Adapter Maintenance and Cleaning Instructions
Clean and dust free interfaces of fiber optic connectors and adaptors are of utmost importance. The core of a single mode fiber just 8 microns, carries majority of it’s light. Any misalignment or blockage of this tiny aperture can result in high losses. Imagine what a speck of dust of say 10 micron do to the signal if it settles on the core.
The adapter split sleeve is the most critical component that needs to be kept clean. Always use clean connectors and keep the unused ports of the adapter capped by dust covers.
Cleaning of the treaded portions of the FC adapter may also be necessary to keep out the build up of dust inside the treads.
Always clean the connector before mating into an adapter.
Adapters with metallic sleeve have a tendency of dirt and oxide layer build up. Utmost care should be used to clean such adapters. They also require cleaning more frequently. We do not recommend use of metallic sleeve adapters for single mode applications in hot and humid environments like India and other tropical countries.
Cleaning should be done by using a fabric tipped cleaning wand moistened with reagent grade Iso Propyl alcohol. Push and pull the wand several times inside the adapter and follow it up by 3-4 shots of filtered compressed air from both ends.
Precautions need to be taken with regards to the quality of cleaning wand and compressed / canned air. Poor quality of wand (tissues may leave fibre of paper inside) or unfiltered air may end up contaminating the adapter.
Use only lab or reagent grade of Iso propyl alcohol with at-least 99% purity. Commercial IPA is often diluted using water and /or mineral oils.

It advisable to use spray type of alcohol dispensers to dampen the wand. In such manner debris from the wand will not flow back to the reservoir.

Caution: Optical power of 1 watt being transmitted through a 9 micron core can reach intensity of 30 giga watts /m2 , enough to damage the retina permanently. DO NOT LOOK INTO A CONNECTOR OR FIBER THAT IS LIVE.
Do not use any dry tissue or chemical including iso propyl alcohol on any connector live with laser power. Combustion or micro explosion can result causing grievous personal injury and can damage the connector permanently.