Clean record by playing feature image

Playing a vinyl record does not fully clean it. It will remove loose dust and dirt, but it won’t clean off anything more rigid like grease or compact dust. Playing a dirty record will actually damage the stylus, which will eventually damage the record itself.

In this article I’m quickly explaining why playing a vinyl record won’t clean it. In fact, it’s a bad idea to play dirty LPs. I’ll refer to previous articles I’ve written for cleaning records.


Should I Play Vinyl To Clean It

You shouldn’t play vinyl to clean them. It will only clean off loose dust. This is because the stylus actually presses very lightly on the grooves because of the counterweight.

If you just want to clean off the loose dirt, consider softly blowing over the record. Be careful not to get any saliva on your record. Vinyl records are quite waterproof, but mold is a bigger concern when considering moisture.

Damage From Playing Dirty Records

Playing a dirty vinyl record will cause damage. The damage is not direct, but indirect because the stylus will get dirty or damaged which will in turn lead to groove damage.

To prevent this, get into the habit of proper vinyl record storage and cleaning your vinyl collection.

Cleaning Dirty Records

I have written a handful of record cleaning guides. Vinyl can get dirty in many ways which each have a best cleaning practice. The most 9 common ways vinyl records get dirty are:

  1. Dust: How To Remove Dust From Vinyl Records
  2. Mold: How To Remove Mold From Vinyl Records
  3. Fingerprints: How To Remove Fingerprints From Vinyl Records
  4. Smell: How To Remove Smell From Vinyl Records – 5 Methods
  5. Glue: How To Remove Glue From Vinyl Records
  6. Paint: How To Remove Paint From Vinyl Records – 4 Methods
  7. Blood: How To Remove Blood From Vinyl Records
  8. Labels: How To Remove Labels From Vinyl Records
  9. Stickers: How To Remove Stickers From Vinyl Records

Thanks for reading. You can find more educational articles of mine here.

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