few spots that turn out red in the pictures ~ I'm hoping that's just dust too. My 5D is only a year old and I can't believe how dirty the sensor already is! Travis, does the blower you recommend work well on dust that has been on the sensor for awhile?
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Re: Cleaning your sensor

Post by travis_cooper on Tue Feb 26, 2008 10:27 pm

The blowers will only work on dust, but it doesn't really matter how long its been there, they should be able to get it off. If there is something that is moist at all it won't be able to take care of it. For that you need to clean it, either professionally, or if you are going to do it yourself make sure you buy a photography specific cleaning kit to avoid damaging your sensor.

The red spots could be dead pixels. This happens with all sensors. If that is what you have you can send in your camera and they will map those out. Basically they tell the camera that a certain pixel is dead so it should make it up based on what the surrounding pixels are.

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Re: Cleaning your sensor

Post by mommyg on Wed Feb 27, 2008 9:08 am

Thanks Travis.
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