How to Clean a Tripod

Your tripod is the most trustworthy tool in your arsenal. Who else would you depend on with your expensive camera and lens while you stand several feet away? But sadly enough, that same trustworthy tool is overlooked when it comes to maintenance. We take care of our cameras and lenses. But what about the three legged thingy? This short tutorial by Troy Nikolic demonstrates how to clean your tripod and keep it in sparkling condition:

Over time, dirt and grime can get inside of your tripod—areas like the interlocked parts of the legs and inside the ball head. It’s imperative that your cleaning process take care of all the hidden dirt and grime.

What You Need

  • a soft toothbrush
  • water
  • silicone based lubricant

1. Break down every piece of your tripod

how to clean a tripod

Pull out each part of the legs, all of the screws, and even the leg tabs.

tips to clean your tripod

Lay all the components down in a methodical arrangement in front of you, preferably on a bed sheet or something similar. This is to ensure that everything is in front of you and nothing gets misplaced.

2. Start the cleaning process

tips on cleaning your tripod

Start the cleaning process by dipping your soft brush in water and rubbing off the dirt. Take extra care to clean the stubborn dirt in the screw threads and the inside of the hollow shafts.

3. Lubricate the tripod legs

silicone based lubricant for tripod cleaning

Spray each of the tripod leg parts with silicone lubricant—just a small dab, not too much.

cleaning your tripod

Then take a rag to give it a good swipe down to ensure that any remaining dirt is removed from the piece.

4. Put everything back together

Putting everything back together correctly is the critical part. Make sure every piece goes back to where it belongs. Take special care about the tabs; they create resistance in the legs. If they’re out of place you’ll have problems extending or collapsing the legs.

And there you have it! Keeping your tripod clean should keep it in good working order.

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2 responses to “How to Clean a Tripod”

  1. Kathy says:

    I did clean mine using brake cleaner spray! Then lubricating with some silicone oil! Works great! Thank you for the tips!

  2. Mary says:

    I live at the beach and my tripod definitely needs cleaning now.
    Thanks for these helpful tips.

    That said, I had an old school aluminum tripod from the 70’s that was so much easier to use and keep clean. Unfortunately lost it

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