Cartridge Cleaning Tips

Okay, you've probably seen Cartridge Cleaning Tips here and there on other sites, or from friends, but let's assume that you haven't read these tips before, or you're looking for a different cleaning method. If you're nasty cartridges continue to cause your television screen to blink continuously, read below for help on what to do.

The Traditional Method: Rubbing Alcohol and Q-Tips

First of all, get yourself a few Q-Tips and some Rubbing or Isopropyl Alcohol (which you should be able to find at any local drugstore). When your "supplies" are ready, dip one end of a Q-Tip into the Alcohol and rub that end of the Q-Tip back and forth on each side of the connectors in the cartridge. After this, rub the connectors with the dry end of the Q-Tip.

Try the game. You may still have to jiggle it a bit to get it to work right. If the game refuses to work, repeat the above steps once more, with a new Q-Tip. After 3 or 4 Q-Tips, you shouldn't have much of a problem getting the game to work, unless it's really dirty.

The "Other" Method: A Thin Pen/Ink Eraser

For a much easier (and possibly cheaper) method of cleaning cartridges, find a very thin pen/ink eraser. Be sure that what you find is a pen/ink eraser, not a pencil eraser (Pen/Ink erasers are usually gray in color and often firmer than pencil erasers). Also keep in mind that the eraser must be thin enough to fit into one side of the cartridge connectors.

Once you have your pen/ink eraser, place it on one side of the cartridge connectors and swipe the eraser back and forth. Then, do so on the other side of the connectors. Blow into the cartridge quickly to remove the eraser "dust" (try not to spit while you do this) and try out the cartridge in your video game system.

You shouldn't have to use the eraser more than twice on a cartridge at any one time. This may seem like a strange cartridge-cleaning method, but it does work. A typical pen/ink eraser is firm enough to break dirt and rust from the connectors but soft enough to keep from causing damage.

Please Note: RoyalRanger's NES Site and/or RoyalRanger will not be held responsible if any damage is caused to a cartridge you attempt to clean. The methods above have been tested and proved to work well, so make sure you follow the directions correctly.