In times of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s extremely important to ensure proper hygiene of all your belongings, even your VR headset. You never know where the dangerous viruses are lurking in your home. Moreover, it’s not a great idea to wear your VR headset without sanitizing it every day; imagine the amount of dust, sweat and microorganisms that you collect on the VR headset now and then. Therefore, to ensure your VR headset doesn’t become a hotbed for bacteria and viruses, we’ve put together a guide on how to clean a VR headset the “right way.” This is the first part of our series “Clean Your VR.” Read further to know more.
Why You Need to Clean Your VR Headset
As already mentioned above, your VR headset can become a breeding place for bacteria, viruses, dust, dirt and a lot more. Therefore, you need to clean it regularly and ensure it is sanitized the right way. Let’s quickly look at what all you need to combat on your VR headset.
1. Things You Can See and Feel
Macroscopic material such as salt from your sweat, oily secretions known as sebum, dead skin cells, hair follicles, dust, makeup, and so on, can enter into different parts of your VR headset and get deposited. Common areas where you can find such macroscopic material are the lenses of your VR headset, nose guard and facial interface and foam.
2. Things You Cannot See and Feel
Microscopic organisms such as bacteria, fungus, protozoa, and viruses love to feed on the macroscopic material mentioned in the previous point. These microscopic organisms can enter your ear, nose and throat (ENT) tract and create havoc, leading to allergies, cold, fever and so on.
Therefore, to prevent both macroscopic and microscopic material and organisms from entering your VR headset or making it their breeding home, it’s important to maintain its hygiene on a regular basis. Now that you know why you must clean your VR headset regularly, let’s look at how to clean a VR headset.
How to Clean a VR Headset – Tried and Tested Methods
Well, you must be wondering why we decided to write a guide on how to clean a VR headset and what’s the big deal. Don’t worry; cleaning your VR headset is no rocket science. It’s just that VR headsets are expensive gadgets and require extra care.
You can clean your VR headset by simply wiping off the macroscopic material and washing your hands with soap once you are done. Please note that you must wash your hand immediately after cleaning the VR headset since there is a high chance of contact with potential microscopic pathogens. You can follow the guidelines shared by CDC to wash your hands properly.
This is the simplest way to clean your VR headset. However, in the next section, we’ll tell you 5 things you must follow while cleaning your VR headset to ensure the safety of both yourself and your VR headset.
5 Important Things You Need to Know Before You Clean Your VR Headset
Ensure you follow these 8 vital things to keep yourself and your much-loved VR headset safe before you begin cleaning it.
1. Wear Rubber/Nitrile Gloves
To protect your hands from dirt, dust and harmful pathogens, ensure you wear rubber or synthetic nitrile gloves. But, even if you are wearing gloves, don’t forget to wash your hands after completing the cleaning job. Alternately, you can also disinfect your hands by rubbing a little alcohol on them.
2. Use Premium or Regular Disinfecting Wipes to Clean the Headset
If possible, buy premium disinfecting wipes and use them to clean the headset and lens. However, if you don’t have premium disinfecting wipes, you can also use regular disinfecting wipes to sanitize the VR headset. You can easily find regular disinfecting wipes online or in a pharmacy. However, while purchasing them, ensure they comprise at least 70% isopropyl alcohol. Per studies conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO), isopropyl alcohol can even kill the deadly novel coronavirus.
3. Don’t Spray Alcohol on the Wires
This is an important point. Avoid spraying alcohol directly on the wires. Instead, make use of a dry microfiber cloth to thoroughly clean the wires. If you are unable to remove dirt using the dry microfiber cloth alone, you can use a disinfectant wipe to complete the job.
4. Avoid Sharing Your VR Headset With Others
One way to avoid macroscopic and microscopic material to accumulate on your VR headset is to avoid sharing it with multiple people (even your family members). The more the people using the VR headset, the more exposure it will get to dirt, dust, sweat, grime and harmful microorganisms.
5. Don’t Forget to Clean the VR Accessories Too
This one’s a no-brainer. Cleaning your VR headset alone won’t do you any good. If you are an avid VR user and have plenty of VR accessories that you use on a daily basis, ensure you sanitize them as well. We own an Oculus Rift S VR headset and ensure we clean all the Oculus Rift S accessories every day.
Cleaning Your VR Headset – A Quick Recap of the Dos and Don’ts
Before we conclude this guide, let’s quickly look at the dos and don’ts of cleaning your VR headset again; if we’ve missed anything above, we’ll cover it here. So, don’t skip this section!
What You Should Do
– Use a microfiber/lint-free cloth to avoid scratching the VR lenses.
– Clean the headset gently. Avoid putting too much pressure.
– Avoid using the disinfectant wipes on the lenses.
– Buy a VR cover to protect the facial interface or purchase a completely new facial interface and foam replacement kit with a convenient to clean surface, such as polyurethane (PU) leather.
What You Should Not Do
– Don’t use harsh solvents or abrasives, such as acetone, alcohol, and so on. By using these harmful chemicals, you can damage different parts of your VR headset, especially those made of plastic.
– Don’t use a vacuum cleaner to clean the VR headset. You can do more harm than good by blowing air on the headset.