Are you desperate because your guitar pedals produce awful, scratchy, crackling noise? Have you already considered throwing them away? No, do not fall into extremes. Instead, you should better learn some ways to clean guitar pedals. After all, the dirty pots can be to blame for those noisy sound effects. Luckily, you can get the pedals back into full operating order once again as you clean them. So, here are the tips on how to get the job done.
Why bother about cleaning the guitar pedal?
For a clean tone
You should not look at the condition of your electric devices only if you are a fan of those scratchy noises coming from your guitar pedal. Otherwise, you should be aware that dust and dirt inside the pot can give your pedals that disgusting, noisy, crackling sound. So, if you want to avoid sound issues, it’s better to set aside some time for cleaning.
For a smooth operation of all knobs and buttons
Do you feel like something stops you from turning the knobs? Can’t you press the button? Ooops, it seems that the guitar pedal has gone badly dirty.
For proper work of a power source
Have you noticed that the power source started to come off? Perhaps the port is clogged with dirt and dust, so it no longer holds the cable.
For the aesthetic look
Maintaining guitar effects pedals is also a good investment in their neat look. However, if you do not store, transport, and clean them properly, you may soon figure out that they have lost their appealing design.
Should you disassemble the pedal for cleaning?
It all depends on how thoroughly you want to clean the pedal. If you want to remove the dust from the exterior elements only, then you can skip this step. But to access pots and circuit boards, you will have to take the pedal apart.
How to take care of a guitar pedals
Start with inspecting the device for dust and dirt. If you see dirt particles that should be removed from the pedal, use compressed air first. It will prevent dust from traveling from outside to the inside of the pedal. You may use a rag moistened with dish soap to do away with grime and dirt accumulated on the outer part of the pedal. Some people also use a mix of water and vinegar.
As dust and grime tend to accumulate in the pedal’s contacts and potentiometers, you should also clean them. To thoroughly clean these components, you will need to use special cleansing formulas.
It’s important to note that you should never use personal or household lubricants to remove dirt from guitar pedals. As an alternative, use spray cleaners designed for switches and potentiometers.
Every pot has a small opening, which lets you spray the cleaner inside to loosen the dirt. As you spray the lubricant, it is advised to turn the knobs back and forth to lose the dirt and restore the contacts. The barrels and tips should be treated the same way.