CD Cleaning Fluid

One of my CDs has developed a stuttering effect when I play a particular track (6). I have a CD cleaning device but no fluid. What does the panel recommend? The Long River has lots of solutions and prices! Isopropyl alcohol is very cheap compared to some of the other fluids being advertised.

Thanks in advance


When I had CD’s & now with DVD’s, I use basic Tile & Window cleaning spray & a soft E cloth. Far too much BS & ‘opportunities’ around the market over disc cleaning, it ain’t magic, its just removing surface deposits.
If you have a stuttering track problem on one track & a basic damp cloth clean does fix it, it will invariably be damage or a pit print defect.

The original fluid that came with my JML branded CD/DVD cleaning kit smelt like alcohol, so I googled and found that it was most likely 1:1 water / isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) which is what I now use.
Alternatively, Brasso works well for isolated spots. (not using the machine)

Small spot of washing up liquid with tepid water. Rinse off with tepid water. Gently dry off using a soft lint free cloth used radially.
No need to put alcohol anywhere near CDs.

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L’Art Du Son CD & DVD cleaner spray is what I use.
A quick smell and taste test confirms it as ionised water infused with a Fairydust concentrate.
Stubborn discs that don’t rip are put in the dishwasher.

Thanks everyone for your advice and time. It is much appreciated. I will have a go sorting out the recalcitrant CD tonight.

Cheers Steve2

@richarddane recommended Astonish glass and window cleaner as used by the factory to clean the finish on the amps etc. Its only a pound in some of the pound shops, i use it to clean cd,s…no good on bad scratches, but then i have tried a lot of recommendations. Normally end up with a re-purchase from the magpie shop if i like it.

The alcohol works as a cutting compound, removing scratches etc. which washing up liquid cannot do.
Alcohol should only be used for scratched (or other marks such as paint) CD’s, not dirty ones.

I have found optic lens wipes to be a great solution for cleaning CDs. The W5 Glasses Wipes from Lidl are especially good and are certainly worth every single penny of their .99 Pence asking price (pack of 50).

Hi Stephen. I have just cleaned the offending CD using the very same and on my return I shall see how successful I have been. Thanks for time regarding this.

Cheers, Steve2

If you have a scratch on a CD that’s causing problems the try Autosol scratch remover. It’s designed for use on metal and lacquered surfaces but also works a treat on many plastics and polycarbonates. Just make sure, whatever you do, NOT to use it on the silvered top side of a CD.

Are some CD drives particularly bad at reading imperfect discs? Nearly all the new music I buy is on used CDs and I can’t remember if I ever had one that my Unitiserve couldn’t read with no prior cleaning whatsoever.

The Core has a Teac slimline drive and does struggle…even on a few cd,s that looked perfect. I sent them to Naim to investigate, Flyn made CDR copies on a full fat drive because the Core could not handle?

I’ve only had 2 CDs out of at least a couple of thousand that had ripping issues on the Core that weren’t also present on other drives and other ripping software. Conversely, it has managed to rip error free a number of discs that caused problems elsewhere on other drives and ripping software, so I guess it varies from drive to drive and disc to disc.

Sorry…I beg to differ. Alcohol is not a cutting compound and will not work on scratches.
Products such as Brasso, T Cut and, as mentioned by Richard Dane, Autosol are cutting compounds i.e. mildly abrasive “pastes” which may polish out light scratches in plastics.

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Rubbing alcohol will act as a polish by “dissolving” the surface slightly and as such does “polish” (apparently) whereas washing up liquid most certainly does not.

I’ve had good luck with Mapleshade Mikrosmooth

All is good in the world of music or more precisely in my small corner. Using the Lidl lens wipe has worked wonders on my copy of Tasmin Little playing Arvo Part. Thanks once again for the time taken and advice given to resolve this issue for me.


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Well the very last thing you’d want to do is “slightly dissolve” the surface of the disc. That in all likelihood would render it un-readable.
Washing up liquid, as a de-greasing agent, will remove finger marks and most other soiling which may cause problems reading the disc.
A mildly abrasive compound of the types described earlier may polish out small scratches in the disc.
You’d certainly struggle to revive a disc with a dissolved surface whatever treatment you tried!!

I too find it hard to believe that alcohol would dissolve the surface of a CD. I believe they are made from polycarbonate, and having used a polycarbonate bottle to store alcohol in the past, I’m pleased to say that the bottle was unharmed.