A Site for Photographers by Photographers

Community > Forums > Nikon > Nikon Lenses and Optics > How to remove fungus from a...

Featured Equipment Deals

The Human Face of Climate Change Read More

The Human Face of Climate Change

Climate change is a topic that interests many activist photographers and Mathias Braschler and Monika Fischer, his wife and photographer partner, are no exception. They have created a compelling...

Latest Equipment Articles

Sony a6300-First Impressions Read More

Sony a6300-First Impressions

When Sony's invitation to spend a couple of days shooting with the new a6300 in Miami arrived via email, I didn't have to think twice before sending my RSVP. Announced in February and shipping this...

How to remove fungus from a lens !?

Juanjo Viagran , Jun 07, 2007; 12:08 a.m.

Hi, I have a lens with fungus, I took the glass with the fungus off the lens already but don't want to even touch it before I get some tips on how to remove fungus from a lens w/o damaging or scratching the glass. Also I'd like to know how do you clean your lenses? I have some Kodak lens cleaning paper which I use mostly dry or with a bit of alcohol but I wonder how others clean there lenses. Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket Thanks in advance. cheers Juanjo


Jerry Litynski , Jun 07, 2007; 12:12 a.m.

Let the lens sit in direct sunlight for several hours. The fungus grows in a dark, damp environment: sunshine usually kills it. (Unfortunately, if the fungus is into the glass, the lens is better off retired, and finding a replacement would be the most cost effective way to go.)

John Schroeder , Jun 07, 2007; 12:16 a.m.

If the fungus is between the elements then you need a very large hammer and an anvil. If it's growing on the outside of the lens you could use bleach on a q-tip. From the looks of the picture I would recommend the hammer method.

Michael Harris , Jun 07, 2007; 12:35 a.m.

NO!!!! If it's between the lens and it's an old lens that used Canada Balsem then look here:


It's very easy to clean and re-glue.

Michael Harris , Jun 07, 2007; 12:36 a.m.

Oops, I meant to say between the elements.

Juanjo Viagran , Jun 07, 2007; 12:57 a.m.

thanks a lot for the info... Here are some close ups pictures of the fungus, can't tell if is between the element of superficial. Anyway, I'll put the lens on the window to take few hours of sun, if that doesn't work to the oven at 350f... I'll let the hammer and anvil for last. Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Robert Hooper , Jun 07, 2007; 02:09 a.m.

It looks like you have a fairly advanced fungal growth. If it is on an accessible surface, you should clean it right away with a 100% cotton ball moistened with pure Methyl alcohol. Unfortunately it looks as though the metabolic bi-products of the mycelium growth may have etched into the lens surface. If so, the affected element will have to be replaced.

Placing the lens in the sun will only halt growth. Fungus spores are pretty robust. I was able to get a supply of cleaning liquid specially developed by Carl Zeiss for the removal of fungi, which at the same time is a disinfectant. Try contacting the folks at Carl Zeiss, Oberkochen. In the meantime, remove the fungus infection on your lens with methyl alcohol.

Michael Harris , Jun 07, 2007; 02:43 a.m.

Juanjo, that's look like a pretty news lens that probably doesn't use Canada Balsem to cement the elements together so the 350 degree oven won't work. First thing to do is remove the element and look closely at the surfaces to see if the fungus is on the surface.

There is a solvent to separate them so let me look that up before you go too far. In any event that rear element can be removed using the slots you see in your picture. I'll also get a link for the tool you need for that. Give me a sec to look up the solvent.

Michael Harris , Jun 07, 2007; 02:59 a.m.

Still looking but while I'm doing that look to see what surface the fungus is on.

Back to top

Notify me of Responses