There’s nothing more frustrating than when you have a wildlife trophy right in your scope, and you still miss your shot. It’s even more frustrating when you could have prevented the miss by simply cleaning your rifle scope.
Your accuracy as a marksman depends primarily on the reliability of your rifle scope. If your scope is off-centered, not calibrated properly, or even just dirty, you will miss your intended target. A clean rifle scope is an accurate scope.
By the time you finish reading this article, you will understand the major steps for cleaning your rifle scope.
How Often to Clean a Rifle Scope
First and foremost, don’t clean your rifle scope if it’s not dirty. Spending unnecessary time working with the scope could damage it. The best rifle scope will be clean but not unnecessarily tampered with.
Small amounts of debris on the outside of the best rifle scope will not throw off your accuracy. Dust on the eyepiece, however, can be a problem. Thus, you’ll have to spend more time cleaning your eyepiece than any other part of the scope.
You typically cannot easily see the dust on the objective lens. Thus, you can leave that alone unless the dust is visible to the naked eye. Use a lens cover regularly to keep your objective lens clean.
Begin by using a microfiber cloth to dust off your lens. Do not use your shirt or another piece of material or tissue nearby. Specks of dust can create small scratches on your lense.
At first, you won’t notice these scratches. But eventually, those scratches will accumulate and degrade your lens clarity.
Fabric engineers designed microfiber clothes specifically to clean oil and smudges off the glass without leaving behind cotton fibers or scratches. For this reason, you can trust a microfiber cloth to leave your scope clean.
Keep Your Lens Dry
For stubborn dirt, you will be tempted to spray cleaner directly on the lens. Stay away from window cleaners like Windex. These will cause more harm than good, affecting the coating on your lens.
Instead, if you must use a cleaner, use an eyeglass cleaner or lens cleaner. Spray the microfiber cloth instead of the lens. This will keep moisture away from the seals on the scope.
Use the cleaner sparingly.
Keep Your Cap On
Keep your scope cap on as you clean the rifle. When you clean your rifle, you will use powerful powders and solvents. These chemicals can negatively affect the waterproof seals on your scope as well as the lens coating.
Even as you’re trekking with your rifle, keep the lens cap on to protect your scope. This will keep debris, pollen, dust, and rain out of the scope.
Scopes have small spaces that a microfiber cloth cannot reach. In these cases, use a Q-tip to get all the nooks, crannies, ridges, and tight spots of the scope.
Wrap the microfiber cloth around the q-tip to prevent whisps of cotton from sticking behind.
If you want to reach the details of your lens, look at the tools that photographers use. There are specially designed tools for cleaning lenses that have multiple ends to them. These ends may have bristles for dusting off a lens and then another end with a carbon cleaning compound that rubs out obscuring smudges.
If you do use such a tool, make sure the brush is clean of debris and oil first.
Clean Your Turrets
If you’ve been hunting recently, you need to clean your turrets. These small elements of your scope can rust if they’ve not cared for the property. A microfiber cloth over a q-tip will help you reach the tiny areas of the turret.
Clean the turrets after you clean your lens so you don’t risk scratching the lens.
Clean After You Hunt
To care best for your scope, you should bring a cleaning kit with you when you hunt. This way if Mother Nature decides to throw some real curveballs at you, you’re ready.
You could get stuck in a torrential downpour or a dust storm that will wreak havoc on your scope lens. If this happens, you’ll be ready with your cleaning kit, so you can clean off your lens before wet mud turns to caked-on dirt.
Pay special attention to the battery compartment of your scope if you have a battery-powered scope. Moisture can get in this compartment, and you need to keep it dry.
Furthermore, sometimes battery acid will leak into the compartment. If you don’t catch this problem right away, the acid will ruin your scope. Cleaning the battery compartment will help you catch the acid before it becomes a bigger problem.
Be Gentle and Smart
You absolutely should clean your lens completely when it’s dirty. But don’t clean it aggressively. Wipe the lens only as much as you need to and not even a little more.
Remember, tiny dust particles, obscure to the naked eye, can cause tiny scratches. Whenever you try to wipe your lens, you run the risk of causing more scratches.
If you can see through your lens, then do not clean it.
Clean and Hunt With Confidence
A dirty rifle scope, be it a thermal rifle scope, night rifle scope, or just average scope, can ruin the perfect shot. Keep your rifle scope clean and accurate by cleaning it when it needs a good cleaning.
Are you looking for a place to sell your rifle scope? If so, contact us. We have a vast inventory of scopes and are always looking to add to the inventory.
Give us a call today, and let us help you sell your scope.