How to Clean Drum Cymbals

We should always be aware of our instruments and their cleanliness. Most people think there is no point in cleaning your pieces of equipment which can lead to various issues.

Drum Cymbals especially need a lot of care. If you do not clean them often, they may change color, get rust, and even result in cracking of the cymbal. That is why it is so important to clean them regularly.

Also Read: How To Set Up A Drum Set

Why You Should Clean Your Drum Cymbals

Cymbals need a lot of care. They are highly prone to fingerprints and smudges. They also tend to get rusty over time. Good cymbals are pretty hard to find. You have to determine your requirements and find the cymbals that best fit them. But, you wouldn’t want your cymbals to get dirty or have spots that make them look bad. 

Not only that, the alloy that they are made of can change color with time if they aren’t cleaned properly often. They also tend to crack because of poor cymbal care which can ruin their sound and can lower the longevity of them.

That’s why it is especially important to clean them as often as you can and be aware that they aren’t getting any fingerprints or smudges in them.

What to Use to Clean Drum Cymbals

To clean Drum Cymbals, you need to use a couple of different things. First, you’ll need a microfiber cloth. Then you also need some Cymbal Cleaner. They are some specific types of cleaner that are made to clean symbols.

The reason why they need them is that cymbals are made with materials that can’t be cleaned without specified cleaners. It is also not at all recommended to use any type of household cleaners as they can severely damage the cymbals and discolor them. It can affect their longevity directly. So, to be safe, you should use Cymbal Cleaners. Some products are listed below:

How to Clean Drum Cymbals

How to Clean Drum Cymbals

How to Clean Drum Cymbals

These are some of the highest-rated cleaners which are used among many professional drummers for cleaning their cymbals. So, it is recommended to get any of these.

Clean Your Cymbals The Right Way

Now, we’ll show you how to clean your drum cymbals correctly. There are 2 steps to cleaning a cymbal. First is the Cleaning part, and then next is the polishing part. So, let’s get right into the process.

Cleaning your Cymbals

To clean your cymbals properly, you need to follow the steps given:

  • First, take a microfiber cloth and then thoroughly clean all the fingerprints and oils.
  • Clean any dirt or splits visible.
  • Make sure to not touch the cymbal while you’re cleaning with your bare hands. You can use a glove if you want
  • Clean the edges of the cymbal thoroughly as those parts tend to have the most amount of fingerprints and oil to them

This is how you should be cleaning your cymbal and prepping for polishing it. When you’re done with the cleaning part, make sure you have no smudges or anything left over. Then you can go to the next step.

Polishing your Cymbals

Polishing is an important part when cleaning your cymbal, It helps secure the cymbal so that no rust can occur and also makes it look shiny and brand new. While it is recommended to clean your cymbal as often as you like, it is not however the case with polishing your cymbals. Polishing your cymbals too often can result in wearing the cymbal which ultimately will affect the tune of the cymbal.

Nonetheless, to polish your cymbals, you need to look at the following steps:

  • First, take a clean microfiber cloth
  • Then put some cymbal cleaner on the cymbal, a thin coat of it is enough for it.
  • Then gently rub it across the cymbal with the microfiber cloth creating a thin coating across the cymbal.
  • Make sure you coat the whole cymbal and leave no inconsistency in any of its parts.
  • After that, you’ll need another clean microfiber cloth. With that, you’ll rub away the cymbal cleaner gently. Make sure you clean off all the cleaner or else it can damage the cymbal.

This is how you’ll need to clean your cymbal to get the most optimal results and to also avoid any mishaps that may occur to your drum cymbal.

How Often Should You Clean Your Cymbal?

A lot of people cannot wrap their heads around how much or how often they should clean their instruments. Well, there are pretty easy instructions you can follow to know when to clean your cymbals and if you’re doing it too often or not.

Cleaning your cymbal with a microfiber cloth is simple and it won’t affect the durability or longevity of your cymbal. So, if you use your drums consistently for practice or other reasons, you can clean them once every week.

Fingerprints don’t look pretty on them, so it’s better to clean them off with a microfiber cloth whenever you feel like there’s a noticeable amount of it.

Also, you should be concerned about using cymbal cleaners as they tend to wear out the cymbal if your use them too much. We would suggest using them 3-4 times a year on the max. This will assure proper protection and cleanliness for your cymbals and also helps them in their longevity.


It is important to keep your instruments with care. Drum cymbals are no exception to that part. With proper care and use, you can get the most out of your cymbal and have it sound good for a long period.

We hope this comprehensive guide on how to clean drum cymbals will help you to take care of your cymbals a little better. So, clean your cymbals properly and happy drumming!

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