Knowledge Base
Answers to Your Questions about Radio and Wireless Voice Communications

Cleaning Gold Plated Contacts

01 January 1970

Cleaning the battery or earpiece connectors on your radio is easy but should be done with care.

Many connectors are gold plated. This plating is thin and can be easily damaged, once damaged the underlying metal can corrode. Corrosion is harder or impossible to repair so clean the terminals carefully.

Dirt or grease on these connectors is the usual problem. Grease can be removed using a solvent and polished off using nothing more abrasive than plain writing/ copier paper.

The best solvent to use is alcohol. This is commonly available as Methylated Spirits or IPA (isopropyl alcohol). Wet a piece of writing paper with the alcohol and polish the terminals gently drying with a dry piece of paper.

  • DO use IPA or Meths as a solvent.
  • DO use plain paper as the abrasive.
  • Don't be tempted to use drinking alcohol, sugars and salts in these will cause corrosion.
  • Do not use files, sandpaper or other metal tools to clean the terminals.
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