Caring for Vinyl Records
Take care of your vinyl by storing records as upright as possible - avoid laying them flat as this may lead to warping. Pick a dust free area, and away from sunlight. Always put them away after use and in proper sleeves. A tip is to turn the sleeve so the open end is not aligned with the record cover opening to prevent dust from entering.
Do not touch the grooves - hold the record by the outside rim when handling. Records build up static, and static is like a magnet to dust. Letting the record just sit on the platter causes a dust build-up - thats why it is good practice to put them away after use.
The best method depends on the type of contamination - dust, oily fingerprints, or mould.
Dust - cleaning new or relatively pristine records is simply getting rid the static and dust. Use only Carbon brushes, and wipe records every time you play. Other brushes cause a static build-up and even worse "pull" and you will notice how dust just clings to the surface. A Carbon brush, on the other hand, releases the static and the record lets go of the dust - beautiful to behold!
Project Carbon Brush
Fingerprints or other contaminents - you may have picked up some used LPs and think its time for a scrubbing. If you have a deep pocket or are an avid record collector you might consider a record cleaning machine. These are specially designed to deep clean records professionally and even a brand new record benefits from being washed to remove debris left behind in manufacture! There are simple devices like SpinClean that manually washes the record and work quite well. The rule is - don't spay on aftermarket fluids to clean records. Fluids mix with the dust on the surface to create mud, and when it dries the record will crackle and pop like never before. When you use fluids, you submerge, scrub away dirt, dry (using a soft towel) and play immediately, one at a time.