Looking for tips on how to clean VR headsets? You have come to the right place. Our VR headset cleaning guide will teach you the dos and don’ts of cleaning your VR headsets, including how to clean your VR glasses without damaging them.
Video games have always felt like a thing of the future, but virtual reality somehow takes things even further. There are several different VR headsets for anyone looking to get into VR gaming, but there are a few that stand out among the best. Regardless of which headset you have, it will be important to keep it clean and disinfected. After all, you will be wearing it on your face for hours at a time.
If you’re looking for more tips to get the most out of your VR headsets, we’ve got tons of guides to help you, including how to build a PC for VR and how to set up your room for VR. If you are battling motion sickness in VR, we also have a guide to help you mitigate these symptoms.
Why clean your VR headset?
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), scientists have discovered that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that leads to COVID-19, “can be detected in aerosols for up to three hours” and in plastic for up to 72 hours. . The flu virus can live the same amount of time and a runny nose will quickly end a virtual reality session.
Health experts recommend washing your hands before touching your face, so the same logic should be applied to your virtual reality headsets, which remain on your face. It will be easier to disconnect, disassociate and venture to distant virtual worlds with the confidence that a clean virtual reality headset offers.
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Consult the manufacturer’s instructions.
Before you begin, it is important to verify any necessary information that may be specific to your headset. Vive, Oculus, and Index have their own official pages that list important warnings. Companies also list important details to know, such as how to properly store equipment.
Often useful information can be found on how to properly remove the face pad from your particular headset. It is important to check to make sure nothing is damaged during the sanitation process.
Here are some general tips, preventative measures, and other actions you can take to keep your VR equipment safe and clean:
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1. Always wash your hands before using your VR headset
This sounds simple, but running to wash your hands isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when most think of playing a virtual reality game. It should be like that!
Always wash your hands before using any VR equipment. Apply some hand sanitizer after your hands are completely dry just in case. Being clean before playing is crucial, whether it’s just you or a whole group of friends.
2. Clean surfaces frequently
It is important to clean equipment before use, but it is also a good idea to clean surfaces regularly. And this doesn’t just apply to your headphones and controllers.
Be sure to regularly clean the surrounding surfaces. It’s one thing to have dust or dirt on the floor somewhere. Another very different thing is to wear it on your face.
Be sure to follow specific instructions for your TV / monitor area, along with any other furniture you are cleaning. Headphone stands and charging stands are a natural area for germs to accumulate, so don’t forget to clean these surfaces regularly, too. These can be easy to miss, especially if they are hidden or in another room.
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3. Create a routine
The CDC recommends routine cleaning for highly interacting surfaces. Areas with more people passing and / or interactions may need to be cleaned more frequently. This will vary for everyone.
If your headphones and controllers are in a low-traffic location in your living space, you may not need to clean them frequently. If they are next to the TV in the living room, you may want to consider cleaning the area for a few minutes every day.
Consider your environment and your needs, and then work to create a routine to keep everything clean.
4. Choose between your health or your headphones.
Alcohol-based cleaning products appear to be more effective and recommended against COVID-19, but that has a major drawback. Most equipment manufacturers specifically state that they should not use alcohol-based cleaning products on VR equipment. The reason often given is that alcohol can dissolve some plastics in the long term, leading to durability and discoloration issues.
That’s your decision, but it may be worth the risk in the long run, especially since you may end up upgrading to a newer and better VR headset before noticeable damage occurs. It’s a risk, but it’s certainly worth considering.
5. Always use a microfiber cloth to clean the lenses.
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It may be tempting to grab a napkin or use your shirt to quickly wipe up stains, but try to resist the urge. The lenses of virtual reality headsets are very sensitive and can be scratched or damaged if they come in contact with abrasive surfaces or cleaners.
6. Compressed air can help with dust
A can of compressed air can help with dust stuck in hard-to-reach places. It is also useful to prevent dirt and dust from accumulating. Keep the end of the can several inches away and avoid pointing directly at the lens; you don’t want to risk blowing anything abrasive into or onto the lenses. Spray it in shorter bursts and watch closely where it blows.
It’s easy to give up important cleansing rituals, especially when you’re tired or running late. Try to resist the urge to leave the controllers on the ground and the cables lying everywhere.
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Staying organized is an important part of keeping things clean and sanitized. However, it is easy to have a cluttered VR area because we all lose track of time while playing games. Immersion is certainly a bonus for VR gaming, but it also makes it easy to lose track of time.
An easy fix is a vibrating cell phone alarm or a nearby stove timer. It’s never fun to stop, but it’s best to pack it up at a good time so everything is clean and put away for another time.
Playing in virtual reality is exciting and there is no gaming experience like this. It is important to do your best to keep the good times, rather than your nose or anything else.
Disclaimer: This is not medical advice. This guide should not override the protocols that your institution or physician may already have in place. This is a guide compiled from various sources that you may find helpful.
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