How to Clean a Laptop CD Lens

By Shelley Marie

Updated February 10, 2017

Air pollution and dust can affect a CD lens causing read errors.
i DVD drive laser closeup image by .shock from

Laptop CD lenses use a laser to read discs in the optical drive. When the lens becomes dusty or dirty, it can cause disc reading errors and skipping. CD and DVD ROM cleaning kits are available at most retail stores and include soft brushes to remove loose dust and debris from the lens. For an extremely dirty lens, manual cleaning may be necessary. Clean a laptop CD lens regularly to maintain its performance.

Turn on the laptop and open the disc drive.

Insert the lens cleaning disc into the disc drive. Close the drive tray and play the disc.

Follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer to clean the lens.

Open the disc tray and remove the disc. Locate the lens. Use a flashlight if necessary to see inside the drive.

Dampen a cotton swab with isopropyl alcohol. Squeeze out any excess alcohol.

Wipe the lens gently with the cotton swab to remove film or residue.

Remove the cleaning disc and test the results with a different CD.

Items you will need

  • Lens cleaning kit

  • CD (optional)

  • Flashlight (optional)

  • Cotton swab

  • Isopropyl alcohol