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Sensor Cleaning

Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 2:37 pm
by ptrjong
Hi all,

Though I'm not too worried about a little dust spot or two on my sensor, it is currently very dirty. The D7100 seems susceptible to the problem, and the built-in cleaning function, not surprisingly, is inadequate to say the least.

I've used a sensor swab kit with reasonable succes in the past, but that was fairly expensive. I know that some people simply use alcohol (to be exact, isopropyl alcohol, (2-propanol, isopropanol, if I'm not mistaken).

Now I came across this - sterile medical sheets '70 per cent isopropyl;.

Put around the plastic sensor swab blade, I think these should do the trick at only 6 cents a sheet. Does anyone think this is not a good idea?


RE: Sensor Cleaning

Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 4:04 pm
by petertenthije
I would not risk it. They might leave residue behind, or tear up. You are after all messing around with the single most expensive part of the camera.

If the camera is really bad, take it to

RE: Sensor Cleaning

Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 6:39 pm
by ckw
The sensor will have coatings on it. The special expensive fluid is guaranteed not to react with it. Sure, you will hear of people who have used this or that and not had any problems, but is it really worth the risk?



RE: Sensor Cleaning

Posted: Thu Jul 16, 2015 11:00 pm
by marosbts
Just vacuum clean it. Most vacuum cleaners have a thin adapter, which actually fits fine into the camera. The good thing is, that actually you remove dust not only from the sensor, but also from the sensor chamber. Because on your camera the mirror actually moves up and down so it swirls the dust which is in the chamber and it will not be much time before the sensor is dirty again. I did on my Sony A700 which is still a DSLR and it reduced the cleaning interval a lot. On the A77 its not much of an issue as that has no moving mirror, but do it there as well.

RE: Sensor Cleaning

Posted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 3:01 am
by cpd
Do it this way:

3. (important bit)
4. (important bit)

Tiffen lens cleaning tissues you can use for this. And they use silbon paper in the video. Nikon Direct in Japan used to sell that kit.

I use Eclipse fluid for it. Use a blower first to blow away the dust, then wet clean what remains. This is what I do for the FX format Nikon cameras I have. Those are much more difficult to clean due to the bigger sensor. Do not use too much of the dehydrated ethanol, it will leave streaks if you do. And remember, a light touch!

This method is exactly how Nikon here does sensor cleaning, and I do the same as they do. Please note, sensor cleaning takes care and skill, if you don't do it correctly you could damage your sensor.

[Edited 2015-07-17 20:14:06]

RE: Sensor Cleaning

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:54 pm
by Blimpie
Would HIGHLY suggest avoiding IPA at all costs. Never tried the vacuum,; known people for years who swear by a Rocket Blower, but all it ever did to my Nikons was blow more dust on the sensor or made it harder to swab them off. Eclipse solution and PecPad swabs are not cheap, but in my experience are the best solution.