how to take care of your action camera

If you own a GoPro, action camera, or actually any type of camera out there, you should probably take a look at this because it tells you how to take care of your camera. Because with proper care of your camera, it is going to last a really long time and your investment in your device would be worth it.

I once owned an action camera and it was actually a gift from my aunt from my birthday and when I first saw it, I was really excited because at that time, action cameras weren’t that popular and it was the first time that I have actually seen it. It was the SJCAM SJ4000 by the way, which is a great beginner’s action camera by the way.

Within 2 holiday trips of happily using my camera, sadly and unfortunately, it got damaged. This is how it looked after the wreckage.

Damaged, Ruined SJ4000
My Ruined SJ4000

As you can see, even if you have an action camera or the best quality and most durable camera out in the market, with improper care, it would still get damaged at the end of the day. It’s really just a matter of when. Hence, this is the reason I am helping you people out there so that you don’t repeat my mistake and realise the importance of proper care.

Whether you own a GoPro, SJCAM, Eken, Yi, ThiEYE, below are some tips and tricks to better take care for your action camera.

1. Proper Storage

GoPro XiaoMi SJCAM Action Camera Medium Sized StorageI have actually written a more in-depth post about this here.

If you have read the introduction of this post, you’ll probably know that I have damaged my camera and should be wondering how. Well… simply said, improper storage. If you want to know more about what happened, you can check it out here.

Anyways, back to the point. If you usually just put your camera into your bag, you should probably stop doing it from here thereafter. Unless your bag is completely empty or you have a side pocket entirely dedicated to your action camera, you would definitely damage and scratch it. It’s just a matter of when.

You might be wondering how? Well, your bag(s), I am guessing you are using a daypack, contains many items such as keys, wallet, pens, etc and all these items regardless of how sharp or dangerous can be a threat to your action camera. I personally am a victim of it and just a simple pen without a cover, just that ONLY, ruined my camera and caused the lens to be scratched.

GoPro XiaoMi SJCAM Action Camera StorageSo what am I suggesting here? If you are really interested about taking care of your camera, get one of those camera pouch or bag, which you can find here under $4.

The camera bag will be able to protect your camera from impact, dust and scratches that your backpack would not be able to. Furthermore, you can keep all your accessories and mounts in one organised fashion, making it very convenient for you.

In conclusion, I feel it is a really good investment because even if you change your camera a million times, you’ll still be able to use the same bag.

2. Lens

By now, you should already know that the lens of the camera is one of the most delicate parts of your camera, and hence you should treat it the most fragile.

You might have done this before because I did.

So someway or another, dust or sand or whatever particle land on your lens. You decide to use your finger to swipe it away. If you are lucky, you get it away without leaving a print. Else, you leave a smudge there. You then use your shirt to wipe it and the smudge becomes even more spread out. You repeat until it is eventually gone.

You might think doing all of that does not do anything or harm your lens. But what you do not know is that you are slowly peeling and scratching off the protective layer of the lens and when that’s gone, it’s too late already.

So what can you do?

GoPro XiaoMi SJCAM Action Camera Lens Cleaning KitUse a blower to get rid of the dust or particle. If what you have is a smudge, do not use your shirt and instead use a microfiber cloth (spectacles cloth work as well). You can buy the whole cleaning kit for a couple of bucks here.

SJCAM SJ4000 Lens ProtectorAlternatively, you can buy a lens protector to prevent it from getting scratched and dirty in the first place.

3. Storing Batteries

Taking out battery is a good Idea

This is quite important because it has happened to me before. If you are not going to use your camera for maybe a month or longer, take out the battery from the compartment and isolate it.

The reason is quite simple.

The battery is still slowly being used up by the camera even though the camera is turned off. Once the battery dies or is empty, the camera will still continue to drain the battery, causing the battery to leak. Once it leaks, it might damage the contact point as it causes a short circuit or worse still, corrosion and rusting occurs. When that happens, the camera is pretty much gone because the rust and corrosion would block the contact point of the battery and the camera.

