If your iPhone photos seem to be decreasing in quality it could be because the camera lens is dirty. It’s very easy to clean your iPhone camera lens and as a result you’ll take much better pictures.
Since the iPhone camera sits flush to the back of your phone, it’s super easy to pick up dirt and debris. Even the tiniest smudge of your fingerprint can impact photo quality. You may even see dust, tiny hairs or smudges on the lens with the naked eye.
Your phone’s camera lens is going to get dirty no matter what. There are just too many opportunities for oily fingers to come into contact with the lens. Oil helps dust and debris better stick to the surface—it’s not a pretty picture!
Allow us to explain how to clean your iPhone camera lens at home, and what to do if basic cleaning methods don’t have an impact on picture quality.
Apple suggests using a lint-free cloth to clean all iPhone surfaces, especially the camera lens. Breathing on the phone can provide just a hint of helpful moisture. Use your cloth to make small circles with soft pressure. Don’t forget to clean the flash near the lens as well. If the flash gets smudged up and dirty it will diminish brightness quality.
If you decide to use dust-off for electronics to remove all of the tiny dust particles, do so with extreme caution. You want to hold the nozzle a good foot (at least) from your device, especially when you first start to use it. Otherwise, the compressed air could release with enough force to push dust particles into the camera lens, creating scratches.
If you start reading around online you might find that professional photographers use a dab of alcohol to clean camera lenses. Refrain from trying this trick at home! Never use an ammonia-based solvent or any other harsh liquid cleaning agent on your phone.
Don’t use Kleenex or toilet paper thinking it’s the softest material you have on hand. These thin paper products shed, creating more dust on your camera lens. Plus, while Kleenex may feel soft, it is actually a rough texture that can scratch your lens.
If thoroughly cleaning the outside of your camera lens does nothing for picture quality, or you can still see dirt there, it’s very possible dust is trapped inside of the camera lens. This is much trickier to clean because it involves taking your phone apart in order to access the lens.
If dirt is trapped inside of the camera lens, your best bet is to bring your phone into a professional unless you frequently take phones apart and put them back together. The iPhone is a tricky machine when you start taking it apart to access internal components.
A professional can safely and quickly access fragile components of your phone, removing all signs of dirt and debris without the same risks for damage. To access the camera lens, the entire phone has to be taken apart, which is a risky task to take on. People often try this at home, create further damage to the device and then end up at one of our stores. We recommend coming to us from the get-go, you’ll save time, money and stress by doing so.
For anyone still curious, the overall process goes as follows:
- In order to do it at home, if you dare, you will need the right tools. These include a tiny screwdriver and a plastic case remover, both of which can be purchased in special Apple repair kits.
- Unscrew the two screws located on the bottom of your phone, on either sides of the charging port.
- Attach suction cup/plastic case remover to phone in order to pry up the screen.
- Once lifted, you’ll see a metal plate secured in place by three screws located at the top right corner of the phone. Once all 3 screws are out, the metal plate pops up automatically. This allows you to remove the entire screen.
- From there you can access the back camera by lifting up on the little metal plate beneath. Don’t pull this plate off or pull it too far back. You could then use electronic Dust-Off (at a safe distance back) to dislodge trapped dirt and debris. Don’t touch the tiny space with your fingers or you’ll make the problem worse by spreading oils around.
If cleaning both the front and inside of your screen does not remove the appearance of dust and dirt it could be because you have scratches on the screen. It may be possible to replace the actual screen so that it is scratch free.
Visit My Broken Phone for fast, affordable repairs. We will clean your iPhone camera lens on the spot!