Sanitizing Your Wind Instrument
Welcome to Amro Music. Today we're going to be talking about sanitizing your instrument.
If you play a wind instrument in band or orchestra, you should know that it's important to keep all of your gear sanitized. This is especially true if you've been sick or been around someone who is sick. That is also a great time to get new cleaning brushes, swabs, and polishing cloths.
So, go ahead and clean your instrument following the steps in one of the cleaning videos we have linked below.
Once you've followed the steps from the videos above, you're ready to sanitize your instrument.
Sanitize your workspace with an appropriate disinfectant and wash your hands with soap and hot water before we get started.
Sterilizing Your Mouthpiece
Let's start with mouthpieces. There are a lot of different materials that your instrument or mouthpiece can be made of, and this can change the product that you should use to sterilize it.
Metal Brass / Flute Headjoints / Hard Rubber
For metal brass mouthpieces, flute head joints, and hard rubber mouthpieces, we recommend using 90% isopropyl alcohol in a spray bottle. Spray down the entire mouthpiece and let the alcohol evaporate off. Then rinse it off with water. If the water is too hot or the mouthpiece isn't rinsed off, it may discolor a hard rubber mouthpiece.
For any plastic mouthpieces like beginner clarinet and saxophone, we'd recommend using steri-spray, since alcohol can make a plastic brittle or discolor. Spray down the entire mouthpiece and let it air dry. Then rinse it off with water.
Sanitizing the Body
Now, for the body of your instrument.
Metal / Lacquer
For any metal or lacquer finishes like a silver trumpet or a lacquered brass trombone, we recommend spraying down the instrument with 90% alcohol and letting it evaporate off completely. Once the alcohol is evaporated, you can repolish your instrument and set it aside while you sterilize the case. For more information on flushing and cleaning the interior tubing, please follow the link for your instrument below.
Wood / Plastic
For wooden or plastic instruments, we recommend using a clean pull through swab that has been lightly sprayed with steri-spray. Pull the swab through each joint of the instrument. Be mindful that, over time, doing this could dry out a wooden instrument and it may need to be re-oiled with bore oil. Using a clean polishing cloth with a bit of 90% alcohol straight on it, wipe off all the metal keys making sure not to get any at all on the wood, plastic, or pads of the instrument.
Sanitizing Your Instrument's Accessories
If you play a reed instrument, we recommend using steri-spray on your reeds. When you're done playing them, spray both sides of the reed. Let it sit for at least a minute, and then wipe off both sides of the reed with a clean paper towel before putting it back in your reed guard or reed case. If you've been sick recently, it's probably best to get some new reeds.
As for your instrument's case and handles, we recommend using 90% alcohol, spraying down the entire case (interior and exterior), and letting it air dry for the best results.
Following these tips and the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control, such as washing your hands often and thoroughly and sneezing and coughing into your elbow, should go a long way and keeping you healthy and playing your instrument. Let us know if you have any other questions. That's all for now, have a musical day!