Friday, March 09, 2012


A few weeks ago I was attempting to use my digital voltmeter to get the current draw reading of one of the boats battery monitors. Somehow I managed to blow the meter's internal fuse. When I opened the meter case up I notice some corrosion on the battery contacts. Looks like it's time to do a little electronic maintenance. For cleaning small electrical contacts on board BIANKA and at home I like to use  nylon bristled  a Connector Cleaning Brush 3-6 mm x 20 mm


The nylon bristle  cleaning brushes are durable and reusable. In a pinch I will also use a cotton Q tip. But, I prefer these brushes for their durability, re usability and the fact that they can get into spaces that a Q-tip can't because of it's size.  The brushes are tapered and they do not shed fibers like a cotton Q-Tip can:

The scrubbing action of the nylon brushes also allow for better cleaning in tighter spaces:

You can see the difference in the first pass with the brush on the contact on the left in the photo below:

The tapered design also allows you to give other connectors and contacts a good scrubbing and cleaning. Like the meter's test cable input jacks:

The Connector Cleaning Brush can also clean hard to reach computer cable connector pins that would be difficult to clean with Q-tips:

In short it's the right tool for the right job. With boats having more devices on board with more and more connectors it's always a good idea to have a few of these Connector Cleaning Brushes on board along with some denatured alcohol to use as a solvent to clean contacts and connectors.


She:Kon said...

One other thing I've found handy for cleaning contacts is a pencil eraser.

Capt. Mike said...

Good tip. A clean pencil eraser can also work well on various contacts. But, like the cotton swab it can't reach into some of the smaller connectors as well as one of these tapered brushes can.