These devices are expensive. A good, professional pair of night visions could cost as much as $10,000, and if not properly taken care of, they could fast become useless. Even a very little defection in a part of the device can render the whole device useless or deficient.
There are many reasons why you might need night/thermal vision equipment. You can use them for many night vision activities including camping, fishing, nature watching, home defense, and hunting amongst others. Thermal image monoculars, for example, can be used for night or early morning hunting. They are very efficient even in total darkness and they can see through smokes and fogs.
Steps you can take to maintain excellent performance
Avoid bright lights
Just as extremely bright lights are enemies to the eyes, so also it is for night vision equipment. These devices are made of optics specially designed to work in environments with no to very little light. Exposure then to bright or direct light can cause permanent damage to them.
Moreover, once they are damaged due to exposure to extreme lighting, the cost of repair is often high and not covered by warranty.
Keep the objective lens safe
The objective lenses are located furthest away from the eyepiece. It is advisable to never touch these lenses with bare hands even if you want to clean them. This is because they are very sensitive and have a special coating that can easily be damaged. Just like the ozone layer prevents the earth from the direct rays of the sun, these coatings prevent the objective lenses from light. The oil and the dead skin cells present on your fingers can dissolve these special coatings, leaving your lenses less effective from being damaged by bright light.
Also, you should make sure that the lens covers are always on when you are not using the device or when they are in storage.
Never take it apart
Unless you are a professional who is working on replacing a damaged part of the optic device, it is advisable to never take it apart the equipment. Night vision equipment is very fragile, complicated, and expensive. It is so fragile that organizations that use the device have a special department that handles the repair.
If your night vision device stops working for any reason, it is advisable to contact the manufacturer or a professional for the repair
Use the right battery voltage
Every night vision device comes with a recommended battery power usage. It is advisable to stick to this recommendation if you want your device to have a long lifespan.
Also, it is important not to leave the battery in the device when the device is not in use. Store the device in a dry place. And when you need to change or insert the battery, be sure to do so in an environment with very low humidity. There are special storage bags for batteries, such as the Thyrm CellVault Battery Storage, which will ensure that your batteries are kept dry for when you would need them
Keep your equipment away from humid condition
One of the things that spoil electronics faster is water. Abstaining from using your night vision equipment in a humid environment can do good to prevent it from early damage.
However, some night vision equipment is designed to be water-resistant. Even then, it is advisable to use your night vision device in the best environmental condition possible.
It is important to never assume that your device is water-resistant, but read the manual that comes with your device to know how much humidity it can take.
Treat your night vision equipment nicely
Although night vision equipment are not a child, they are however fragile and delicate and should not be treated carelessly or roughly. Avoid hitting it against hard surfaces, dropping it from height, kicking it, tossing it, or throwing it. Always pack and store them in dry places where they are safe from being hit.
Learn how to use the device
One of the best ways to spoil an electronic device is to use them in the wrong way. This is also true for your night vision devices. Handling them in a way that is harsher than they are designed to handle can lead to the device breaking down before it should. In addition, using a night vision device is very different from using a camera. It takes time and practice to get used to the view produced by night vision devices.
Read and understand your user manual
The best advice you can get on how to take good care of your night/thermal vision equipment is that you get from the manufacturer. This is why the user manual is your best advisor. When you get a new night/thermal vision equipment, be sure to read the manual for instructions. Cleaning and storage instructions are often included in the manual
Clean your equipment using the right materials
It has been mentioned that your night vision equipment should not be cleaned with the fingers so that your body oil would not dissolve the coating of the objective lenses. Your night/thermal vision equipment is very different from your binoculars, so you should never use the regular materials you use to clean your binoculars for night/thermal vision equipment.
It is also important to know that detergents and abrasives should not be used for cleaning your device.
There are special kits designed for cleaning night vision equipment. Getting one could save your equipment from being damaged easily. However, if you need to clean it when you don’t have your kit, a soft and clean cloth with a very small amount of distilled water should be used, and the device should be allowed to dry before packing. If there is an accumulation of dust in the device, then pressurized air should be used for cleaning, never use a standard keyboard cleaner. In addition, if there is moisture in it, a hand squeeze blower should be used.