A person’s guitar is a special thing that most people want to treasure, maintain well and keep clean, even a guitar for beginners needs to be kept in the best possible condition to ensure it easier to play and lasts. But when using a guitar, it’s bound to get dirty, so it needs a good regular cleaning.
These five easy steps will help you properly clean your guitar:
Cleaning the strings
By cleaning your guitar strings before each playing session you will prevent the buildup of grime and dirt. When using the guitar small pieces of skin, bits of hair and the sweat from the hands and the oil from your fingers combine and coat the strings. This dirt builds up over time and will cause the strings to sound old and worn, reducing the quality and tone of your music and making it harder to get the sounds you want to produce.
One of the best cleaners is a chamois cloth as its soft enough so it will not damage the strings, but will quickly polish them into a nice shine. Rub the strings up and down the whole length until no more dirt appears on the cloth
- Cleaning the Guitar Body
Most guitars are made using wood which gives them a beautiful sound as well as looking nice. In order to preserve the finish on the wood, they should be kept dust free and polished as often as practical, especially if it’s not kept in a guitar case.
Take off the strings and clean the whole body using a suede or microfiber cloth to clean off any dirt or grime. Once your guitar is clean, apply a suitable guitar cleaner followed by a guitar polish. This will restore its original luster and help prevent dirt from sticking to it until the next time you clean it
- Cleaning the Fretboard
While the strings are off your guitar, it’s a good opportunity to properly clean the fretboard. If you have a fretboard made of rosewood or ebony it’s best cleaned using a fine steel wool to remove any stubborn dirt, then apply a good quality guitar oil such as lemon oil to re-hydrate and seal it. If you have a fretboard made of maple then its best cleaned with a damp cloth before using the guitar oil. It’s always good to keep a guitar for beginners clean and fresh to make playing easier and more enjoyable
- Cleaning The Hardware
When cleaning your guitar do not forget to carefully clean the tuning pegs or keys.
- Electric Guitar Cleaning
An electric guitar requires a bit more cleaning, but is not difficult, use a dust cloth and some Q-tips. Don’t use water on the electrics. Any chrome areas should not be cleaned with an abrasive as this may damage the hardware as the coating can be rubbed off if you’re too aggressive
Whether you have a guitar for beginners or a collectors guitar from the fifties or before you still need to take care of it, so it retains its value, is easy to play and will last a long time. Start by careful cleaning using a soft cloth and finishing with a high quantity guitar polish.