However, having said that, only if you are not using it then do you do that. If it’s a couple of weeks it’s still fine.

What can you do?

Small Action Camera Storage for GoPros, SJCAM, Action CamerasYou can consider buying something like the picture above so you keep your camera protected and at the same time organised and not lose your battery. Click here to buy for $3.

Also since we are talking about batteries, I have actually brought a camera without batteries once before so…. yeah… check before you leave. 😛

4. Keeping Your Camera On Only When You Need It

camera care tips leaving on for too long Another thing I want to tell u guys would be that it’s a good habit to only switch on your camera only if you want to take a picture or film something.

I have always seen many people actually keeping their camera on and no matter how long or durable your camera is, keep it off if you do not want it to.

Keeping your camera continuously on isn’t good for it because after a while, it will start to heat up and once it heats up, you should already know from your phones, it will decrease in efficiency, a little longer and the battery will start to degrade and decrease in capacity. Also, you wouldn’t need to charge your battery that frequently because you are saving batteryby decreasing the turn on duration.

5. Memory Card

So small yet so large micro sd cardMany of the action cameras use a micro SD card because of how small (size) yet large (capacity) it is.

It is quite common sensical to not leave micro SD cards around hanging before it can get scratched very easily and your card will be corrupted leaving all your footages gone.Micro SD card storage cheap small good lightI suggest you getting one of these storages or protective cases if you do not have a place to store them already.

mechanical hard drive internalsOh another thing, you might have heard from rumours about putting your SD card near strong magnetic sources will cause the data to be deleted.

That isn’t true already because nowadays, all data cards uses electronics part which will not get affected by strong magnetic fields unlike the past where they used mechanical parts like floppy disks or hard disk drives.

Also, since we are discussing about SD card, another thing I want you guys to note would be NEVER to take out your SD card while your camera is switched on, same thing for your phone, same thing for your computer.

You might have already did that be it purposely or accidentally before and nothing has happened and you might be doubting what I am saying right now. However, there is a chance one day where the camera is writing or reading data from the card and when taken out during that process, the card may become corrupted (all data erased, card can’t be used) and many people have been victims of that. So what I am trying to bring across is for you to not take that risk and play on the safe side.

Remember your camera does not come cheap. Although it can be a hassle to care and maintain it, it will definitely pay you back by lasting for a long time, or even better, your lifetime.

That concludes my post. If you have any questions or comments that you want to discuss, please feel free to drop a comment and I’ll definitely reply as soon as I can. Thanks for reading and have a nice day! 🙂

–> Click here to check out my other action camera guides!<–

–> Don’t know which action camera to buy, click here to see my reviews on them!<–

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  1. Your website was exactly what I needed! We just bought our GoPro Session Hero and are totally green… I’ve been watching youtube video tutorials but I really like how you have all of the important aspects that you don’t think about covered here— like a carrying case/protector! We are going to Aruba in July and need to pick one up before we leave… I’ve seen some videos where people actually put their GoPro cameras in boiling water, or even an oven while stuff is cooking… is there a special case that’s needed for those types of shots. I want to timelapse a video of us cooking a pizza 🙂

    1. Actually there isn’t any case for high temperature filming. I don’t really have any experience in high temperature filming unfortunately but here’s a thread you can read for more information on how some were able to do it. You can check it out here!

  2. I see that you learn the lesson the hard way by not storing your camera properly.
    That is a very good point , keep the camera in its bag when not in use.
    It’s great that you are not only educating but are also giving direct links to the products needed, I reckon it will save a few lenses and a camera or two from being damaged.
    Great article, I have never owned an action camera, what would be a good one to start with?

    1. Thanks for commenting and giving positive feedback! If you are looking for an action camera to start with, I have actually created a list here, all below $100 and I feel all of them would be perfect for beginners!

  3. This is a great page and very informative. all these action cams are made to withstand a beating but its still a good idea to follow the tips you provided to protect your investment. I have a GOPRO but i dont have a protective case, but after reading this im definitley going to grab one just to keep it safer when traveling.

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