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A paper towel?


I clean wire that is stripped back before soldering or crimping and I do it by scraping with a knife blade.


I know that there is magic fluid sold for cleaning plugs and jacks, but once a connector is on the wire connectors are self cleaning when the contact surfaces move past each other or are forced together in the course of connecting.
 

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I really like the Caig Labs products. DeoxIT, in it's many formulations, is great for cleaning metal to metal contacts in cars, computers, stereos, etc.


I've seen it do wonders on the copper of some old (18 year +) NES games.


Their Pro Gold is good stuff too. Supposedly it's more of an enhancer than a cleaner, but it will clean slightly dirty surfaces...
 

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You clean your wires and connecors?


Why does the word anal suddenly come to mind...



I cut corroded wire back to clean copper, if it is in really bad shape I just replace it.


Same with cables with corroded connectors on them I simply replace it .
 

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I can't say that I believe it makes a difference, but Radioshack had the Caig stuff on sale for around 70% off last I checked. And their own brand was even cheaper. For that price I bought it. I notice that on the power cables alot of black (gray) comes off. Not so much on the RCAs, bananas and spades. Maybe something to do with the amount of current? Whether it makes a difference or not, I assume that whatever came off can't be good. I mean, unless it was the gold plating.
 

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Unless the corrosion is on one or both surfaces of the contact area it does no harm. This is true even of very low voltage/low current connections. Even dedicated cable cleaners do not go up on the roof periodically to clean the antenna down line or out to the wall to clean the cable entrance. Surely these cables and connectors are in the most hostile home environment. Likewise do you know anyone who treats the connections in their car?


To see this for your self, observing proper safety precautions, disconnect a receptacle or switch. Look at the exposed copper. Is it uniformly oxidized? Your doorbell and heater themastat are low voltage, milli-volts in the case of old thermostats, but corrosion is not often implicated when they don't work.


Again, short of significant erosion from exposure, even the world's worst designed connector, the RCA phono plug, is self cleaning in use, and ordinarily remains free of corrosion in the contact area.


There is a major exception however, contacts in potentiometers or older TV tuners, that may not be used for long periods or across the full range, can become both dirty and corroded. Cleaners can fix this. Relays and switches may also have this problem.


It isn't so much that cleaners don't work they do, or that protectants can't slow oxidation or deposit of airborn ick, but they they just are not needed most of the time.


I can though recommend one brand and that is ProGold , not the DeoxIT® GOLD GxL, mentioned above, but the real ProGold. You can use any leftover for fishing reels and bike chains. I've used it for several years on my bike and it is a great product.
 

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If you've got a snug gold on gold connection, where's the corrosion?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Like jacks (rca, optical, etc) that have been sitting there exposed to dust and other contaminates. We all know we have jacks on our receivers and amps tht we do not use for a long long time and every once in a while we have to use them and they seem very dusty and dirty. Or cables collecting dust in storage?
 

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Caig sells various kits ( http://store.caig.com/ ) of bundled products that can be useful around the home including audio. The prices aren't bad. That should address most of your concerns.
 
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