In general, flashlights are highly susceptible to corrosions and rusts, which may ruin its entire look and you, will feel reluctant to carry it everywhere. However, if you follow a series of steps to take care of flashlight then overtime you can prevent these damages. If you have just gotten your flashlight or have been using it since long, you need to take extreme care of it to increase its life as long as the LED is intact. Generally, some LED’s for instance have the capacity to emit 50,000 hours of light, but many people ended up having a corroded body long before its LED dies. As per a rough estimate, 50,000 hours refers to a continuous use of 5.5 years constantly, so you can imagine as how many of us have managed to save our lights for such a long period.
There must be some steps, measures when followed can lead to prevention from such damages, and once again, your flashlight starts to appear as new.
It is very simple to take care of a flashlight and as a user; it is very significant to ensure that it provides the best performance. There are four basic steps that can help to make your flashlight last longer and those are cleaning periodically, replacing, protecting and enough timely lubricating. If all of these steps are followed for at least twice a year, you will always be equipped with a working flashlight. However, you have to clean it more often if you are in sand, mud, oil or any other thing that can stick in the threads.
Steps to Follow To Take Care of Your Flashlight
Cleaning the flashlight
- Exterior: At first, simply clean off the mud, dirt or any grime from the flashlight’s exterior. You can use alcoholic pads or any grease removing cleanser with the help of a lint free fabric to wipe off the exterior, however, flashlights that have many knurling, then a bristle brush alike is recommended. The final phase in cleaning the outer area of the flashlight is cleaning of the lens, and if your lens is scratch resistant, then a single wipe will make it appear completely new. It is very essential to keep your lens clean and scratch free as this is the place where the light passes from and any kind of hindrance can hamper the performance of your flashlight.
- Interior& battery contacts: Once you have successfully cleaned up the outside area and wiped away all the dirt, then you must take out the light apart. Remove the batteries and clean them using the same tools that have been mentioned above. Since, you are in the phase of maintenance of the flashlight, it is better to check whether the springs are functioning properly or not. Some of the other convenient tools are Q-tips, as they make it easier to reach between the threads and getting into the battery tube, however you can use alcoholic pad for this purpose too. Further, if you are using alcoholic pads or cotton swabs, then make sure to remove the fibers from the threads if any. Once you wipe off all the dust, give your thread a good wipe to take off any old grease. By this time, you have completely cleaned up your flashlight. However, if you notice some additional ongoing corrosion on the contacts, then it is recommended to upgrade your cleaner to DeoxIT that is particularly used for cleaning and enhancement of electrical contacts.
Replacement/protection of parts
- Check O-Rings: O-Rings are amongst themost essential but fragile part of your flashlight. They keep mud, dust and water away from your light, as they make the light waterproof; hence, their timely maintenance is very crucial for their good condition. It is better that you must check that our O-Ring hasn’t dried out or cracked, and if you find it to be with lots of scratches or in an imperfect condition, then it is the right time to replace it. If you notice a need for replacement of O-Ring, then once after removing the old one, you can get the identical online or at Home Depot. However, if it only seems dry, you can continue to use it further after putting on some O-Ring lube on them.
- DeoxIT Gold for cleaning of contacts: Once you have completely cleaned of your flashlight from inside as well outside, it is necessary to make sure your light is well protected from being corroded over time. This step is not compulsory to perform, however, once your flashlight is corroded, its performance will deteriorate and you will be spending more time on its cleaning later on. DeoxITGold is a specially designed cleaning material helping to enhance, protect, and condition the contacts.
Lubrication of the flashlight
- Lubing the flashlight: it is an essential step that ensures that the process of unscrewing your flashlight goes smoothly and the O-Ring isn’t dried out. Nyogel, Nano-oil and Krytox are some of the best available lubes in the market, or one of our preferred brands is Super Lube. You may choose the lube as per your preference since every O-Ring is made differently; however, Super Lube works for many lights.
- How to lube it: Now let us discuss as how to lube your flashlight. At first, you must remember to cover the surface area only and not to flood it with oil. You can start with the O-Ring by trying to putting on some grease behind it to ensure we get the complete surface. Next, put the little bit of lube on the outer area of the O-Ring. However, if you can take off the O-Ring out completely and cover it with grease, it will be a better option, but will consume more time. Next, pick up the Super Lube or any other lube you are using and simply rub it over the threads, as your aim is only to get a single layer on the surface of these threads. Once you have greased it enough, you can screw back the parts and move it back and forth to evenly distribute it.
If you repeat all these maintenance activities at least twice a year, you will have a perfect-working flashlight at your disposal. Isn’t that amazing? All it needs is a little maintenance.